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Going out with a bang
Old 02-09-2004, 05:01 PM   #1
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Going out with a bang

The more I read about other's experience and how much (or little) is required to live on, the more inspired I am to get out even sooner than I had anticipated. After working the numbers over (a hundred times or so), I think it very possible (even probable) to get out at the end of next year rather than the 3 1/2 years I had planned.

As I contemplate that last day at work, I wonder with what grandeur I might exit. I am not at all bitter at my employer or co-workers and feel very fortunate to have had the opportunities that I have had. But I would like to exit with some style none-the-less. I had thought of not officially retiring at all, but rather stay home and see how long they would keep sending the checks before they caught on. Bet I could get 2 - 3 months out of it and then they might let me go with a package (I won't do this, I know, for ethical reasons, but I have thought about it).

Would like to hear stories of anyone who did go out with style.
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Re: Going out with a bang
Old 02-09-2004, 05:17 PM   #2
 
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Re: Going out with a bang

I am not sure that I "went out with style". When I semiretired in 1993, I was running my own company
and just shut it down over about a year. Then in 1994,
I went back to work in an executive capacity, for a much larger company. I kept trying to cut my hours while they
kept trying to keep me on a full time basis. Eventually,
MacArthur-like , I faded away like an old soldier. The parting was amicable. I would have continued on part time indefinitely. They wanted more. I was unwilling to give it. Significantly, their final offer was probably the
best of my life (as far as working for others). Turned it down flat.

John Galt
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Re: Going out with a bang
Old 02-09-2004, 05:30 PM   #3
 
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Re: Going out with a bang

Hiss,

Here is what you could do. If you are sure about this.

Tell your bosses your intentions - that you plan to retire in 6 months to 10 months - Less than one year. Give them the story that you are doing this for their benefit, so they can plan for your exit and make a smooth transition. After you've informed your bosses make sure all your co-workers know as well.

Once you've done this, your bosses are almost powerless and they will not like this at all. They will be reluctant to give you any projects because they cannot hold anything over your head. Once your co-workers find out, your retirement will be a complete disruption to the department.

1 of 2 two things will probably happen. Either you will not be given any more 'difficult' work and your work life will be a cakewalk. The other thing that could happen is that you will be offered a 'retirment' package so that they can get you out of the way. They know they cannot really fire you and they know they cannot get any meaningful work out of you.

The best thing for management is to get you out of the department as it is bad for morale (the others seeing you leave).

They will probably come to you with a 'deal' in about 2-3 weeks after the situation 'festers' a bit. They will have to pay you to leave

The ultimate payback
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Re: Going out with a bang
Old 02-09-2004, 05:42 PM   #4
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Re: Going out with a bang

Quote:
They will probably come to you with a 'deal' in about 2-3 weeks after the situation 'festers' a bit. They will have to pay you to leave
Wow! What a devious mind. That makes my simply not showing up for work seem like a walk in the park.

Actually, now that you mention it, I remember an engineer at work doing exactly that. He was the only one I had ever seen do it. After giving his 6 month notice, the former of the two options you mentioned happened and he essentially had 6 months off.

Although as I said, I am not bitter with anyone at work, one situation that happens over and over again consistently irritates me. As I know most of you who post on this board are also, I am one of the top performers in our organization year after year. What I wouldn't give for one of the many golden parachutes the company has given out. But, as we all know, those go to the poor performers in the organization because management finds it easier "do away with the job" rather than the person. The result is the goofs get all the packages. Makes you want to show up for work for a year and read magazines all day. However, that would make for very long days.
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Re: Going out with a bang
Old 02-09-2004, 05:50 PM   #5
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Re: Going out with a bang

Oh boy did you come to the right place.

About the time I decided to bug out, the company wanted to dump some dead weight and offered a separation package. A years pay, bonuses, acceleration of stock options, benefits and a free loaded computer. After a year I could go back to work there, but not until. Three vp's tried to talk me out of it as I wasnt exactly the target they were looking for, but I assured them I was out of there.

