my medical condition flared up just before an interview, being asked to resign before moving part-time, and more

It’s five answers to five questions. Here we go…

1. My medical condition flared up just before an interview

I suffer from a condition known as vasovagal syndrome. It only flares up occasionally but when it does, it causes frequent blood pressure shifts and fainting spells.

I became symptomatic on my way in for an interview the other day. I was maybe 15 minutes from the interview time when it began, and felt it would seem flaky to cancel so close to the start time. Instead, when the interview began I warned them that I had a minor condition that had chosen this moment to act up and proceeded as planned. I never fainted but, with all the blood pressure changes, I’m sure I came off as a dimwit.

So, I guess the question is this: If this comes up again, how should I address it? Cancel the interview?

I’d say it depends on how off you think you’ll be. If you think you’ll be more than slightly off, I’d reschedule and explain why. (You could say something like, “I have a minor medical condition that on very rare occasions causes blood pressure shifts. It just acted up without warning, and it will interfere with our interview. I’m terribly sorry, but could we reschedule?”)

It’s true that postponing at the last minute isn’t ideal, but you’d be offering a reasonable explanation for why you need to, and I think that’s better than interviewing when you’re likely to be significantly off your game. (That said it’s also true that some interviews that get postponed don’t always get rescheduled … but I think people are likely to be highly motivated to reschedule for an explanation like this. But you’d want to factor that into your calculations on this.)

2. Applying for a job with a partner of my current company

I procured my current job (I work in theatre administration) at Company A in late January, and it is great. It’s a lot more responsibility than I have ever had – essentially an assistant manager role – and I’ve really been excelling at it. Currently, we are partnering with another company (let’s call them Company B) to present a show. Since my first day, my manager has not ceased complaining about how annoying Company B is – how they request far too much, how they check up on everything, that they want sales reported a certain way, etc. My opinions differ, though I have not voiced them as it is not my place to say. I, however, completely understand where Company B is coming from. Tensions continued to heighten when it was found that some things were not set up as they should have been (by my manager) before performances began, some paperwork was not processed, etc, leading to BIG problems close to curtain time. Both of these times, I was the manager-on-duty and made quick decisions that ultimately saved the day(s) and prevented much bigger problems.

Company B has told me again and again how impressed they are with me, and a few days ago, the head of my corresponding department in Company B, whom I’ve become close with, took me aside to say that he was leaving in just a few short weeks. He and another department head were chatting about how impressed they are with me, and they desperately want to consider me for his position, which would begin mid-March. I forwarded my resume to the General Manager, and I have a formal interview tomorrow. The potential job is amazing – I would have my own small staff, year-round employment (exceptionally rare in my industry), be a part of a theatre company I have admired for years, and work with a fantastic group of people.

My qualms are how it would effect my reputation and relationship with my current company. The partnership lasts until mid-April – if I took the other job, I would still be working with my (then-former) coworkers until then. I am never one to burn a bridge, but I also make it a point to form no allegiances or feel as if I “owe” Company A anything. I presented the situation to my mentor, who knows what direction I want my career to head in, and he described it as a “no-brainer”: to take the job. What are your thoughts?

Well, unless your current employer is extraordinarily dysfunctional and toxic, they’ll be disappointed that you left but won’t torpedo their relations with Company B just because you went to work for them. Even if they’re secretly seething and thinking terrible things about you (which probably won’t happen), it would be really unusual for them to burn the bridge with Company B by letting it show. (And frankly, if they are that dysfunctional, that’s just all the more reason to leave without looking back.)

3. Being asked to resign before moving part-time

My mom has recently spoken with her employer about moving from full-time to part-time. They approved of her request and the conditions of her part-time duties. This is supposed to go into effect on May 1. Today, she was asked to complete a letter of resignation from her full-time position and was asked to NOT mention anything in the letter about moving to part-time. I’ve worked for corporate companies for 20+ years and have never heard of anyone requesting this type of letter by HR. In most circumstances after the arrangements have been made, an offer letter is usually given to the employee. Since the offer has not been made in writing, I’m very skeptical of her completing this request. Can you please advise if this is normal or if she should proceed with caution?

Doesn’t sound normal to me. She should ask them why they’re instructing her not to mention the move to part-time in the letter, and she should ask to get the part-time position confirmed in writing before she resigns her current position. And frankly, even after that, I’d still be wary of writing a resignation letter (since she’s not resigning, just changing her hours, right?) and — if she decides to write the letter anyway — of leaving the move to part-time out of it. My worry would be that if they revoke the part-time offer (which they can do at any time), they’d then have a letter from her resigning her job that could be used — hypothetically — to deny her unemployment benefits.

