A company’s treatment towards an employee affects how the individual will quit the job, finds a study. Those who feel they are respected and treated fairly are more likely to resign in a positive manner.
“The resignation predictors are whether an employee feels they are being treated fairly at work and whether they feel they are respected by their boss,” said Anthony Klotz, Assistant Professor at the Oregon State University. The researchers through a series of studies, including interviews with employees and employers, found that generally, employees quit in one of seven ways — by the book, perfunctory, grateful goodbye, in the loop, avoidant, bridge burning and impulsive quitting.
Two key factors determine whether a person resigns in a positive way or in a way that could have damaging consequences for the business, the study suggests. The by-the-book and perfunctory resignations are the most common, but roughly one in 10 employees quits in bridge-burning style. Avoidant, bridge burning and impulsive quitting are seen as potentially harmful resignation styles for employers.
The researchers found that managers were particularly frustrated by employees who resigned using bridge burning, avoidant or perfunctory styles. So, employees who want to leave on good terms should avoid those styles. The study, published in the Journal of Applied Psychology, also indicated that managers responded the least negatively to resignations when employees kept them “in the loop” and when employees followed organisational policies regarding resignation.
“Each resignation situation is unique to that employee and their relationship to the company. So, the best way to resign at one company may not be the best way to resign at another. But companies would be well-served to review their employee handbooks and update their formal resignation policies to reflect best practices for current company needs,” Klotz added.
Companies also should consider monitoring how employees quit for potential signs of management issues. If a number of employees quit in a negative way, that could be a sign of a poor supervisor or other problems with company treatment of employees, the study suggested.