My manager at the time and I were very friendly and it had been a very good year for me and for what I did for the company.

So when he flew in for the "termination", I met him at the office in a hawaiian shirt, shorts, and sandals. Had him drive me to the local sports bar I frequented, made him buy me 3 beers, announced to everyone, many who knew me, that I was in the process of being terminated (he was soundly booed, which he took in a very friendly and positive manner), I signed my papers on the bar, took a small stack of checks for the various items, and had him chauffeur me home.

As good a way as any of going out.
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Re: Going out with a bang
Old 02-09-2004, 06:27 PM   #6
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Re: Going out with a bang

Hiss,

I have only seen one truely stylish retirement. The rest have been agony in waiting.

Announce your retirement within 30 days. After two weeks, send a note to all of a fond fairwell with little or no details about what you intend to do, sign your paperwork, and don't go back into the office or frequent the lunch spots.

My 2 cents.

Kind Regards,

Chris
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Re: Going out with a bang
Old 02-09-2004, 06:34 PM   #7
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Re: Going out with a bang

Wonderful stories but now I feel terrible...I have to admit my co-workers will have the party when I'm gone. Why may be sooner than planned as rumor is that boss doesn't like my working from home...
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Re: Going out with a bang
Old 02-09-2004, 07:08 PM   #8
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Re: Going out with a bang

Hi Everyone:

Just rented a video yesterday called "Office Space". It was hilarious. For all you office workers that don't like your job, this may be the one movie that will get you thinking about early retirement even earlier!

Toejam
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Re: Going out with a bang
Old 02-09-2004, 08:56 PM   #9
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Re: Going out with a bang

Quote:
. . . Would like to hear stories of anyone who did go out with style.
Style huh? . . . I'm not sure what that is, whether I've really ever seen it, or whether you can really insure it without cooperation of your management.

But here is what leaving with integrity meant to me. I wanted to be able to say:

1) Thank-you -- to all the people I worked with who deserved that

2) I respect you -- to the people who deserved that

3) I'm sorry -- to people who I may have let down or failed to do as much for as I would like to have done

4) Good-bye -- to everyone who might need that closure

Your managment and coworkers may or may not make it easy to look stylish, but you have the ability to do the above and feel good about yourself.
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Re: Going out with a bang
Old 02-10-2004, 04:58 AM   #10
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Re: Going out with a bang

Quote:
Hi Everyone:

Just rented a video yesterday called "Office Space". *It was hilarious. *
This may well be my favorite movie of all time. My favorite line of the movie (as closely as I can remember), "It's not that I'm lazy... It's just that I really don't care."

I highly recommend this movie.

-Jay
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Re: Going out with a bang
Old 02-10-2004, 05:06 AM   #11
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Re: Going out with a bang

Hiss:
Appears to me that most posters retire early to eliminate the stress and the constant accountability that can wear you down over time. If you could stay home as long as you think you can without someone realizing you"re gone, sounds to me like you're already semi-retired.
Cutthroat: If your mind is really as devious as your post, my guess is that the folks that really celebrated your retirement was management.
Salaryguru: Stylish!

Regards, Jarhead
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Re: Going out with a bang
Old 02-10-2004, 08:04 AM   #12
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Re: Going out with a bang

SG: You touched upon the CLASSY portion of the exit!

Cut-Throat, you tagged the financially expedient...in fact I used to do this every time I changed jobs, which was usually to a competitor...give the old company a months notice instead of 2 weeks and then take the months pay the next day and head home for a little vacation.

However, there is plenty of difference between CLASS and STYLE...I know the diff because I have plenty of the second and precious little of the former
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Don't give it away!
Old 02-10-2004, 08:42 AM   #13
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Don't give it away!

In my opinion your best bet would be to announce your immediate retirement with minimal turnover time and the rest of it taken as vacation. Leave the office after 48 hours and don't return. In fact, see if you can take an extended sabbatical and retire from there without even coming back. No one will raise an eyebrow when you clean out your desk for those things that you'll use during your "sabbatical".

