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Ask Slashdot: When Is It OK To Not Give Notice?

timothy posted about a year ago | from the as-you-put-the-strychnine-in-the-guacamole dept.

The Almighty Buck 892

An anonymous reader writes "Here in the U.S., 'being professional' means giving at least two week's notice when leaving a job. Is this an outmoded notion? We've all heard stories about (or perhaps experienced) a quick escort to the parking lot upon giving the normal notice, and I've never heard of a company giving a two-week notice to an employee that's being laid off or fired. A generation ago, providing a lengthy notice was required to get a glowing reference, but these days does a reference hold water any more? Once you're reached the point where you know it's time to leave, under what circumstances would you just up and walk out or give only a short notice?"

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When you don't want a reference (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44577897)

No notice is probably the biggest middle finger you can give a company and still remain within the bounds of the law.

Re:When you don't want a reference (5, Insightful)

noh8rz10 (2716597) | about a year ago | (#44577917)

I think if you don't give notice then it raises red flags for your new employer. You could tell your new employer you'll start in two weeks, then tell your current employer to eff off, and then take two weeks for yourself (unpaid). But industries are so small that why would you want to burn bridges?

Re:When you don't want a reference (0)

crutchy (1949900) | about a year ago | (#44578029)

many employment contracts likely require minimum notice of termination as a condition which you must agree to

Re:When you don't want a reference (1)

The Grim Reefer (1162755) | about a year ago | (#44578157)

many employment contracts likely require minimum notice of termination as a condition which you must agree to

And wiping your ass with those contracts is probably the most useful they will be.

Re:When you don't want a reference (4, Informative)

unrtst (777550) | about a year ago | (#44578247)

many employment contracts likely require minimum notice of termination as a condition which you must agree to

And wiping your ass with those contracts is probably the most useful they will be.

Unless you want to collect on your unpaid benefit time. Some contracts will "require" two weeks notice, and will pay out any unpaid vacation (and maybe sick as well) if you provide said two weeks notice. They don't phrase it as a tit-for-tat, but that's really what it is in most states (at-will employment, where they can legally fire you without cause at any moment, and you can walk out without notice at any moment).

AFAIK, parent post is absolutely correct in the strict legal sense - you can just walk out, and they can just fire you. Contracts do not trump those laws.

Re:When you don't want a reference (2)

ackthpt (218170) | about a year ago | (#44578189)

many employment contracts likely require minimum notice of termination as a condition which you must agree to

Meanwhile, there are some employers who have fired employees for giving notice and their act of disloyalty.

Really depends upon the employer, but trying to avoid burning bridges is generally considered good practice and a respectful thing to do.

The company who picked up my former co-workers forbade them to talk to me under threat of immediate termination - I never worked for them, I just decided not to sign on with an outsourcing company and left for greener pastures.

Probably best to keep track of how your employer handles things and what potential non-competitive clauses you may have to step around if you are thinking of leaving at some point.

No notice, no reference (5, Informative)

DogDude (805747) | about a year ago | (#44577905)

As an employer, we don't give references for people who don't give two weeks' notice. It's just common courtesy.

Re:No notice, no reference (2, Insightful)

MetalliQaZ (539913) | about a year ago | (#44577927)

And I'm sure you extend that courtesy to the people you let go... right? Yeah didn't think so.

Re:No notice, no reference (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578037)

...everywhere i've worked has either given two weeks notice or paid two weeks' salary up front for layoffs...

Re:No notice, no reference (4, Informative)

Fluffeh (1273756) | about a year ago | (#44578087)

Yeah, but when people are laid off, they might get walked out the door, but they are still paid the next two weeks wages. At least that is the case in Australia. Yeah, it's certainly not unheard of that folks walk into the office one morning and get told that they have been let go - but they are always paid their two weeks + entitlements that same morning.

Re:No notice, no reference (1)

Larry_Dillon (20347) | about a year ago | (#44577957)

Do you give employees two week's notice?

Re: No notice, no reference (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578025)

Generally (but not always) no. Additionally, generally (but not always) there is some sort of severance payment of two weeks or more.

Re:No notice, no reference (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44577981)

Many employers don't do references anymore, for liability reasons. They just confirm that someone worked there and that's it.
Last place I worked, when they let someone go on bad terms, they paid them 2 weeks but sent them home.

Not only that... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578033)

But Walmart for instance outsources said verification to a third party, so any confirmation or denial isn't even coming from walmart proper.

Had a friend run into an issue with this getting his most recent reference for a much more rigorous job hire than he'd previously had.