That said, it’s entirely possible that nothing nefarious is going on and this is just some sort of bureaucratic silliness. But she should find out what it’s all about before resigning in writing.

4. How long should I wait for this job offer?

I managed to land a job interview at my dream company for a position that I initially thought was a bit of a stretch for me. The interviews went really well and I was invited to participate in a “faux project” with the potential new boss to see how well we work together. The project couldn’t have gone better and the company informed me they would be extending an offer to me. They took the job posting down at this time, so it seemed like all signs were good.

That was 5 weeks ago! I followed up three weeks ago and was told they “still wanted to hire me” and they were “just going through formalities.” I’ve put my job search on hold (I needed a break anyway), but not sure how much longer I can hold out.

The last email I received sounded like they would reach out to me when they had news and I needed to wait to hear from them. However, I’m antsy and want to reach out again but I don’t want to seem like I’ve been waiting around for them to make an offer. Do you think it’s appropriate to reach out again? I just don’t know when I should move on from this.

Move on now. Assume you don’t have an offer (because you currently don’t), and proceed the way you’d be proceeding if you knew this wasn’t going to work out. This might come through or it might not, but right now it’s not, and that means that you need to assume it never will.

As for reaching out, if they want to hire you, they’ll contact you. If you really want to follow up again, mark your calendar to check in with them one more time in a few weeks, but put it out of your mind until then and proceed from the assumption that it’s not going to come to fruition. Let it be a pleasant surprise if it does work out rather than an unpleasant surprise if/when it doesn’t.

5. A website I worked on won an award after I left — can I include it on my resume?

Recently, a marketing agency I worked at last year won an award for a website project I was part of during my time there. The award was for design, but I did the copywriting for the website, as well as a lot of back-end account management work. Can I still put the award on my LinkedIn profile? And if so, what do I say about it? The same site won an award last fall and I included that on my profile, but that was a short time after I quit the agency, not months later.

Sure, as long as you’re sure that the award was given for the version of the site that you were involved with (and that significant changes weren’t made to it after you left). Assuming that it was, you could say something like, “Did X and Y for website that went on to win the prestigious ABC Award.” (Don’t say it’s prestigious if it’s really not though, since that can backfire on you among people in the know.)

{ 75 comments… read them below }

    1. Dan*

      AAM should have an autoresponder that automatically forwards the “dream job” post to anyone who writes in and mentions “dream job.”

  1. De*

    As for 5, I’d leave it off. As it was for design, it would make sense for a webdesigner to include it, but it doesn’t in my opinion fit for copywriting and account management.

      1. OP #5*

        I was not, but it was a big project for the 12 person agency to take on, with me as the solo copywriter and one of two account people to work on it. The work involved a LOT of back-end stuff such as working in spreadsheets for weeks, as well as me coming up with the package names for the client to approve.

        1. AmyNYC*

          Maybe not put the award on your resume, but this would be great to bring up when interviewers ask about something you’re proud of from the previous job.

            1. Jen RO*

              Then maybe you can put it in that “Projects” section on LI, and explain what you did on it? (I’m not sure how the section works, I’ve only seen it on others’ profiles.)

              1. OP #5*

                My projects area has freelance work and this was at a full-time job. The last award for the same site is under that job to distinguish between the freelance writing I do and the full-time copywriting job I had.

  2. Char*

    #3: I think it’s really odd that they don’t want your mum to mention that she’s moving on to part time? Is that to avoid tax or what? I would really get suspicious if I were in her shoes because writing that resignation letter could easily mean that your mum might no longer have a job (even part time) with the company. It’s better to play safe than sorry, so ask then to confirm the part time position in black and white before writing such a letter.

    #4. I understand this dilemma but you should just continue to apply for jobs because other jobs may take long. Who knows, a better candidate might pop up and they decided not to hire you? Nothing is guaranteed.

    #5 I think you SHOULD put it on LinkedIn as one of your achievement but state clearly what you exactly do. While it is a design award, it doesn’t mean that words and user experience don’t contribute to enhancing the design and such. And building a website is team work and I really think you deserved that! :D

    1. OP #5*

      Thanks for your input! I was planning to detail what I did for the project instead of making it seem like I did it all myself. The site received an award in the fall, like my orig. post said, and I detailed the award was FOR design, but it’s clear I was on the copy side of creative.

