There's a certain dignity in quitting. Whether you're tired of the position, the work place, or just ready to move onto new professional adventures, leaving a job on your own terms can be a nice confidence boost.
That being said, there are bad ways to quit.
While stepping into your boss' office and telling him or her off in spectacular fashion may feel fantastic, remember you're saying goodbye to a future reference, not to mention the connections he or she may have in your industry.
But there's a worse way to quit: Telling off your boss in spectacular fashion while in public. After all, how will future employers view you airing all your grievances to the world? Probably not with open arms.
So, when faced with the question of how to quit, please only live vicariously through these brave souls:
1. Creating a viral dancing video
Marina Shifrin worked for two years at the Taiwan-based Next Media Animation, which produces news videos. But she grew tired of the demanding job and a boss that cared more about speed and 'clicks' than the quality of the product. And so, the 25-year-old quit this past September by making her own video in which content was king. In the video, Shifrin is seen busting a move to Kanye West's "Gone" while subtitles spell out her beef with the company. Watch for yourself:
Of course, the video has garnered over 16 million views, so maybe there's a place for her at the company yet!
2. Mouthing off to customers over the airplane intercom
I don't doubt that being a flight attendant is a thankless job. Most of us don't even like flying, but at least we don't have to manage the incessant demands of our cranky, uncomfortable selves. Enter: Steven Slater.
Slater, you might recall, quit his job as a JetBlue flight attendant in 2010 in a spectacular blaze of glory. After he was hit on the head by the luggage of an allegedly rude passenger, Slater took to the intercom system to blow off some steam. He then grabbed two beers, deployed the emergency chute, and slid down to the runway. While Slater subsequently became a social media star, federal law enforcement were not so impressed. Slater was arrested and reportedly charged with criminal mischief, reckless endangerment, and criminal trespass, to which he pled not guilty. The lesson here? Taper the theatrics when your actions could be classified as a federal offense.
3. Sealing your hatred in plastic
In 2012, a disgruntled Bed Bath & Beyond employee printed his rather unique resignation letter onto merchandise tags. Along with the normal descriptors of the store's Nuwave Pro Infrared Oven, the employee included some colorful personal endorsements for sticking it to the man. The plastic-encased tag included such out-of-place descriptors as "THIS IS FOR FAT F--KS," "MY BOSS IS A PRICK," "I'M QUITTING TODAY." While this employee gets props for originality, his tags could have easily offended passing customers as it likely did his boss. See a photo of the Reddit-found resignation tag here.
4. Bringing in a marching band
Joey DeFrancesco had worked at The Renaissance Hotel in Providence, R.I., for more than three years and was sick of the management. "I hated them and they hated me," DeFrancesco told the Huffington Post in 2011.
To make a spectacle of his resignation, the 23-year-old solicited the help of his marching band mates. In the viral video, half a dozen musicians and a giddy DeFrancesco are seen entering through the employee entrance at the back of the hotel. They wait in a corridor until his boss angrily greets the scene at which point DeFrancesco hands over his resignation letter, waves his hands in the air, and the band strikes up its abrasively loud tune.
5. Getting naked
Not all resignations have to be sour. Perhaps you had a fine time at the office and just want to leave a more memorable token of your appreciation. If that is the case, please do not ever follow this man's lead. After leaving the Belgium software developer Emakina in 2009, YouTube user Joy Mukharji posted this video of himself naked and dancing to James Brown's "Talkin' Loud and Sayin' Nothing." Even if you mean well, please don't do this. Really, no one wants to get that intimate with a co-worker — past, present, or, future. Watch a safe for work version (if you dare):
6. Airing your grievances on a public thoroughfare
In 2011, a Taco Bell manager in Depew, N.Y., was rightfully annoyed that his boss wouldn't give him July 4 off, despite having reportedly worked 22 days in a row. To really stick it to his stingy boss, the manager made his brief resignation letter count, by writing it out on the restaurant chain's sign. In big black letters illuminated by the sign's backlight, the manager wrote "I quit — Adam / F--- you" (click here to see the image). It's an impressive and memorable exit, but it might not be the best introduction to every local employer in a small town.
7. Airing your grievances in a public forum
What's the white collar version of an expletive-laden restaurant sign? How about an op-ed in the New York Times. In 2012, Goldman Sachs executive Greg Smith announced to the world that he was leaving the investment bank, calling it a "toxic and dangerous" environment. Smith explained that profits matter to the bank more than clients and went on to blame the "decline in the firm's moral fiber" on CEO Lloyd Blankfein. The criticism shook the already weakened financial behemoth and Smith was heralded in many circles for his brave departure. He even got a tell-all book deal out of his resignation. But Smith has made an enemy of some very powerful people and, at the very least, can say goodbye to any future on Wall Street. "There's certainly a red flag to any potential employer considering Mr. Smith in the future," one career expert told the New York Daily News. To wit, the former executive is now working for the other side, helping regulators draft rules intended to rein in risky trading.