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Stealth retirement and going quietly into that good night.
Old 03-17-2018, 08:28 AM   #1
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Stealth retirement and going quietly into that good night.

Over the last few weeks I decided to celebrate my 64th birthday by retiring. Iíve come to grips with disconnecting with the thought that your job is your lifeline. A week ago my Buddy Bill said ďyou want to retire when you are still healthy and can enjoy itĒ. It wont be an early retirement by the standards of the readers here but it will be for so many who have no hope of ever retiring.

I wanted to build a separate pile of ready cash to cover the first year of healthcare Roughly $35K. That was done long ago, the sonís tuition is also covered. The next 4 months wedding money for the daughter. There are no more excuses.

Iíll make sure my personal items easy fit in a single duffel bag. On a Friday in Mid July Ill just quietly fill it and leave- Then Ill give notice Monday and work from home until my official date. Iíll drop a very brief email to a few of my buddies thanking them for their support.
Iíll pass on the retirement luncheons

I came to the firm 35 years ago quietly - Iíll leave the same way.

Care to share how you did it? Any advise/thoughts?
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Old 03-17-2018, 08:51 AM   #2
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Congrats Ray!

I kinda knew when my retirement was ~2 years out. I gradually emptied my cube. By the time I was a year out, my cube was spartan except for a couple plaques and certificates that didn't mean a lot to me.

I gave my boss 9 months notice because: a) my position was unique and would need time to backfill; and b) I was hoping to snag a buyout.

I left without the proverbial "email." I called a few colleagues in other regions, and stopped by a few cubes/offices and said my goodbyes.

There's only a couple guys I meet up with for a beer occasionally. I was never in to mandatory fun or team dinner crap. I'm enjoying retirement and don't miss any aspect of work. My hobbies fill my days (when I want them to).

Yup. Get out while you can and enjoy the best chapter of your life!
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Old 03-17-2018, 09:07 AM   #3
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Ray, I left with little fanfare, too. I gave my boss 1 month's notice although it was only 9 working days because I worked only 2 days a week at the time. On my last day, I had no luncheon (I declined it) but my best friend/coworker took me out.


After a short gathering at my desk in the late afternoon, at departure time I packed my personal items into a large tote bag and left. Nobody walked with me. I dropped my ID card off with the guard in the lobby (I needed it to exit the turnstiles) and began my long, tiring commute home for the last time.
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Old 03-17-2018, 09:15 AM   #4
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I'd think I'd owe the boss & people I feel for face-to-face departure time, even if only the day before leaving. People tell me I'm cold.
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Old 03-17-2018, 09:25 AM   #5
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It’s strictly a personal choice. Some people enjoy a big fanfare, some hate it, and everything in between. IMO it should be whatever the retiree prefers. Whatever YOU prefer.

I declined a big Corporate bash to my COO’s dismay, and the traditional local pizza going away party we always held. But I did have a nice upscale dinner with my 8 closest co-workers the night before and cake for everyone on the afternoon of my last day.
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Old 03-17-2018, 09:30 AM   #6
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I left various jobs and many were like mini retirements,
  • a party or company lunch,
  • the farewell wishes,
  • the goodbye email,
  • packing up my stuff,
  • dropping off the badge
  • and being walked out the door by the boss.
I never had the long stint, and now walk away like Clint into the sunset..
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Old 03-17-2018, 09:30 AM   #7
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I work for an organization that makes too much fuss over retirements and farewells. It looks like the only way to avoid it completely would be to get fired, which doesn't seem to be worth it.

Think I'll try to minimize it, and just grin and bear what I can't.
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Old 03-17-2018, 09:47 AM   #8
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Congrats Ray,

I left with little fan fare also and never regretted that decision. I was on the road for most of my career and worked alone most of the time. I said my goodbyes to my favorite manager and fellow employees. I maintain contact with those same people to this date.

Hope you enjoy the retirement,

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Old 03-17-2018, 09:49 AM   #9
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I gave 9 months notice and slowly took things home that I considered personal. Close to the date my manager was going to do a bit of a "roast" at an out of town group meeting. The meeting got cancelled, but they never made another plan for my departure so it came and went quietly. 2 of my co-workers took me to lunch.
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Old 03-17-2018, 10:09 AM   #10
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It took me a year to slowly clean out and bring home my stuff.

But to the point of going quietly, that's what one of my former bosses did. He really, really didn't want any fanfare. Those who'd worked with him, and respected him, for decades felt somewhat cheated.

