Resignation Letters: Keep to the Point!
The same is true with resignation letters. If you're resigning because of race-based discrimination, harassment, and/or retaliation (constructive termination), you've probably already had more drama than you can stand. So, try not to be highly emotional, when you’re writing your resignation letter!
Yes, you may be justified in being upset or angry, etc. However, those legitimate emotions can be twisted by your employer and can be used against you in the future. Remember, your official resignation is in writing. Therefore, it can come back to haunt you. So, choose your words carefully. Here are some tips:
--don’t forget to include the effective date of your resignation;
--give 2 weeks notice—unless there are extenuating circumstances.You're employer can claim that you didn't give enough notice to cover the workload and it resulted in missed deadlines, etc., which they may falsely claim is consistent of your behavior throughout your employment;
--write professionally--try not to be argumentative;
--spell-check and grammar check your resignation letter;
--don’t use profanity;
--don’t make threats of physical violence;
--don’t make threats of legal action—let your employer be surprised;
--don’t attach any old or new evidence that will be used in your complaint;
--don’t make any new accusations—at this point, save all issues for your complaint;
-- explain why you are ending your employment. If you are resigning for cause, briefly state the cause (harassment, falsely accused of performance deficiencies or insubordination, retaliation, etc.);
--don’t write about what your employer should have done—although you can briefly state that your employer failed to prevent or correct misconduct, etc;
--don’t write a 100 page resignation letter—keep it as short as possible;
--CC: HR and the Director of your department/unit (assuming your resignation is sent to your immediate supervisor); and
--inquire about the date for your exit interview (and plan to be truthful at the meeting with HR).
Remember: If you are resigning due to race-based misconduct, don’t let fear cause you to write a resignation letter that sounds like a glowing thank you letter (e.g., I appreciate the opportunities provided to me by the company.) If you were forced to resign, you should not portray yourself as a happy camper on the way out the door. Your employer will gladly show your smiley face resignation letter to any investigator or jury and will state that it is proof that you weren’t subjected to an offensive or hostile work environment.