5 Steps To Avoiding A Disastrous Exit


A strong first impression is the key to securing your dream job. Have you considered how significant your last impression is when it’s time for you to leave?

We recently wrote 5 Secrets to a Graceful Exit for TonyMorganLive.com where we discussed five ways to leave a positive impression as you exit a role. In this article, we discuss five things not to do when exiting your role on your current church staff in order to avoid a disastrous exit and leave as gracefully and professionally as possible.

Things Not to Do:

1. Speak badly. Even if you’re leaving out of sheer frustration, don’t project your anger on to others or assume others need to take your lead. God may be calling you out of a situation, but he may have others strategically placed in that environment to help bring wholeness.

2. Break confidence. Chances are, you’ve learned more than your fair share of people’s flaws, stories, and even the way your organization works. Just because you’re not on that church staff anymore doesn’t mean you’re at liberty to share these things or use them against your former workplace.

3. Leave a mess. It’s simple, but make sure your workspace is spic and span. Clean out all your old candy wrappers, junk business cards and if there are books or items you don’t want anymore, offer them to coworkers or donate them to charity.

4. Steal. It seems obvious, but don’t make any last minute supply-closet runs or stock up on basic office items to get your home office off to the right start. Nobody may notice you kept your stapler and ran 100 copies of your resume before you left, but treat your organization with value and keep things honest as possible. Honor your former church staff.

5. Forget to say goodbye. Disappearing is tempting, especially when you want to avoid questions or long conversations regarding your departure. However, saying goodbye to coworkers and volunteers will show them how much you appreciate them and will leave them with a favorable memory of you.

In addition to these secrets, double-check your organization’s policy on leaving. Do you need to meet with HR and tie up loose ends in regard to health insurance, retirement, and final paychecks? Do you need to leave a forwarding address or email address? Have you discussed your availability with your former supervisor in case any questions arise?

It may be easy to put in a notice, pack up, and leave, but by going the extra mile when you leave a job, you’re not only leaving with a great last impression, you’re showing those around you that they are valued and that you can continue championing each other’s causes for the Kingdom.

What are your tips to avoiding a disastrous exit and leaving a position with grace and professionalism?