Everyone needs a change sometimes. Whether you are looking to grow your talents, focus on your family, or find that better balance, thinking about a transition can be daunting…but it can also be motivating. Here are some tips to help ease transition, both for you and for those in your circle.
1) Communicate that you need to make a change. In our culture, we often wait until we have secured a new position before sharing our need for transition. In the non-profit world, this can feel especially stressful when so many people depend on you. If you have trust with your boss and/or board, let them know before you are on the way out the door that you are planning for a change. This gives you both the opportunity to explore if there are internal ways to shift things or to plan for when your transition occurs.
2) Make a transition plan for your successor and the organization. Think through who will need to know about the transition, and what is the best way to tell them. Make sure that practices and protocols are documented for the next person. Be sure to also note what is coming up in the calendar.
3) Make a transition plan for yourself. Is it possible for you to take a break between positions? If so, how can you best use that time to relax and renew? If not, how can you plan for success in your next role?
4) Take time to appreciate those you have helped you along the way. While you may be excited for change, your coworkers may be losing a teammate and friend. Be sure to tell them how much they mean to you and share your contact information.
5) Don’t burn bridges. Sometimes the reasons that we transition are painful, but we are all connected. Do what you can to end on a high note and go out with grace.