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One of the hardest moments of your professional life is making the leap to a new opportunity. You may enjoy the work you do, enjoy the people you’re surrounded by, and have grown accustomed to the daily life in your role, but circumstances have dictated that it’s time to move on. But just how do you properly leave your current position?

Leaving a position in a professional manner can be just as important as your performance and behavior while still in the role. You never want to burn a bridge, and you never know when or where you might run into your former colleagues. Use the tips below to properly leave your job for future endeavors.

Give official notice with a letter of resignation.

A professional and well thought-out resignation letter gives both your immediate boss and the Human Resources department official notice to put into your file. It also allows you the opportunity to thank your employer for your time of employment and the experience you gained while an employee. In your resignation letter, try not to be negative or state reasons for any displeasure you might have (except in extreme cases). This will be on file forever, and you want it to reflect you in a positive light.

Give your employer the proper amount of time.

The best time to submit a letter of resignation is on a Friday afternoon. This allows downtime for thought and process for your superiors over the weekend. Also, be sure to give your employer enough notice so that they can find a replacement for your position—at least two weeks is the standard.

Expect questions, but stand your ground.

Your boss will most likely inquire about your reasons for leaving, where you are heading, and perhaps some detail about your new offer. Feel free to answer as you feel comfortable, but be sure to remain focused, even if your current employer offers you more money to stay.

Offer to assist with the transition.

This may not always be applicable, but it shows that you still are invested in the success of your position, despite the fact that you are personally moving on. It’s a small, high character action that will reflect well on you.

Clear your actual physical workspace.

Take a moment to properly dispose of/shred any old and unnecessary documents and workbooks. Reconfigure any customization you’ve made to your desk, office, or other workspaces. Take down anything of yours that was pinned up around you. You don’t have to go crazy with it, but showing that courtesy is a classy move. It will certainly be noted if you leave your workspace like a slob, and you don’t want that!

Putting in your resignation can be both challenging and exciting, but remember to be thoughtful and professional throughout the experience. You never know when you may benefit from your experiences at a previous employer!