It’s always somewhat awkward leaving a job, whether on good terms and wondering whether you’re making a mistake or on bad terms, wondering how in the world you ended up at that stupid gig anyway. Jared Sandberg had a very interesting column in today’s Wall Street Journal Online edition. The article was titled, “Goodbye, Colleague, Thanks for Leaving Me to Do All Your Work.” He gives examples of employee departures and how the departure was accepted or celebrated or ignored by the company and the remaining employees.

The link to the article is here: I’m not sure if a subscription is required for this article. I have one but I know some articles are free without a subscription.

Mr. Sandberg hit on several truths, one a truly major one: “You learn the upside-down economics of the workplace: that companies are willing to pay more to acquire talent than to keep it or, looking at it another way, that your own company pays and promotes you less than its rival would. And you learn to ask yourself, “What am I still doing here?”

The WSJ online forum was open for this article, the link is: I believe all their forums are free to the public without a subscription. The forum posts to this article are very interesting. I made a post that I am reprinting below, under name WSJ id- CPA41. Yes, I am a CPA.  

Jared Sandberg: So what are the best ways to say goodbye to employees leaving for other opportunities? And what are the worst ways to conduct farewells?

My post:

Joined: 15 Sep 2006
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Tue Apr 08, 2008 12:27 pm    Post subject: Re: Employee Departures

Employees desire more money, longer vacations, etc. but what they really want is respect. I left a prior job and my supervisor’s boss whom I once reported to, told me he heard I was leaving. This was in the restroom while washing our hands in the second week of a two week notice. I was upset that he had ignored me to that point. On my last day, the President came by and said how he enjoyed having me, wished me luck and offered to keep sending me the employee newsletter. He wanted to know if I had any suggestions for them and if I was happy. This restored my good feeling about the company and made me proud once again to have worked for them. What more could a departing employee ask for?

I feel strongly about my post above and if anyone has any comments or experiences of leaving jobs I would be glad to hear them. Many companies are attempting to deal with turnover and to a large extent are clueless about why it occurs. I believe the way you treat departing employees signals to your current employees how you feel about them. Plus, it’s a small world. You may have to do business with the departing employee at some point.

And so this isn’t a totally boring post, here are the lyrics to Jambalaya, written by Hank Williams, Jr., and performed by John Fogerty in 1974 with his short-lived group, The Blue Ridge Rangers (which consisted entirely of Fogerty, he played every instrument).


Goodbye, joe, me gotta go, me oh my oh.
Me gotta go, pole the pirogue down the bayou.
My yvonne, sweetest one, me oh my oh.
Son of a gun, gonna have big fun on the bayou.
Jambalaya and a crawfish pie and fillet gumbo
’cause tonight I’m gonna see my ma cher amio.
Pick guitar, fill fruit jar and be gayo,
Son of a gun, gonna have big fun on the bayou.
Thibodeaux, fontaineaux, the place is buzzin’,
Kinfolk come to see yvonne by the dozen.
Dress in style, go hog wild, and be gayo.
Son of a gun, gonna have big fun on the bayou.