Re:No notice, no reference (4, Interesting)

MightyMartian (840721) | about a year ago | (#44578035)

When I call to get references for a potential employee, I either get "Bob is an ace. Absolute genius. We're gonna miss him totally!" or we get "Bob worked here between August 2010 and July 2013."

While the former may not be completely reliable as to how good Bob is, just getting the latter tends to raise questions.

Re:No notice, no reference (4, Informative)

Guido von Guido II (2712421) | about a year ago | (#44578083)

Like somebody else said elsewhere in the thread, nowadays that's all many companies do for fear of getting their asses sued.

Re:No notice, no reference (3, Informative)

yorgasor (109984) | about a year ago | (#44578099)

Many companies won't give more information than this. I know Intel doesn't for legal reasons. That's why I list my employers, but my references are colleagues I've worked with.

Re:No notice, no reference (1)

silas_moeckel (234313) | about a year ago | (#44578123)

Agreed anything more than the HR yea he worked here has become a legal mine field.

Re:No notice, no reference (5, Informative)

rahvin112 (446269) | about a year ago | (#44578105)

Many companies (I would wager every one of the fortune 500 and probably any company larger than about 500 employees) have policies forbidding any information whether good or bad. Judging the employee by the minimal response is a mistake on your part.

Re:No notice, no reference (1)

cruff (171569) | about a year ago | (#44578141)

or we get "Bob worked here between August 2010 and July 2013."..., just getting the latter tends to raise questions.

Unfortunately many places have a policy in place that the period of employment is all they will reveal without a court order. You get no information about the actual employee performance, regardless of what the reality was.

Re:No notice, no reference (3, Insightful)

iCEBaLM (34905) | about a year ago | (#44578209)

I had an employer who told me up front that if anyone called asking for a reference all they would do is say when I worked there, they would not give any information good or bad. Judging people on employers giving the second response is not fair.

Re:No notice, no reference (1)

jcwayne (995747) | about a year ago | (#44578215)

It's precisely that interpretation that leads many companies to set a policy of only verifying employment, regardless of how good or bad an employee was.

Re:No notice, no reference (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578253)

Legally most places will only verify employment and the dates of that employment. Even if you say somebody was a genius or they were terrible, it opens the doors for a lawsuit that's not worth risking.

Re:No notice, no reference (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578013)

But it's okay for a company to terminate an employee without notice. Right.

References are sketchy at best nowadays anyways. Many employers in California do not give references anymore due to liability concerns. They can only state that the employee worked there during the specified time period. They don't say much more than that.

Besides, with sites like Linked-in, one can learn quite a bit more about a person's background than what an employer may or may not say.

Of course, a notice is a nice-to-do, but in the end if a company can remove me on the spot, I should be able to do the same. For me personally, I've never had to do that and always left my prior jobs on good terms.

Re:No notice, no reference (2)

The Grim Reefer (1162755) | about a year ago | (#44578231)

As an employer, we don't give references for people who don't give two weeks' notice. It's just common courtesy.

I gave 8 weeks notice to my last company after telling them a year prior that I would be leaving. The moment I gave them my written notice they told me I was terminated and screwed me out of a bunch of money. I'll never give more than two weeks notice again, if I even bother. I tried to be nice and help them to transition, but they were too fucking stupid. That was three years ago. I still have their customers looking me up trying to get help.

Respectable thing to do... (5, Insightful)

singhulariti (1963000) | about a year ago | (#44577907)

I gave my 2 week notice last week because I have no complaints from this place and thought I should be considerate and tie up all the loose ends before I left.

2 week (2, Informative)

O('_')O_Bush (1162487) | about a year ago | (#44577909)

In my state (VA) all companies are legally required to give several weeks notice to those being laid off.

Re:2 week (-1, Flamebait)

MightyMartian (840721) | about a year ago | (#44578091)

That's because you're a bunch of fucking Communists. The true American way is to kick their fucking asses out the door after you've raped them for the pathetic wage slaves they are. Now THAT'S freedom!

I'm Ron Paul, and I approved this message.

Re:2 week (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578165)

Are you having a really bad period?

I think (1)

zulater (635326) | about a year ago | (#44577911)

Office size is the biggest contributing factor imho. Don't want to burn bridges if you don't have to. In a bad work environment at a large employer you'll probably be asked to leave as soon as you give any notice.

Whenever you know they won't give you a reference (5, Insightful)

ModernGeek (601932) | about a year ago | (#44577913)

If your employer isn't going to give you a positive reference, or has been negligent in their treatment of you or your fellow employees, then your two weeks notice is a privilege that they gave up.

