Tips for a Successful Exit Interview…
When preparing for a job interview, there is certainly a lot to consider, and advice in abundance, from tips on the questions asked, to dress code, to undertaking company research. But when you’re about to leave a company, and about to have an exit interview, there seems to be less advice around. Well until now, that is….our guest poster Erin Palmer provides some useful guidance.
Exit Interview Tips and Advice
Many people fantasize about the exit interview as an opportunity to finally tell their soon-to-be ex-employer what they really think about them. In practice, an exit interview usually ends up being fairly perfunctory for both parties. Nothing is ventured; nothing is gained.
However, leaving a job on good terms is critical to building a strong network that will help you find new career opportunities down the line. Doing so requires a carefully planned and well-executed exit interview.
You don’t have to leave the course of the conversation entirely up to your interviewer. Spend some time before the interview thinking about what you want to say and how you want to say it. Prioritize the most important points you want to convey. Jot down notes to keep you on track in what can be, like most interview scenarios, a nerve-wracking experience. Anticipate questions the human resources manager is likely to ask and plan how best to answer them.
Keep It Constructive
The smartest employers use exit interviews to elicit feedback on company policies, procedures and even politics. Offer up observations on the topics broached only if you have something worthwhile to say. This is not the time to grind axes. It is the time to sketch out any brilliant ideas you had during your tenure on how to improve operations. You just may be doing management a favor they will return when you least expect and most need it. Even if your constructive criticisms don’t directly benefit you, they can improve work conditions for those you leave behind and those who come after you. What could be wrong with that?
Help Ease the Transition
Probably the best way to be remembered fondly is to provide your former employer with the tools they need to bring your replacement up to speed quickly and efficiently. This may mean furnishing them with a list of your current projects. When you show the higher-ups that you understand your work continues to be important to the company even after your departure, it speaks volumes about your integrity and professionalism.
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