This strategy gives you an opportunity and avoids two problems. Your "shock & awe" approach may inspire management to make you a better offer to "ease your way" into retirement. Part-time, telecommuting, consulting, all might be suggested as a concrete way of proving that you've been a top performer. You might even get paid to train the whole staff on how to apply your years of accumulated wisdom.

The first problem is that you give away your hand (and your eligibility) by announcing your retirement any more in advance than the minimum required. If management was planning to offer one of those unpredictable buyouts, you'll have missed the chance. The second is that, as mentioned, you risk being marginalized and ignored. You can get more than enough of that at home on your own time!

The second problem is the office farewell. This approach will truly separate your friends from your co-workers. If they want to spend time with you, they'll invite you to a retirement lunch. If it happens a month or two after you retire, then they get to regale a fresh audience with the latest office gossip. No one will be angling for your office or kissing up in the chance that you have something else to give away. You'll be relaxed & mellow, in the perfect stress-free frame of mind to enjoy this appreciation. And you get to sit there serenely and smile with the thought that, unlike them, you have the rest of the day off!

I made the "mistake" of taking a month's "trial retirement" vacation before I decided to retire. I had so much fun that going back to work was a major annoyance.

As for the ceremonial departure, I've watched hundreds of military retirements over the years. Many of them were monuments to ego that occupied the efforts (and fundraising) of the office for weeks. No productive work got done while the caterers were consulted, the ceremony was scripted, the rehearsals were held, the farewell dinners (!) were organized, and the gifts were bought. On "the day" the usual reactions were "Are you still here?!?" and "Retire already!".

Others were triste, almost sad. No one objects to seeing women break a teardrop or two at a time like this-- but when you watch four multi-decade battle-scarred testosterone-drenched alpha-male American heroes blubbering on the stage in one month, it gets a little depressing. Most regarded it as "closure" while I saw it as trauma. I think closure comes when you have plenty of well-rested leisure to reflect upon your accomplishments (and failures) and to set your course for the next stage of your life. You'll never do that while you're in the process of retiring.

So get out at the last minute with no warning and as little fanfare as possible. Soak management for as much money & guilt as you can but don't let them "honor" you with any ceremonies. Clean out your office at 2 AM if you have to.

Here's another surprise. In my two years of retirement I've built friendships with a number of coworkers. It started as a request for a recommendation letter, followed by a question or two, and ended up on my back lanai with a frosty beverage while we worked through the issues. For whatever reason these people hesitated to develop a friendship while we were working in the same office. Politics? Once we were no longer possible threats to each other, friendship blossomed. After all the frustration of work, this has been quite gratifying.
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Re: Going out with a bang
Old 02-14-2004, 06:27 PM   #14
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Re: Going out with a bang

My plan is to announce to my boss that I'm retiring due to an acute medical condition known as "Anal Glaucoma".

I can no longer see my *ss showing up for work. <rimshot>

No class, no style, just wishful thinking.

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Re: Going out with a bang
Old 02-14-2004, 07:56 PM   #15
 
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Re: Going out with a bang

My plan is to announce to my boss that I'm retiring due to an acute medical condition known as "Anal Glaucoma".

I can no longer see my *ss showing up for work. <rimshot>

No class, no style, just wishful thinking


I said I could no longer work for medical reasons...... I was sick of it
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Re: Going out with a bang
Old 02-15-2004, 03:47 AM   #16
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Re: Going out with a bang

Have a party or whatever (sooner rather than later!), and do a big set up for the song you have had composed to commemorate the occasion. Then play the early retirement theme song:

(Music is copyright (c) 1999 by Eileen Quinn and she gave permission for us to post it here. Thanks Eileen!)

Dory36
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Re: Going out with a bang
Old 02-15-2004, 04:51 AM   #17
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Re: Going out with a bang

Quote:
My plan is to announce to my boss that I'm retiring due to an acute medical condition known as "Anal Glaucoma". *

I can no longer see my *ss showing up for work. <rimshot> *

No class, no style, just wishful thinking.
I think if we were giving prizes for the best response, you just won REWanabe!

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