      I appreciate your comment! Even though a lot of people might think copy doesn’t contribute to design, if you don’t have good copy, you just have a site with pretty images and no meat-n-potatoes.

      1. Char*

        Yes, I totally understand how you’re feeling since I was an English major and I have been writing so much, be it for work or studies. It’s just sad that people only see design from the digital art side (such as logo) etc, without considering words (e.g. amount of words on the site could affect the design) and the website is nothing without words, and of course other things like layout, interface (which is usually done by developer) etc.

        1. OP#4*

          I did! I most likely would never allow myself to wait that long again, but I’m glad I trusted my gut instincts here.

  3. Juli G.*

    3 seems very strange. When we have an employee move to part time, the manager and employee draw up an agreement they both sign that explicitly details the nature of the part time arrangement because we want all of it on file.

  4. plain jane*

    #3 – by formally resigning, your mom might be losing seniority/tenure. If they decide to let her go because part-time doesn’t work for them, they might try to re-set the clock when calculating her severance. I’d ask them to do the part-time switch in writing with a promise of keeping tenure before writing a resignation letter.

    Could it be that they’re seeing the part-time as a contract position and that is why they want the letter?

    1. RubyJackson*

      +1. This is exactly what came to my mind. Bumping rights. She’ll lose seniority over people who have been at the company fewer years.

      1. Jessa*

        That’s what I thought too. It puts her in a very bad position because that resignation can be used against her in SO many bad ways. Even if they don’t intend to, bosses quit, get reassigned, and that letter is out there forever. And yeh I think it’d set the clock back on anything to do with seniority/time with company. Whether that’s insurance or leave or anything else. It might even set her pay back to “new hire pay,” instead of “person who has been there x many years and has had raises etc.”

    2. MmeMarie*

      This would be my concern as well, that they might take the resignation and use that to reset pay scale, seniority, severance or whatever other things she might have gained over the years working there.

    1. Fiona*

      Ooh, interesting. Although you’d think if they just wanted his/her work product, they wouldn’t string him/her along with the promise of an offer. (Or maybe they would!)

      1. Gilby*

        My thought too.

        It is almost like they are stringing her along because they did use her but can’t say it of course and saying ” We are not hiring you” looks bad.

        Maybe they are hoping she gives up and they don’t have to deal with it anymore.

        I would be curious at the scope of the project. Was it something where they picked your brain A LOT ? Used your idea’s for their gain? How much time did you invest?

    2. OP#4*

      It was indeed! As a designer, I was very diligent to make sure it was indeed a fake project before proceeding.

  5. kas*

    #3. I definitely would not write a resignation letter. I worked for a company that required you to interview again to switch to full-time or part-time and even they didn’t require you to resign, they just changed the hours. Something doesn’t seem right, especially the fact that they don’t want any mention of the part-time position. If I HAD to I would get the new hours in writing first and submit the letter mentioning it anyway and maybe add that it is on the condition of the part-time hour switch.

    1. FiveNine*

      Yeah, I’m hesitant to comment because it’s so outside the scope of what I know and the OP’s mother is in such a delicate job-balancing position. The only thing I do know is that internal transitions at every place I’ve worked do not require a resignation, and that this on its face seems unsettling for all sorts of reasons.

    2. KJR*

      As an HR person AND someone who switched from full time to part time, I have never heard of this either, the whole deal sounds very suspect to me. Another point to consider is that many states’ unemployment offices would look on a letter of resignation such as this one as enough evidence to deny unemployment if it ever came down to it.

      1. Poohbear McGriddles*

        As the wise Admiral Ackbar once observed, “It’s a trap!”

        Well, even if it’s just incompetence, there is no way it works in your mother’s favor.

  6. marty*

    “…they’d then have a letter from her resigning her job that could be used — hypothetically — to deny her unemployment benefits.”

    If they are like so many of our adored “job creators” – this may not be so hypothetical.

  7. Mike C.*

    #3 This sounds incredibly sketchy to me. There’s no reason that a company needs a letter of resignation (outside of a previously signed contract requiring one). I really, really feel like they’re trying to pull a fast on on your mother.

    “Oh look, it’s layoff time and it just so happens we have this undated resignation letter, oh well, no severance/unemployment for you!”

    1. some1*

      “There’s no reason that a company needs a letter of resignation (outside of a previously signed contract requiring one”

      Seriously. People quit jobs all the time by just not showing up anymore. Obviously, it’s not necessarily a good idea, but it happens.