Re:Whenever you know they won't give you a referen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44577971)


I worked for a fairly abusive local helpdesk for about a month as a 1099 to perm employee (skirting laws already) and after taking the last piece of abuse I was willing to deal with keeping my mouth shut I resigned the next day effective immediately. They wouldn't have given a good notice, I just tell future employers that I was contract and the contract ended (which is quite true).

If the author works for a helpdesk in Louisville Kentucky that has a name similar to a certain muscle do yourself a favor and just get out.

Re:Whenever you know they won't give you a referen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578071)

If you give a negative reference, you may get sued.

Most employers only state the job description, the period of employment and the number of sick days in the last year of employment. Those are 100% neutral and besides are facts.


Re:Whenever you know they won't give you a referen (1)

intermodal (534361) | about a year ago | (#44578159)

Except when you get asked in interviews if you have ever quit without notice.

That said, there are circumstances when immediate departure is necessary.

Why not? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44577915)

Is there any particular reason you don't want to give notice?

2(Wrong) != Right (4, Insightful)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about a year ago | (#44577921)

Look, dude, if you want to walk out, then walk the fuck out. Don't look to the community to justify your behavior; obviously you're not 100% convinced that not giving notice is acceptable, otherwise you wouldn't be posting this question, now would you?

Me, I give my two weeks, regardless, because I'm better than that. If they want to let me go then and there, well, that's their prerogative. I get to keep my moral high ground by not stooping to their level.


Re:2(Wrong) != Right (3, Interesting)

Maxo-Texas (864189) | about a year ago | (#44578115)

The rules change so quickly these days, sometimes it is nice to touch base and see what they are on a given day.

Two weeks notice is not treated the same way it was 30 years ago. Then, in most jobs it was pretty sacrosanct. It seemed to me that after 2000, companies were much more likely to let people go immediately without pay. I think it may be partially due to insurance liability if you are in any kind of sensative job.

First! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44577923)

When the boss's daughter cheats on you.

Re:First! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578181)

When the boss's daughter cheats on you.

In Soviet Russia, your daughter's boss cheats on YOU!

If you're entering any position where previous (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44577929)

references will be interviewed, you do not want to leave on bad terms.
One question asked is whether a candidate is still considered re-employable by the company he/she has departed. Of the few questions recruiters are even allowed to ask these days, this one's the most important. A bad answer here with no explanation from the candidate could result in problems.
That and if you're applying for a cleared position (financially cleared, government cleared, etc.), you'll want those references to be clean when they get interviewed.

Re:If you're entering any position where previous (1)

emag (4640) | about a year ago | (#44578011)

Where a buddy of mine works, there's a tiny clause in the employment contract stating employees aren't eligible for re-hire if they don't give three months' notice. It's completely insane, and they missed out on getting a new COO because a decade ago the guy worked there & just gave a standard 2 weeks... And it wasn't discovered until they'd made the decision to hire him...

Places my wife has worked just have a blanket policy that they won't re-hire someone.

Re:If you're entering any position where previous (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | about a year ago | (#44578121)

We're pretty afraid to answer that one. The stock answer usually is "It would depend on the position that was available." Again, when you're interpreting references in this litigious age, you have to make your answers carefully, and as the potential employer you have to carefully interpret the reference that your given.

How about... (1)

djupedal (584558) | about a year ago | (#44577931)

When it's not in your contract. Or you just won the lottery....

And you don't look forward to any decent references...

Layoffs have legal notice requirements (4, Insightful)

Maxo-Texas (864189) | about a year ago | (#44577935)

If a large company is going to have a layoff they legally must give notice.

OTH, a friend of mine gave notice trying to be nice because she felt loyal to the company and was immediately fired.

Personally, I think if you give notice and they do not give you two weeks pay, then you should be able to be legally counted as fired. They can't both say you quit and ignore your two week period.

Re:Layoffs have legal notice requirements (2)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about a year ago | (#44577955)

Personally, I think if you give notice and they do not give you two weeks pay, then you should be able to be legally counted as fired. They can't both say you quit and ignore your two week period.

I agree - if I give two weeks notice, that's me telling the employer that I'm quitting... in two weeks. If they decide to let me go before that period is up, then they are the ones who terminated employment, not me.

No, don't do that. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578161)

Tell them of your INTENTION to leave in two weeks.

If the job falls out for some reason, you never actually resigned, you intended.

Re:Layoffs have legal notice requirements (1)

MetalliQaZ (539913) | about a year ago | (#44577975)

I work at a large company that laid off ~400 this week. There was no prior notice given. I have never heard of any such labor law (in my state, at least).