No idea what's right for you and your co-workers. But consider that a going-away party can be as much for those left behind as for the person leaving.
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Old 03-17-2018, 10:57 AM   #11
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Congratulations on your upcoming retirement, Ray.
I, too, left as quietly as I could. I did have a luncheon with co-workers on site, but declined management group and big fanfare through the organization.
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Old 03-17-2018, 11:20 AM   #12
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Lol I left when Dupont gave me my "please go away nicely" package. I did go out to dinner with my coworkers but it was a low keyed affair at Friday's. I had worked with these folks for 25 years.
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Old 03-17-2018, 11:45 AM   #13
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Being in the military, it was difficult to do a "stealth departure". Thankfully, my co-w*rkers were very few in number and they knew I didn't want to do a ceremony (fairly common in the military when you retire) or anything close to it. We did do a lunch (all 5 of us!), but we did lunches fairly often, so it wasn't anything special. Since my official retirement date was way in the future, my last official date was unknown to everyone except my immediate boss.

It just so happened that as I was crossing the flightline to my car on that last day, my boss was coming in and had all my retirement "goodies" (flag, certificates, etc) in hand. He asked if I wanted them then or if I would be back to get them later...I took them then and didn't look back.

The most treasured thing from that last day was this picture...
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File Type: jpg Departing (1).jpg (275.1 KB, 100 views)
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Old 03-17-2018, 11:51 AM   #14
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Ray, you expect to pay 35k for one year of healthcare?
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Old 03-17-2018, 12:31 PM   #15
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rayinpenn -- i like your thinking! I am also trying to do a stealth exit. I can't do the email notice and then never show up in the office again. But i do plan to get down to a roller-shopping-bag (duffel-ish size) for personal items to take out on the last day. I already started taking home personal items and professional materials that i want to retain but don't use now, but may want later -- in that second career i'm going to have - hahaha (sounds distasteful to me now but i might). I so want out of the corporate retardation (as someone on the 2018 board called it). I just logged in for a quick, hey i was out sick Friday and what do i see but some administrative process change announcement (which is significantly minimal!!) followed by everyone in so called management back slapping everyone about what a great job and how great its all going to be. The work product is so minor in my mind, like it's part of your j-o-b, that i am stupified by the fanfare. This is what organizations have come to -- cheer squads. Ugh. Not sure i can make it to June, but if i do, i'll be exiting with a one month notice to upper manager (the only on i know at all) and then individual conversations with a handful of colleagues that i don't want to feel left in the lerch from my exit. Some of my colleagues see how overqualified i am for the job i'm in and won't be the least bit surprised. There may be those conversations as well.
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Old 03-17-2018, 02:15 PM   #16
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Shortly after we downsized our home I told my boss that I would be leaving, but that I was flexible on when as I wanted to leave on good terms that both the firm and I were happy with. He told me that I would be missed and left the rest up to me. I informed some of our key practice leaders that I worked with closely, and I worked out a date with HR. I wanted to use up all my unused vacation before leaving, but HR pushed me to have my leave date be a couple weeks earlier, which was fine. As it was, I ended up on payroll on vacation for about 5 weeks after I stopped working. Near the end, my boss arranged a nice going away party... flew me and DW to NYC for an overnight at the Waldorf Astoria and a open bar and appetizers at a pub near the office where probably 50 or so people who I had worked with over my 13 years with the firm stopped by to say goodbye. A couple days before I had to turn in my laptop, I sent out a nice email to my soon-to-be former colleagues saying goodbye and thanking a handful of important people during my tenure with the firm and giving them my new contact details. It was all very nice.
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Old 03-17-2018, 02:44 PM   #17
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...rage, rage at the dieing of the light!
I left pretty queitly, but did go the break room where my office mates had a cake for me.
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Old 03-17-2018, 03:06 PM   #18
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I didnít start the clean out early enough. I had a large office and was lugging crap the last day. Office had a lunch out with the ďgroupĒ for the company trinkets and a bottle of Fireball. The big bash to follow? Didnít like the idea but shamed into it. Sadly (but fortunate for me) the hosting couple gained emergency legal custody of a 2 year old grandchild from out of state. We called the party off. I had a blast with colleagues who were flying in from out of state. We winged it and it was fun. Both parents of the grandchild were professionals who completed rehab for opiates and meth. Grandchild returned. Rayinpen: pack out early. Stealth isnít easy to pull off. A couple of years from now I expect itís a story you wonít even think of, except here.
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Old 03-17-2018, 03:17 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by Teacher Terry View Post
Ray, you expect to pay 35k for one year of healthcare?
When you add up unsubsidized premiums at age 64 and out of pocket expenses--yes, it could be that for a couple. Not likely for a single.

In our area, the lowest priced bronze plan for a couple, age 64, is $1920/mo, or ~$23K per year, with an out of pocket maximum of $14K--so the totoal is over $35K/year.

This is why I "unretired". And frankly, I hate it.

Next time I retire, I'm going as quietly as possible. And it will be final--no doubts.
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Old 03-17-2018, 03:29 PM   #20
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I always figured that the retirement parties were for the people left behind (like wakes), so why not let them have one for you. So I did. It was fairly painless.
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