  8. Poohbear McGriddles*

    #5 – They either have an unusually long hiring process, or that ship has sailed. It’s a shame they kept stringing you along by implying that an offer was coming. My guess is they wanted to keep you on the bench in case their first choice backed out. Their last email sounded like “Don’t call us, we’ll call you”, which is a different tune than they had been singing.

    1. Colette*

      I assume you mean #4?

      5 weeks doesn’t seem that long to me. The last time we hired a contractor, I’m pretty sure we thought she was starting the next Monday for about 5 weeks, but there continued to be snags in the process. We had almost started to assume she was imaginary when she finally showed up.

      1. OP#4*

        It was 5 weeks from when they said they were prepping an offer. It was 3.5 mos total time from first interview to notice of intention to make an offer. Then the additional 5, ultimately 6-weeks before they made the official offer.

        1. Colette*

          In our case, it was at least 5 weeks after we’d made the offer and it had been accepted.

          Five weeks is a long time when you’re waiting, but depending on who needs to sign off on the offer (and their schedule, including vacation, illness, product launches, etc.) it is not as long on the inside. That doesn’t mean you should continue to wait – as Alison said, behave as if you don’t have the job. Besides, if they come back with an offer that is not acceptable, you won’t accept and you’ll need to continue looking anyway.

  9. To OP#1*

    As someone who also has vasovagal syndrome, I know that the way that it represents in different people can be different. But what I know in myself is that when I am in the middle of an episode, my judgment on how ‘ok’ I am can be really off.

    On the other hand, while I’d like to believe that all conditions like this are treated equally – I find that anything associated with fainting (particularly as I’m a woman) isn’t always treated quite as neutrally as I’d like. Therefore, I really like AAM’s response about emphasizing the blood pressure issue rather than the fainting/blacking out.

      1. Jess*

        I’m a little bit curious what the reasoning is for mentioning at this time that it’s an ongoing medical condition. I know my first instinct (as someone who has certain ongoing medical issues) would be to just call and indicate that I had become ill, and could we please reschedule? Personally I’d be worried about mentioning a long-term condition so early on, though I realize that’s a subject of debate.

        1. Ask a Manager* Post author

          Because calling 15 minutes before the interview to reschedule without a compelling explanation will look really bad — like you’re flaky/disorganized. Explaining the reason makes it understandable.

          1. Jess*

            That makes sense. Would you advise differently if one were to have a stigmatized condition? Or a commonly trivialized one?

        2. Zillah*

          In many cases, I would agree with you, but not necessarily in this one. She’s not disclosing something a heavily-stigmatized condition or something that is likely to cause a frequent problem. If one of those were the case, I would definitely worry about disclosing so early on in the process.

          But, IMO, this is kind of the equivalent of calling and saying that there’s a ten car pile up on the highway and you can’t get around them – it’s neither foreseeable nor something likely to happen frequently. If the employer is going to judge you very harshly because of that, are they really someone you want to be working for?

    1. S.K.*

      I’m not sure the specifics of the condition even need to be brought up, especially if you’re AT the interview. I would show up and simply say that a medical condition has flared up, it’s not something that affects day-to-day work, but not something you’d be comfortable interviewing with. A reasonable interviewer will give you a mulligan if you’ve shown up looking presentable, on time, and otherwise prepared. My only caveat would be if this is a job which requires you to give presentations or face high-pressure situations a lot – they may worry that you’ll have a flare-up in those situations. (legally they can’t turn you down for that reason, of course, but it wouldn’t help).

      On the other hand, contacting them 15 minutes before, and not coming in, has a far greater chance of coming across as BS in my opinion. How do I know you didn’t just sleep in?

      1. Fiona*

        I don’t know anything about this condition so I can’t comment on the specifics of whether interviewing while in the middle of an episode is a good idea or not, but I did once lose out on a second interview because I came down with a bug (that sounds so benign for how awful I felt) the morning of the interview, and they were unable to reschedule – it was one of those panel deals so the logistics of rescheduling were against me. So I tend to push the envelope a little – if I’m not in danger of needing to make a rapid exit to the nearest restroom and I’m not contagious, I’d rather go and take my chances than not.

        1. To OP#1*

          I’ve interviewed with colds and such- but having a “full” vasovagal episode in public (fainting) is very unpleasant in that the passing out is often accompanied by full body sweats and possibly, wetting yourself. Having tried to once “soldier on” and having this happen in public was both mortifying as well as very expensive as they (understandably) called 911. It’s hardly the most convincing condition to be in and tell people “I just need some water, fresh air, and a little time”. I presume for someone where this happens very frequently there might be treatments – but it’s largely just unpleasant. Nothing more or less.