Re:Layoffs have legal notice requirements (3, Informative)

Maxo-Texas (864189) | about a year ago | (#44578137)

http://www.dol.gov/compliance/guide/layoffs.htm [dol.gov]

Basic Provisions/Requirements

WARN protects workers, their families, and communities by requiring employers to provide notification 60 calendar days in advance of plant closings and mass layoffs. Advance notice gives workers and their families some transition time to adjust to the prospective loss of employment, to seek and obtain other jobs and, if necessary, to enter skill training or retraining that will allow these workers to compete successfully in the job market. WARN also provides for notice to state dislocated worker units so that they can promptly offer dislocated worker assistance.

A covered plant closing occurs when a facility or operating unit is shut down for more than six months, or when 50 or more employees lose their jobs during any 30â'day period at a single site of employment. A covered mass layoff occurs when 50 to 499 employees are affected during any 30-day period at a single employment site (or for certain multiple related layoffs, during a 90-day period), if these employees represent at least 33 percent of the employerâ(TM)s workforce where the layoff will occur, and the layoff results in an employment loss for more than six months. If the layoff affects 500 or more workers, the 33 percent rule does not apply.

WARN does not apply to closure of temporary facilities, or the completion of an activity when the workers were hired only for the duration of that activity. WARN also provides for less than 60 days notice when the layoffs resulted from closure of a faltering company, unforeseeable business circumstances, or natural disaster.

Re:Layoffs have legal notice requirements (1)

lgw (121541) | about a year ago | (#44578187)

The WARN Act [wikipedia.org] kicks in when a large company lays off more than a third of its workforce, more than 500 people, or closes a site, with certain exceptions. Large company layoffs are routinely either just under 500 people, or game the exceptions.

Re:Layoffs have legal notice requirements (4, Interesting)

Tilgore Krout (22720) | about a year ago | (#44578143)

Very true. What most people forget is that when you are laid off you are normally given a couple of weeks or more notice, just that the company doesn't normally expect (or want) you to show up for those two weeks.

About 10 years ago I was laid off from a large company after being given my termination date about a year in advance. If I stayed on for the whole year (to help ease the transition of my job to several sites overseas) then I would get a rather large bonus for staying on.

Of course the last couple of months I was there I was bored to death since my job was already transitioned and I was just sitting on my thumbs in case something unexpected came up and they needed to consult me. I spent my days surfing the web, and doing job searches. When I had job interviews I told my boss and he gave me the time off to go to those. By the time of my exit interview I had a new job and reported to it that job that afternoon. I was able to pocket all of my severance and bonus for staying on until the bitter end, but in retrospect I wish I would have taken a little time off since I didn't take any vacation the previous year.

Yeah, right (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44577943)

In IT, when was he last time anyone game US two weeks notice, even knowing they were going to ice you and knowing you were doing a large purchase in that time period?

Yes (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44577945)

Yes, you need to give notice. If the employer then chooses to escort you out the door immediately, that's their prerogative.

At the last seven rounds of layoffs at my company, employees have been given at least two weeks; on average a month; and in one case four months' notice (then mgt looked the other way while those affected used company resources to find new jobs). They're not all a-holes. Don't you be one, either.

Just think of it as a courtesy. (4, Insightful)

seebs (15766) | about a year ago | (#44577953)

Giving notice is a way to give people time to wrap things up -- make sure your stuff is handed off to someone else if needed, start looking for a replacement, or whatever. It's done to be courteous, and to make things less troublesome for other people. I was in a small department where someone just suddenly left one day; out of the blue, email telling us he got a job he likes better and is gone now. Which sort of sucked, because we suddenly didn't have enough people for the workload, and we'd had things like vacations and whatnot planned, and everyone had to scuttle around madly making up for things with no notice, and any recovery plan (like finding a new guy) had to happen on top of suddenly dealing with this. Which sucked. If he'd given us two weeks' notice, we could have done stuff like ask him to update/annotate work in progress so we knew what was happening, and started looking for people, and had time to discuss who was rescheduling what to make up the hours.

So it's a nice thing to do, and if you don't do it, people might be mad at you. Sometimes that might be okay. Sometimes you know they'll be mad at you regardless. Sometimes you just can't deal with someone or something a day longer. In which case, well. You leave.

Think of it like any other courtesy. It's there to make things more pleasant for other people. Usually, things like that are a good strategy because they make other people like you better, which makes them more likely to help you if an opportunity to do so arises. If I run into a job that I know a bunch of my former coworkers could do, and I know a lot of people are looking for work, I might try to put some of them in touch with the prospective employer, right? Well, not the guy who ditched out without warning, obviously.

