Retirement: Shaking in my Boots!

by Nettie
(Canada)

I have had big plans to tell my boss that I am retiring in June. I was actually advised to tell him while I am on holidays for 5 weeks meaning that he wouldn't even know until I was on holidays that I am not coming back.


I am feeling that this is not the best way to go because I would much rather help with a succession plan and leave in a more mutually planned way with his involvement for the last month of my employment. We have worked together for over 25 years. I have loved my work and enjoyed it and gave 150% of myself to it.

There was one rotten experience, however, that just happened over the last few months. This rotten experience made me want to carry out the plan above (informing of my retirement during my holidays) and yet now only a few weeks since that experience was over and I received a good appraisal and raise, I am feeling that my plan is not very professional. I am just having trouble getting up the courage to go tell him that I do want to retire and do want to help with succession plan!!

I need to "let go" and I suppose that is what is hard. I can see that I am the older one now and that there is a whole group of younger ones and that I need to move on and let them do this work.

Then I focus on my reasons for retiring: my husband has been retired for 10 years and waiting for me so we can do things together. That is my biggest reason for sure.

I turned 60 now and who knows how long I have. My health is excellent, but still time is marching on.... Life is more than a career that started in 1973. I want to experience other things than what I have been doing (middle management) for 25 years.

So is there anyone out there that can give me some advice please? thank you!

Wendy: I also started in 73, and retired in 2010, at age 55. I had always assumed I'd give a months notice, instead, last minute, I gave a normal two weeks notice.

Oddly enough, NEVER ONCE did my bosses ask me to train anyone or even answer questions on where documents were located! Grin! I would easily have stayed to train someone, but my local government employer always hired months AFTER someone was gone... so I never offered. I had guessed that they would want some direction, or ask me to train staff in some manner... apparently not as they never said a word.

Today, the job is gone...totally different. It's a Human Resources Department that really doesn't "serve" people any more. The weirdest thing I've ever seen, I don't get it, but life goes on...

What I'm trying to say - they may have totally different plans than what you expect... happened to me.

Retire for YOU. Don't be mean about it, just give your notice and work your last days.

One method that might help you if you are having a hard time telling him: write a resignation letter, walk in, hand it to him...

Best Wishes!


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Shaking in my Boots!
by: Nettie

Hi Jeannette, thanks for your reply! I have enjoyed your blog as well. You are definitely an inspiration in your retirement after so many years in a very demanding profession as well.

I like the way you put it to me: Take the High Road.

Thanks again. Let's keep connected because I need to learn from experienced people like you!

Take the high road
by: Jeanette aka postworksavvy

After so many years, why let one bad experience spoil your exit? Take the high road; give your notice; make your post retirement plans!

By taking the high road you build on all the positive things that your have achieved during your professional career. People will remember your contributions and will celebrate your retirement with you.

From your note, it seems you are ready to retire so go in grand style!

From a fellow Canadian, Jeanette

PS see my blog at www.postworksavvy.com

Shaking in my Boots!
by: Nettie

Hey thanks to those that shared comments after reading my submission: Shaking in my Boots?

Guess what? You have helped me turn my title to : These Boots were Made for Walking!

I love Wendy's strength and courage! I laughed about "them sending a car for me," if I retired sooner than whatever the regulations might be.

I also love the two examples from India. The teacher working to the LAST moment, and the Principal asking his most senior staff person to "walk him to the gate".

I might try follow those ideas when I know the time is right (around the corner).

Thank you again!

A way to go ....
by: Retd. Prof. Durgesh Kumar Srivastava, New Delhi India

Retirement of colleagues was a regular thing in the college where I worked for more than 39 years. I recall two particular instances. A party was on to bid farewell to a retiring lecturer. But he was not to be seen. The Secretary of the Staff Association informed us that he was in his class and would come directly to the party. He came in after the class, hands dusted with chalk powder, his register and other papers in his hands and a small group of students following him. He attended to the students, solved their small problems, smiled, patted them on their backs and then came to take his seat on the dais. That was some example of doing one's duty till the last minute. During his farewell speech, his mobile phone bell rang. He listened to the call, smiled and announced..... I have got a re-employment ... this was a call from the hospital .. I have been blessed with our first grandson. There was clapping all around.

The second instance is of the retirement of my boss .... the college Principal, who was to retire 15 days before my own retirement. I had requested him to give me a testimonial for my service record. He had promised but kept delaying the matter. On the day of his retirement, I requested him again and also during the Farewell Function. He assured me that the testimonial was ready and kept in his room.After the Farewell function, I went with him to his room. He made me sit and wait while he finished off his paper work. At 5 pm he got up and showed me his table which was free of all papers. Then he opened the three steel Almirahs in his room. There were no files or papers in these. He had cleared all his work and files. Then he opened the drawers of his desk. All of these were empty .... except one paper, the testimonial that he gave to me. Then he shook hands with all present, and asked me to escort him to the college gate. He said .... You are the senior most employee now. I wanted you to escort me to the gate at the end of my working career. He is always remembered for his efficiency.

DKS, New Delhi, India, 21 April, 2013


Shaking in my Boots!
by: Nettie

Thank you so much! Your comments helped me more than anyone else has to date! How wonderful you are!!! I am so thankful to you. And you were in the Human Resources business, so you really know how it all works.

Can I REALLY just give two weeks notice? Is it true in Canada too? For some reason I thought I had to give longer....

I am so so so glad to be on your website!

Wendy: Nettie, I don't know regulations in Canada... but I always told employees, what IF you don't give 2 weeks notice (Or whatever the case)?
How can they MAKE you come in to work? Really.. are they going to send a car for you? Can they hold your benefits earned? I don't think so... again, I don't know Canada, but...

Bottom Line: Just follow your own gut feelings. You'll know when its right to give notice, you'll know you are ready to walk out that retirement door too!


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