          The job may still be lost, but I would be more concerned about having any kind of professional reputation regarding passing out in a cold sweat (not even to comment on wetting yourself). I think it’s more like waking up to the discovery of the stomach flu. Sure – the panel may not be able to be rescheduled – but what good will it do to be the candidate who has to run out of an interview to throw up?

          Again, I think some of my issues about this result in being a woman. Maybe for men it’s more like “I have a condition where I faint, this is how I deal with it, I have it largely under control”. But I feel as a woman there’s something that brings to mind Victorian swooning/having the vapors that I’d rather avoid professionally.

        2. LAI*

          First of all, thanks so much to OP#1 for writing this. I think I have a form of this condition as well but didn’t know what it was called or even that it is an actual condition (I just thought I got light-headed and fainted sometimes).

          However, I can definitely say that I would not be able to interview during an episode. Typically, I have difficulty seeing and hearing, cannot focus on anything, and feel like I’m going to throw up. Fortunately, my episodes usually only last a few minutes as long as I recognize the symptoms and immediately sit or lie down and put my head down.

      2. Ask a Manager* Post author

        I’d explain the specifics (or at least as far as I did in my original wording — not going beyond that) because you don’t want them to speculate on what’s going on. Just saying “medical condition” opens up speculation to all kinds of things. Better to just deal with it matter of factly and close off the speculation.

        If you handle it professionally and are otherwise a polished and professional candidate, they shouldn’t assume you’re lying. (Or if they do, that’s an issue on their own end.)

  10. Lia*

    #4, Sometimes there are bureaucratic snags you can’t do anything about.

    I once took a government job that strung me along like that for about six weeks. Initially, they told me I would start in 2 weeks, so I gave notice at my former job. Then…that turned into another month of waiting. I found out eventually that the hire was delayed because another director had to sign off, and he was annoyed with the hiring manager for a delayed project, so he wasn’t approving ANYTHING from hiring manager office until that project (which had nothing at all to do with me!) got finished. I was really, really annoyed at the whole process, especially because I was kept in the dark the whole time. I did have a great time at the job and learned a lot, but the initial few weeks after the hire made me wonder if I had made the wrong choice.

  11. Positivity Boy*

    #2 – I would absolutely take the new job because frankly, the manager at the current one sounds like a pill. Bitching about everything that’s being asked of them, then failing to do it correctly? Meanwhile the new team sounds positive, productive and appreciative of talent? That seems like a pretty easy choice to me. And even if your current manager tries to tank your perception somehow, it already sounds like the new team sees the value in your work and recognizes that you get things done while your manager doesn’t, so I doubt they’ll give much credence to anything your manager might try to tell them. Good luck, and enjoy the new job!

  12. Artemesia*

    The only reason to ask for a letter of resignation from Mom is to hose her. They want to lay her off, make sure she can’t get unemployment or deprive her of status or benefits she would merit due to her seniority. This is something she should absolutely not sign and she should come back with a request for a contract that details that she is voluntarily moving from full to part time work.

    A letter of resignation with no mention of part time position is just that — a letter of resignation and once they have it, she is over a barrel.

    She has nothing to lose by refusing to do it this way (even if they threaten to fire her if she doesn’t, they are setting her up for that anyway and if they do, she at least has unemployment which will probably be close to what part time work would pay her — she can use the time to look for new part time work.)

    So no signing this but be willing to sign an agreement that details what she has actually agreed to do.

  13. Anon*

    This isn’t particularly related to #5, but just me venting about working on a website. I volunteered to work on an interesting project so I could get some new experience, but mostly to have something to add to my portfolio. Now that the project is over, I find out that I can’t link to the site because it’s not actually public. This would have been good information going in, because screen shots do not really do it justice.

    1. OP #5*

      Ugh, I’ve been there! I’m sorry you’ve had that happen! If it’s for an internal project, though, you could still talk about setting it up and list the accomplishments from it.

      I wrote copy for a sales brochure for a freelance client once and asked for the final PDF file for my portfolio. The client was older and didn’t understand what I was asking, so i didn’t receive it. Sucks when that happens.

      Any chance you can ask for screen shots for your portfolio now that it’s completed? If they liked your work and are using that, they should be happy to provide that.

