Manners & Misdemeanors

The Truly Rich Lady's Guide to Quitting Your Job, And More

How to deploy the power of saying goodbye or, really, just saying no.
ILLUSTRATOR ALYSSE ASILO
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V, a young professional seeking to become like me, a Truly Rich Lady, is contemplating leaving her post as a junior something in a small company, and she wants to know how to do it properly.

Now, resigning is tricky stuff. You will break a few eggs in the process, because it is tantamount to saying, “I do not want you!” Nevertheless, there are ways to soften the blow and even make the other party happy for you.

Now, I have never ever resigned from a job, because, well, a Truly Rich Lady never does something as ungraceful as leaving. We only flutter from flower to flower when the tides deems it is time.

What I do know is how to deploy the power of saying goodbye or, really, just saying no. Gleaned from my own precious experiences and from the advice of professionals and friends, here is how to leave somewhere, refuse someone, or turn down anything with grace and style.

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When Resigning From a Job

It astounds me how people do not know how to do this properly. To resign with honor, you will only need face time with your boss and, most important, a resignation letter.

If I have to explain to you why tendering notice through a midnight text or an angry social media post is bad form, please leave now.

What needs to happen is simple: Talk to your manager about your plans and, in that meeting, hand in your letter of resignation. Both talk and letter should be professional, respectful, and brief. The letter, in particular, is most succinct, stating only the details that are needed: that you are resigning from your job, that your last day will be on this date, and that you will work hard until your last day.

Leave personal observations, emotions, suggestions out of it. There is also no need to supply a reason for leaving (citing “personal reasons” is dumb) and certainly no need to make a whole Shakespearean drama about the trials and tribulations of being a desk jockey and how utterly horrible your officemates are.

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And, yes, while it is very tempting to just dilly-dally until your last day, please do your best to perform at full capacity and maybe even more, since you will be leaving a hole in your operations. Also, don't be smug.

When Turning Down a Job Offer

Of late, my CEO friends have also been telling me of this alarming trend of young people accepting job offers and then suddenly, after a brief taste of work (half a day!), telling HR they don’t want to do it anymore. Boohoo.

This is awful. My Truly Rich Father has always impressed the value of integrity, saying that when you commit to something, you must do your best to see it through—and not leave even before begins.

When you are not interested in a job offer, informing the company right away is the proper thing to do.

In this particular case, if there are reservations in your heart about a job, well, do not say yes!

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Not saying no to a job you are not interested in or saying yes to a job you are lukewarm about is the same as leading someone on. If you are not definite or decisive about declining a job, you are only interrupting the company's workflow or delaying its objective of getting someone onboard.

Much like the above, this is best done via official communication, which remains an e-mail. Do not leave a Post-It saying that you “did not like it (sad face emoji).”

When Turning Down an Invitation

I am utterly guilty of this. Sometimes—maybe one percent of my invitations—I confirm for a party and then take it back mere hours before the event. I imagine my host dumbstruck when I call to say that I can not make it. Who will be their guest of honor? I usually send them a bouquet the day after.

In the same way that you would RSVP to a party that you really want to go to, you must also RSVP in the negative when you feel like you'd rather give your cat a bath than get into a tight dress and smile all night.

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Remember: Seats, food allocation, party favors are all counted, and saying yes and then no just messes up the plan. 

When Turning Down a Date

When it comes to dating, men can be cruel. I have heard of horror stories where a man promises he is on his way, but then suddenly says he is not coming or worse never shows up. And then he disappears like a ghost and you are left wondering if you made this entire thing up.

Men (and women), don't be like this. There is no shame in saying (nicely) that you are not interested in going out with someone. In fact, a flat-out refusal is a blessing in that it prevents future heartbreak.

How to do it? I would say it plainly: “Thank you, sir, but I am not interested in going out.” 

When Turning Down an Unsolicited Phone Offer

A call that interrupts your reverie or lunch can be handled with more intention. With as much patience that you can muster, say that you are not interested and end the call. Now, I know these people are just doing their jobs, but they are interrupting my very delicate feeding time, which happens only twice a day. Just say no.

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About The Author
C.C. Coo
The Truly Rich Lady
C.C. Coo—also known as Town&Country’s Truly Rich Lady—is not a professional seeker of leisure as many people wrongly assume, for she has a real-life occupation: a SHE-EO of Important (Sub)Company of an Empire, for which she works very hard to make sure that the people in her care are not left wanting. She believes that manners are utterly important: “If society is like one of those costume jewelry pieces worn by Jackie O or Diana, manners would be the glue that keeps the veneer of a most beautiful thing from falling apart,” she says.
View Other Articles From C.C.
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