The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) projects 1,791,000 students at the bachelor’s degree level will graduate as the college Class of 2013.

Let me write it for you in long form just in case you missed that number. There are ONE MILLION, SEVEN HUNDRED AND NINETY ONE THOUSAND people graduating from College in 2013 in the U.S.

That’s a shit ton of competition. So you start looking for a job, except there is one problem: Looking for a job sucks.

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Exit Interviews are worthless. Yes, I said it. They are absolutely worthless. Exit interviews are your one last chance to burn your bridge within the company. You know all those nasty things you always wanted to say to people while you worked there, well now is your chance to really let it all out. And you get to do it through a confidential processor AKA Human Resources.

HR will make it seem like everything you say is confidential, and no one will ever know you said it except him / her. It’s true, they don’t tell other people *exactly* what you said, but trust me when I tell you that everyone will find out.

Everyone thinks that this exit interview is your last chance for you to let management know that things need to change. Everyone thinks that they are going to be the change catalyst on the *way out* of the company. You’re going to be the hero! The hero that changed the company for every other employee that decided to stay working at their horribly managed corporate job.

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When I resigned from a large consulting company after 4 years of working as a consultant, I sent out my farewell email at the end of the week. The next day, the CEO sent it out to the ENTIRE US Consulting Practice. (A lot of people).

Note: I wasn’t a Director, Partner, Senior Manager or even a Manager. I was a Senior Consultant. I didn’t save the company millions of dollars by inventing a new methodology or product. I wasn’t given any top performance awards or recognized as a global leader within a company.

I can only guess it was because he saw something noteworthy of sharing. In short: I loved working there & it showed in my e-mail.

There are good ways and bad ways to leave a job. This is not a good way:

Below, is the way I did it – with a heart-felt letter. I’ll let it speak for itself.

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I was scared to quit my first real job. I didn’t want to tell my boss that I was leaving. I know she was going to be mad at me. I was leaving for a competitor who was also going to pay me more. I was a traitor. How dare I leave a company for better money. She kept telling me that I was making the wrong decision by leaving and that I shouldn’t be making a decision based on how much the new employer is going to pay me. She was right, I shouldn’t base my decision on that. That obviously wasn’t the reason I was leaving, but she was convinced that was the only reason I wanted to leave.

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[Looking for the book Fire Me I Beg You? You can buy it on Amazon here]
In every situation I ask myself two questions:

  1. What do I want the outcome of this situation to be
  2. What do I secretly want the outcome of this situation to be

For example, at one of my previous jobs, my boss setup an emergency meeting in her office. The title of the calendar invite was “catch up”. It was one of those vague meeting titles that meant one of two things: 1) She wanted to catch up or 2) She was going to lay me off.

The meeting was sent at 2am and it was for 6 hours later at 8am. The moment I got the email, my mind started going wild. What in the world does she want to talk about? There was no description in the email, she surely is going to lay me off. She never sends email this late at night. The company isn’t doing that well, this has to be it. I’m toast.

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