As with all social niceties, it's somewhat cultural, and somewhat role-dependent. The importance of giving notice is wildly different between, say, the sole sysadmin at a company, and one of a team of thirty junior sysadmins, none of whom ever "own" any project, but who are just going through a series of small assigned tasks which are always done or handed off by the end of the day.

It's ok under certain circumstances (1)

johnny cashed (590023) | about a year ago | (#44577959)

Like when you are saying "fuck you guys" as you are walking out the door and don't expect any references from them ever. Not recommended, but sometimes cathartic. Would be considered "non professional"

Not about employer (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44577967)

It's about your coworkers. Did you leave them a mess to clean up? Leave with some critical knowledge? Then good luck getting a reference from them. Or if they move to a different company that you want to work at, good luck getting hired. Reputation spreads, leave a good one. Of course if something is crazy than use your own judgment. Or talk to your coworkers.

severance (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44577969)

If my employer lays me off and escorts me out of the building immediately they still give one month plus one-week-per-year-served in severance. Seems like the least I could do is give two weeks notice to finish up my tasks.

employer won't say anything fear of being sued. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44577973)

My company will not give a reference regardless of the situation. Whatever they say is open to opinion and if it sways the employee's next employer they could be sued. The only thing they will say is dates of employment.

Layoff... (5, Interesting)

MachineShedFred (621896) | about a year ago | (#44577987)

I've never heard of a company giving a two-week notice to an employee that's being laid off or fired

It depends on the size of the layoff; see: the WARN Act [dol.gov] . I was once given a paid 60 days absence before the actual layoff because they were shuttering the division. Gave me enough time to get another job, and get home from my first day of work to find a FedEx envelope with my final severance check.

That's how you downsize with class. Or, by being legal.

Re:Layoff... (1)

Tex Bravado (91447) | about a year ago | (#44578145)

There can indeed be a difference between being walked out on the spot, just as you've been notified; and actually being no longer employed.
It can be hard to tell the difference emotionally as you carry your box of stuff out to your car, though.
I was walked out.
In a previous job, two positions were consolidated into one, and I got it. The previous occupant of the other stayed to help me come up to speed, and clearly hated every day of it. Now *that* is what I call professional courtesy. When I later left that company, I gave 2 weeks notice, and worked to the last day, past the last hour, and missed my 'going away' lunch, too boot. Now *that* is what I call silly.

Give notice, got notice (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44577991)

As noted in other posts, no notice no reference. You might get asked about how and why you left your last position a lie can easily be caught here. But be ready to be escorted out, just in case they go there. When I was laid off from a Big 5 Bank our (new VP) didn't want to give me notice, but my manager made it happen anyway. 1 month if I recall correctly.

It Depends (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44577997)

How long will it take you to impart the knowledge you have that is necessary for the smooth transition of your company/division/unit/team/whatever when you leave? If it's going to be longer than 30 days, just do 30 days.

Re:It Depends (2)

HornWumpus (783565) | about a year ago | (#44578249)

30 days? If they want 30 days they can _PAY_ and I'll work late hours for them. Very few new jobs will wait a month. What you are suggesting basically implies quitting before you find a new job.

Hypothetically: They should have thought of how dependent they were last round of raises. My loyalty, such as it is, is now to my new employer.

In my experience 30 days would rarely be enough anyhow. Better to leave them an email address/phone number and actually give them 24 hour turnaround answers. Not instant answers; from home. Let them suck on their problem for a little while.

Layoffs = 45 day notice @ my employer (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44577999)

You may not be required to work those 45 days, but you are an on-the-books employee (with full benefits and the ability to transfer to a new position without being a "new hire") for 45 days.

As for when it's acceptable: If listing the company on your resume would lower your chances of getting a new job, and you never want to work there again, and you don't want to work with any of the people who have ever worked there (or will ever work there, then by all means don't bother with notice. Otherwise, what's your rush?

Re-hirable (2)

Endophage (1685212) | about a year ago | (#44578009)

These days, while a future employer may not check your references, it's not uncommon for them to at least call you previous employer and ask if you're "re-hirable". It's one of the few questions, other than simply confirming that you worked there and your position, that they can ask. Failing to give 2 weeks normally renders you not re-hirable by the company you ditched and raises serious questions for the company considering employing you.

Also worth considering, if you're leaving a job because there's a better offer or it's just the right time in your life to take a risk (I left my last job to join a 4 person startup), you may be back working with your previous employer in the future, At my last company, there was one guy who had left and returned 3 times.

Rule #1 Never Burn Bridges (1)

Hillgiant (916436) | about a year ago | (#44578019)

Rule #2 See Rule #1.