  14. Another Cat*

    #4: Definitely move on. I was so excited – I had a verbal offer, but after talking a bit, the HR lady volunteered to work on increasing the salary (it was going to be a 20k cut). She said she would get back with me soon, and for a while, I checked in every 2 weeks to hear the same response – they were still running the numbers. She asked me to be patient…haven’t heard from them in over 2 months now.

    1. virago*

      I’m sorry about your experience — it sounds like a frustrating one. I wouldn’t count on them to come through … maybe you dodged a bullet in terms of the overall corporate culture.

      (OP#4 did wind up getting the job. More details here and here.)

  15. KM*

    #3 — I’m in Canada, so maybe it’s different, but I did have one job where I had to formally resign my full-time contract before signing a part-time one. I made sure to write that the reason for resigning was that I expected to sign a new contract for XYZ as previously discussed — I wouldn’t have been comfortable giving them the letter, otherwise. It’s hella weird that they don’t want her to mention the move to part-time. I definitely agree that she should investigate this more before submitting the letter.

    1. Jessa*

      But that’s not the same thing. You were able to put you’re resigning contract a for contract b. It makes sense when you have a contract that you need to do something that ends one to sign another with different terms. They weren’t trying to get you to resign without mentioning contract b.

  16. Anonymous*

    #1 Oh Dear! Hopefully they are human and will understand.
    I was recently on an interview and ended up having a “Bob Costas” eye moment. The winter weather has been aggravating my eyes, especially going from cold to warm heated places, and as a result they begin watering terribly and it looks like I’m crying.

    It happened right in the middle of the interview, my left eye started streaming. I just apologized and dabbed it with a tissue, joking that even though it may look that way, I “wasn’t crying” and just having a slight allergy issue due to the dry indoor heat in winter.

  17. StuckInTheMiddle*

    Does anyone have advice for if you’re a similar situation to #2, but the place you’re leaving might fall apart if you leave?

    There are some major problems with my organization, including its leader, who essentially refuses to put time and money into careful planning of fundraising/strategy or administration, and micromanages and/or subverts others’ efforts to do so. We risk running out of funding for my position in the next few months. Everyone else is essentially hoping I’ll solve all of our problems despite a lack of experience and the organization’s leader keeping their current role. A stable organization I have a good relationship has an opening for a job similar to mine but with less responsibility. In this case, they haven’t offered it, but I think they’d consider me if they thought I was willing to leave (though it’d be a delicate conversation). But for various reasons, that might doom the other organization.

      1. StuckInTheMiddle*

        Thank you for the advice! I’ve been thinking about emailing you about the whole crazy situation of my organization, Alison, but I had no idea how to make it concise. Having #2’s letter to bounce off of was useful.

        I’m really torn because the people hoping I’ll fix this have put a lot of hope and energy into the organization and me, and they’re all wonderful people. I don’t want to ruin my relationships with them by abandoning the organization. But they’re also all volunteers, so they don’t have their sanity/finances riding on this as much, and they waited until a crisis point to act, so it’s partly their responsibility. It’s tricky.

        I guess I should wait until I find out if the other job is a possibility before agonizing too much. I just have to figure out a way to do it without looking opportunistic or making my relationship with the other organization awkward if they’re not interested. So many details!

      1. Ollie*

        I agree. I was in a vaguely similar situation (as a volunteer at a non-profit), where the leaders kept undermining everyone’s efforts to get work done and to fix problems that continued to get worse. Funding got so low that they had to let go their three paid staff members and a lot of volunteers just left. When leadership is bad, an organization can’t do well no matter how much time/effort everyone else puts into it.

        I seriously agonized over leaving since I’d already spent so much time/energy there, but I look back on it now and realize that leaving was for the best (for me) and that staying wouldn’t have made a difference as far as saving the organization went.

  18. Missy*

    A similar thing to #3 happened to me once. I was working in retail, and was approved to reduce my hours from part-time to on call only. The store asked me to submit a resignation letter. I wrote one, turned it in, and didn’t think anything of it. I had fairly steady hours for a few months…until calls from associates asking for coverage just stopped. I ran into another associate a short while later and I mentioned that I wasn’t getting calls anymore. She told me she saw my name on a list of people who no longer worked there. I was never fired, and I never actually quit. My only guess is that someone in HR who was unaware of my approved hours came across my letter and determined I had, in fact, fully resigned.

    Moral of the story? Get clarification and approvals in writing before submitting any sort of documentation that says you’re “resigning”.

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