Photo: Baratunde Thurston/Flickr
Are you thinking of leaving your job for a new one?Daydreaming, perhaps, about walking out in a blaze of glory?
A few weeks ago I shared some loony exit letters.
Of course, I noted that these noteworthy notices were better left to romantic comedies than employed in real life, since burning bridges is never a smart career move–particularly when unemployment still hovers at 9.1%.
Finding a new gig and giving a respectful two weeks’ notice? Much more advisable.
But if you need some comic relief today (and maybe some more fodder for your ditch-your-job daydream), I’ve collected 3 new colourful (and risky) quitting stories, which thankfully turned out well for these employees in the end. But please, don’t try these at home:
1. Making a (Literal) Great Escape
“Years ago, when I was 17, I worked for a law firm in London as a junior receptionist but wanted badly to work the phones. One day [the phone operator] had to go home with a migraine and I stepped into her seat. It had all looked so easy when I was dropping the mail off, but within minutes, lights were flashing, little doors were opening and buzzing sounds were making themselves known — I was so scared.
“I pressed a few buttons and surely cut people off, [and eventually] I had enough. I wanted to go home but that would mean walking through the whole office. So I climbed out of the window. We were on the second floor but I kept going, scraped my knees and left my jacket up there to boot. When I got home to my mum’s house, I asked her to call and tell them I had quit — but of course, no one answered the phone!
“Now I run my own business — transatlantic dating site I Love Your Accent — and I make sure my office is on the first floor.” — Rochelle Peachey, Orlando, Fla.
2. Taking the Money and Running
“A few years ago while working at a very small PR agency in NYC, I realised very quickly that the owner was a terror. I had heard nightmare stories about how the owner would often not give employees their last paycheck after they put in notice. So once I had another job offer lined up, [I waited] until my check was automatically deposited, and come 6 p.m. I went in to her office and declared I was quitting. She instantly picked up the phone to call pay roll and tell them not to deposit my check.
“Once I reminded her it was already in my account, she slammed the phone down. [Then she] found out where I was going to be working and called to give me a negative review — although thankfully her reputation in the industry preceded her and it didn’t affect my job offer. The negative vibes of that office still give me chills, but I sure did learn a lot.” — Name withheld, New York City
3. Getting Caught Moonlighting
“I’d been out of college for a year and had taken my first job at a major PR firm. Within a couple of months of being there, I started my own PR agency on the side. Over the next three months, it started to flourish to the point at which I was living a double life and knew it was only a matter of time before my bosses would find out and give me an ultimatum.
“Finally, in September of 2007, I landed myself a feature story on the front page of the Business section of the Asbury Park Press, and my bosses saw it and called me into their office. I was only an assistant account executive, and they couldn’t believe I had started my own successful PR firm under their noses. They told me if I gave it up I could stay, but I told them I had worked so hard over the past few months and couldn’t give it up, so I quit right there. That was four years ago, and my business has gone on to grow by leaps and bounds.” — Steven Le Vine, West Hollywood, Calif.
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