You never know when you might see these people again or in what context. Even if you hate their guts, don't burn bridges.

A European perspective (4, Informative)

Teun (17872) | about a year ago | (#44578027)

I know the article starts with "Here in the US" so European stories could be off topic but will also bring some perspective.
Earlier this year our head of maintenance announced he was leaving in 3 months time and it was greatly appreciated by the management.
It was very professional of him (that other word in the article) and gave us time to look for a replacement.

Obviously it helped he was going to a totally different industry and he could not possibly be accused of helping the competition.

Besides, a typical European contract has a similar notice for both employer and employee.

Basic labour laws. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578041)

As a Canadian, I am amazed that most US states don't have basic labour laws. I seems like such a basic human right that people should be given notice of employment termination, or at least pay in lieu of notice. Also seems like a no brainer that breaks and leave should be provided. Same goes for employee obligations.

Scene from "Half Baked" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578045)

It's A Business Transaction (2)

Bob9113 (14996) | about a year ago | (#44578051)

Leaving your company, whether by your choice or theirs, and whether amicable or hostile, is a business transaction. It should be treated as such.

They have some value that they will get out of concessions you make, and you will get value out of some things that they offer. There is some extent to which you can trust them to be honest, and some extent to which you may believe they will be generous. The corporation has those same perceptions of you. You're both adults, sort of; you can have a frank discussion about the matter without getting hurt or angry.

So talk to them about it. Start with this question; "Does the company have a standard exit package under these circumstances?" Now you're not forcing the issue, and you're signalling your boss to think in business terms. Then you just talk through what each of you thinks is fair.

I've walked out with no notice... (1)

The Lesser Powered O (20857) | about a year ago | (#44578055)

I was working for a startup. We were in the midst of some regulatory and financial problems that were rather public. The president of the company asked what I though of a press release the new owners wanted put out. I told him that I didn't work for people that were that disingenuous.

As I was walking out the door 20 minutes later, I dropped my letter of resignation on his desk.

So I guess it was actually 20 minutes notice...

It differs. (0)

betterprimate (2679747) | about a year ago | (#44578059)

You only care about your employer as much as they care about you.

Really? Is this guy for real? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578061)

I've never heard of a company giving a two-week notice to an employee that's being laid off or fired.
Ummm... when you're being fired it's because you've done something unprofessional and escorting you out the door at that time makes sense. Why the fuck should an employer give someone two weeks pay when they can't handle their day to day tasks in a professional fashion let alone let them stay in a position that they could use to further degrade their environment?
As for layoffs? My personal experience working for a fortune 20 company for over a decade is that they've always gave a few months worth of notice to anyone left go on good terms, offer help with job placement and give generous severance pay. Maybe you have always just worked for shitheads. Oh, that's right... corporations and big evil wolves that will rip out your soul and shit you out after they're through with you, right? That hasn't been my experience.

Two weeks of paid leave! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578067)

Where I work giving 2 weeks notice results you being escorted out of the building and being given two weeks of paid leave about half the time. You might as well do it!

Hurray (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578069)

Winning the lotto and not needing to work.

Kind of a timely topic (1)

jdkc4d (659944) | about a year ago | (#44578075)

At my current employer, they require 4 weeks notice. This gives them the time to repost your position, start interviews etc. For much of my time here, when in a position that I enjoy, I have felt that 4 weeks, though long is ok. You never know where you are going to end up in, in life and having the ability to go back to a place you have worked before might happen. On the other hand, I have also been in a few positions that I did not like, where I have been treated unfairly, and have many times contemplated being able to give less notice when changing positions or jobs. I think you need to ask yourself what are the benefits of doing either. Clearly if your new position comes with a higher salary, you probably want to move quickly, but are you going to be screwing over your current employer? What about your coworkers? What about friends you have made?

maybe you should ask (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578079)

the new york times, I heard one of their admins just left...

Want some fun ? (2)

Yoda222 (943886) | about a year ago | (#44578085)

It's just 3 months if you are in France.

Apples and Oranges (1)

selectiontimeout (1443281) | about a year ago | (#44578089)

At least in the US, most companies, out of fear of getting sued, will only confirm dates of employment. Giving a 2-week notice is a really professional courtesy to your fellow coworkers, to facilitate any transition of work.

Best to just start working at the new place (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578095)

and see how many days till your old employer calls.

