If you plan on quitting your job, you better have a good reason, Career Services Coordinator Cliff Garinn said.
Employees leaving a position in their industry for another have to tread lightly, he said. After all, it's still an employer's market, he added.
"It's got to be more than just, 'this other job looks more interesting,' because it's very difficult to land a position, especially right out of college," Garinn said. "It's not impossible, but there's still effort to be made after that."
Provide a two-week notice before vacating the post, and write a gracious letter, too, he said.
"That letter needs to be able to communicate how grateful they are for the opportunity, what they've learned while on the job, their desire to keep the doors open for any networking opportunities, professional development, professional interaction, still, but you never know," Garinn said. "You may have to come back to that job, and you want to do everything possible to keep those bridges open for that."
Make sure not to leave a bad taste in the boss' mouth, Garinn said.
"One of the negative impacts could be if the employer knows that that person is coming from UT Arlington, it could look bad on the institution," he said. "So it's not just about themselves, but it also could impact the entire group of students and colleagues that come behind that person. It makes them looks bad obviously personally and professionally."
Perhaps worse, your old boss may spread the word.
"There's always a chance that that employer could find out where that person is going to work and call and say, 'Hey, I just want to let you know, you hired Johnathan, and he just flew the coop,' " Garinn said. "That might be unethical, and that might be unprofessional for the employer, but what if they say, 'Hey, you hired this guy. He did it to me. He might do it to you. Just thought I'd let you know.' Plus, you burn the bridges. So if something happens and that doesn't work out, then you don't have any place to go back to, so you're starting from square one again."
Even if you hated your job and/or you have a terrible boss, still stay gracious, Garinn said. Some good reasons for leaving your job might include being hired under false pretenses, having a jerk for a boss and mounting stress that makes you want to quit even if there is no other job offer, he said.
Once it's clear you're on your way out the door, make sure to do everything possible to have a good exit.
"Take care of all your work. Leave detailed instructions on whatever your particular role was so that the person coming behind you can pick that job up relatively easily," Garinn said. "If you are working on an assignment and you know you're not going to finish it before you leave, make sure you leave instructions — you leave details, people know where your files are, that kind of stuff — so that whoever is coming up behind you can somewhat take that information pretty easily."