Ask Slashdot: What are some good ways to commit career suicide?

captcha: implicit

Is this relevant? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578097)

OP is disingenuous. The vast majority of people end employment for one of three reasons: one - found better job, don't need a reference and the notice i give is determined by the new contract. two - layoffs/termination with little or no notice given by the employer in most cases. three - leaving the job for personal reasons/children/etc and may not need or care about a future reference. For the other....1%? Is that who we're talking about here? If the OP is suggesting that he/she wants to quite but has no future plans laid out yet...then get that part figured out first.

Never give notice. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578101)

Ever. Well, except the next day.

Drag it out a few days by calling in sick. Or taking your vacation time and never come back.

Your employer will never give you one. Why do something that your employer refuses to do.

captcha: briefed

It's not all about you (2)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | about a year ago | (#44578109)

Even if you don't care about the reference... How about showing your coworkers a little common courtesy? They're the ones who are going to be picking up the extra work you're no longer doing - give them some time to plan.

Funny (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578119)

Wow..in our country you're obligated to two MONTHS Notice! It's a hell to change jobs or get new employees.. So freaking slow..

You should give 2 weeks (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578125)

The question is who wants a reference from whom? The Employee wants one from the employer, not the other way around. Doing anything at the end-of-job time to make you look better, is for the best. The HR department will be calling your old jobs, to see how you handled leaving them.

Here in the UK... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578129)

My job has a contractual notice period of 3 months. If I hand my notice in I am expected to work a further 3 months before I can leave, this is so I have sufficient time to hand over my responsibilities and instruct any replacement.

Counter to that if the firm sacked me without notifying me before hand of any problems with my work I could take them to a tribunial and seek compensation or reimployment.

Guess socialist Europe does things differently from the colonies.

Surreal discussion (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578139)

In Norway, we have 3 months notice (both ways). By law. If you have worked for a long time (10+ years) at the same place, it's even more.

Some problems with just walking out. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578147)

Leaving without notice is not necessarily a good idea.

1. You risk burning bridges. OK, you might not want to go back and work for that employer again; but you never know what's around the corner.

2. References. Depending on the exact legal requirements where you are, an employer is generally allowed to give a true reference (even if it is bad, provided that it can be substantiated). In particular, they are potentially allowed to state that you would not be eligible for further employment with them.

3. Liability. If you don't give the notice specified in your contract of employment (or default contract according to local law), then your employer can sue you for any direct losses. E.g. if you are scheduled to do a specific job for a client, and you leave without notice, forcing your employer to find an contractor to replace you; then you could be sued for the costs of finding and employing the contractor (minus any salary that you would have earned). This would only be the case in some specialist fields not in a "commodity" job.

4. Bonuses and other payments. Your employer may have agreed to pay you for unused vacation time, etc. If you leave without notice, you potentially forfeit these discretionary payments.

5. Salary. If you give notice, while your employer is entitled to ask you to stop work and go home, they remain obliged to pay you for your notice period (or the contractural/default period if less) - i.e. don't expect to get 6 months paid, by giving 6 months, if your contract is for 2 weeks.

1 month for my layoff (1)

Luciano Moretti (2887109) | about a year ago | (#44578151)

When I got laid off, I got one month notice, plus severance, plus vacation payout. When I've voluntarily changed jobs I've given 2 weeks notice. Note that when you give your 2 weeks, be ready for them to escort you off the property. People used to joke any time someone cleaned their desk and took home excess personal stuff that they were about to give notice.

Layoffs are different than "Terminated with cause". If you're terminated with cause you shouldn't expect to get a reference anyway.

Not a matter of curtisoy. (1)

Xeno man (1614779) | about a year ago | (#44578155)

Giving notice is not just a matter of professionalism but legally required both ways depending on state and country. When your fired or laid off, you get 2 weeks severance pay. That is your notice. When you quit, you also need to give 2 weeks notice to allow your employer to find a replacement or shift responsibilities. If you just up and quit and that causes the company to lose money, they can successfully sue you to reclaim those losses. Now most service positions will have a hard time showing a court of law then when you quit your McDonalds job that McDonalds suffered any sort of loss because you weren't there, so most businesses won't go after former employees.

If you choose to, it boils down to the type of job you have. If you are just a cog in a machine that doesn't respect you, do what is best for you. Did you know that some people actually feel guilty about this type of shit?

When you're making off with... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578171)

TerraBuckets of classified data. Just make sure you have a solid escape plan so you don't get stuck in a foreign airport for an indefinite period of time (or killed - that would be a bummer too... not to mention that you'd become pretty unemployable).

Notice may be in the form of two+ weeks pay (1)

pipedwho (1174327) | about a year ago | (#44578177)

If your are being layed off/fired your employer is still required to give you 'notice'. However, they may opt to pay you for the duration of the termination notice period in lieu of requiring you to keep working during that time.

IMO, it is far more useful to be out looking for work for a few weeks than working for your soon-to-be-ex employer over that time. (You're still being paid.)

So no, an employer escorting you to the door with what seems like no notice, is still going to pay you for the termination period (at a minimum of two weeks or more depending on your contract and state laws) plus any obligated redundancy requirements. You just won't be 'working' on their premises.

Here in E.U... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578191)

Here in E.U. it depends on the contract. In most cases I know of both sides (employer and employee) are obliged by law to notify the other side in advance about temination. E.g. in Poland for employment contracts as regulated by labour law it's from 2 weeks to 3 months, depending on the type (duration) of contract. If you come back from lunch to find your room closed and locks changed, that usually means you're working with secure materials, you're less trusted than a politicial and by the book you're still employed for the remainder of your contract, enjoy paid holiday leave. And a person not giving a notice may find him/herself in court and paying damages or being reinstated to the post - same (more likely actually), if its the company who's not given proper notice...

Give just enough time to organize farewell dinner (1)

kawabago (551139) | about a year ago | (#44578193)

My boss heard Tuesday morning that Friday would be my last day. He managed to organize lunch on Friday for 150 people from across the country. Of course that was more than twenty years ago when my medical prognosis was death within three months. Obviously that didn't happen.

Just get on with your life (2)

sjbe (173966) | about a year ago | (#44578195)

I've never heard of a company giving a two-week notice to an employee that's being laid off or fired.

I've seen it happen from time to time. Happened to my brother in law actually - he got several weeks notice and severance. Unusual I'll admit but not unheard of. The problem for companies giving notice to someone is that some people don't take it very well and cause problems. I had an employee quite just a few days ago and quietly sabotaged a bunch of stuff as a parting "gift". (nothing really destructive, just time consuming to undo) Most people would be sad to be given notice but would behave like adults. The problem is you can't tell who the ones are who will take it REALLY badly are ahead of time.

Once you're reached the point where you know it's time to leave, under what circumstances would you just up and walk out or give only a short notice?"

If you are leaving because you can't stand the place and there are no contractual or financial constraints on your behavior then just leave and get on with your life

There are only two reasons to give two weeks notice. 1) You are leaving under amicable terms, have the time to spare and out of courtesy want to ease the transition for your former employer OR 2) You need the cash and can't afford to walk out now. Two weeks is almost never enough time to really be of any meaningful benefit to an employer and many employers will escort you out of the building the moment you put in notice anyway. Unless you had a really close and long relationship with your boss/colleagues then you probably aren't going to be asking for a reference in the future anyway so what is to be gained by giving notice? Maybe it gives you a warm fuzzy feeling inside but the feeling isn't going to be reciprocated in many cases. The business will continue without you and in most cases you giving notice just gives both parties a couple of uncomfortable weeks together.

A Second Thought (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578199)

Depending on the type of position you hold within the organization whom you work for it may be required that you do so. But in some cases you have individuals that may have a certain level of access that could be considered dangerous. Thus giving a notice is not necessary as they will end up escorting you out the door. If you end up being one of these people that have this level of access or knowledge. Then the best thing to do is to rap up all the details of your duties so that if someone else replaces you that they will be able to understand what it is you do there. But even then this is a certain level of privileges that you are offering. Your manager should already have this information at there disposal. At no point from the time you are no longer an employee with that organization should you offer them any help with the work you have done, unless they are paying you a retainer fee. But I will have to agree with a statement that was replied in this article "If your employer isn't going to give you a positive reference, or has been negligent in their treatment of you or your fellow employees, then your two weeks notice is a privilege that they gave up."

be prepared (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578201)

if you give notice the company might turn around and fire you on the spot so don't give notice if you need to be employed during the notice period. it wouldn't hurt to spend an hour getting familiar with your state's employment laws

Burn all the bridges! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44578207)

1. Burn all bridges
2. ?????
3. Profit


Try three months (1)

Mascot (120795) | about a year ago | (#44578219)

Where I live, three months is the norm. The law stipulates from one to three months, depending on how many years you've been working at the same place, but I have yet to work anywhere that operates with anything but three months notice after the six month trial period.

Reference (1)

jonyen (2633919) | about a year ago | (#44578239)

If you have to provide two weeks notice in order to get a "glowing reference," it's probably way too late for that already.

Cut your losses and move on. Find connections within your network to get another job. Do better at your next job.

I like the easy questions. (1)

sgt scrub (869860) | about a year ago | (#44578263)

...under what circumstances would you just up and walk out or give only a short notice?

When I have enough in the bank not to have to work again.

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