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Would It Be Dumb To Tell My Manager My Plans?
Old 07-08-2019, 08:06 PM   #1
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Would It Be Dumb To Tell My Manager My Plans?

So is it stupid to let my manager at work know *now* that I plan to retire in August 2020 (at the latest)?

I'm the only one on my team who does what I do, and it will be a hardship for them when I leave. My manager has been nothing but fair and honest with me, and extremely supportive, for all the years I've been with him.

I want to let him know that he'll need to plan to train someone else to do what I do so he won't be stuck when I leave.

I can't think of any way this can really hurt me. I'm not interested in promotions, I'm doing just what I need to do to get by at the job, and there are rumors our office will be closing at the end of our lease anyway (we were acquired, and a new company headquarters was built several states away).

Can anyone think of a reason I'll regret telling him now?
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Old 07-08-2019, 08:22 PM   #2
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Not dumb, but not in your best interests.



Your employer has no loyalty to investing time or benefits into an employee they know isn't going to benefit THEM over the long haul. You may like your manager, but telling them that you plan on leaving means your manager is going to see you as superfluous and if there are any layoffs coming, you'll be booted first.



I wouldn't say a peep until at max a month out from YOUR planned departure date you settle on, once you've researched things like health insurance, benefits, 401k matches, etc... and are 100% sure that you could exit that day without costing yourself any money left on the table or having to scramble to get insurance or otherwise be hurt.



Why are you worried about training someone if they'll be closing down your office anyway? Again, wait and see if you still need the time/money to pad things, then figure out the date, give them a few month's notice and/or give a shorter notice but offer extend your last day out a month or two so you can train a replacement if they want you to. Simple, and protects you from getting kicked out early, makes you look like a really nice person to offer.
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Old 07-08-2019, 08:28 PM   #3
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No one is indispensable. Wait until you are one month away. Don't put it out that leaving is on your mind, or put it in theirs.
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Old 07-08-2019, 08:58 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by SoReadyToRetire View Post
So is it stupid to let my manager at work know *now* that I plan to retire in August 2020 (at the latest)?

I'm the only one on my team who does what I do, and it will be a hardship for them when I leave. My manager has been nothing but fair and honest with me, and extremely supportive, for all the years I've been with him.

I want to let him know that he'll need to plan to train someone else to do what I do so he won't be stuck when I leave.

I can't think of any way this can really hurt me. I'm not interested in promotions, I'm doing just what I need to do to get by at the job, and there are rumors our office will be closing at the end of our lease anyway (we were acquired, and a new company headquarters was built several states away).

Can anyone think of a reason I'll regret telling him now?
Not dumb IMO, but a calculated risk with nothing but downside for you. Worst case is that they show you the door but that sounds unlikely and not in their best interest but if you can live with that possibility then go for it.

I understand the feeling and it can be done... the last two jobs that I left had very long lead times... one I gave notice in April and wasn't released until August.... the other I gave a couple of months notice. In the first job I was in a trusted position (reported to CFO) and just kept my head down and did my job and left on good terms.... similar in second job.

It sounds like there is likely to be a lot of turmoil for your boss and colleagues in the new organization anyway, so I'm not sure if your giving him a heads up will help him much.
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Old 07-08-2019, 10:04 PM   #5
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I don't see much of an upside to you telling them earlier.
I would not tell him unless you are financially able to retire the moment you tell him.
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Old 07-08-2019, 10:32 PM   #6
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August 2020 is a long way away. I’m not sure why you would feel the need to give this much notice, even with the most amazing boss. I don’t know your specific situation, but I would assume there is some monetary reason you picked 2020 instead of today. And there are all sorts of reasons/ways that you could be financially penalized for letting them know sooner than is necessary, especially given what you’ve told us about the changes in the organization.

How would you feel if they decide to *mostly* shut down your group and give everyone around you a year of severance or medical, but not you because you’re leaving anyway in a year? Or pull the trigger really for you since they know you’re leaving. Your boss may be a nice person, but megacorps generally are very focused on the bottom line. The one thing you can usually count on is that they will do what’s best for them, not you.
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Old 07-08-2019, 10:48 PM   #7
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In a word, yes. The employer-employee contract has long since disappeared. What is left is a relationship where employers count on and exploit workers’ sense of loyalty and honor to extract your only leverage from you, that is, your end date. With that proprietary information in hand, which you so cheerfully supplied them, they can then plan your termination when it is most convenient for them.

Your employers view you as an expense to be managed and they would kill you in your sleep and sell your organs if they thought the ROI would clear their risk-adjusted hurdle rate. You give them two weeks’ notice when you are ready to leave and you can then negotiate any extension you are comfortable with at that point.
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Old 07-08-2019, 10:50 PM   #8
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July 29, 2020 would be a good day to tell him.
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Old 07-08-2019, 10:57 PM   #9
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+1 to wait and use the regular notice period.

If you want to be extra nice, use spare time to write a "manual" of your most important tasks and routines.

You could even frame it as a safety feature in case you get sick if someone wants to know what you are doing.

Control question: What would the company do to the employees if they could get out of the lease early?
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Old 07-09-2019, 01:05 AM   #10
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Unless you don't care if you work all the way through to August 2020, it would be wise to keep it to yourself. Just do your job, like every other day until it's time to give notice. In fairness to you, that's all you owe your employer.

Business is business. Your manager may not have any say in what the company decides to do once they find out. Once he knows, your manager will be obligated to share it with his supervisor and then any decisions will be out of his hands.

In the workplace, news of future job openings travels fast; and co-workers will treat you, and judge your actions, differently once they know you'll be leaving the team. You may start to be cut out of discussions about topics you won't be involved in, and your contributions to choosing your replacement may be of less value than you hoped.

When telling people in a large organization you are retiring, the law of unintended consequences is strong; and your best intentions could easily create tensions and hurtful internal competition that persist until you leave. Time will pass quickly. Before you know it, it will be July 2020 and you will be safely able to share whatever you want.
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Old 07-09-2019, 03:35 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by SoReadyToRetire View Post
So is it stupid to let my manager at work know *now* that I plan to retire in August 2020 (at the latest)?

I'm the only one on my team who does what I do, and it will be a hardship for them when I leave. My manager has been nothing but fair and honest with me, and extremely supportive, for all the years I've been with him.

I want to let him know that he'll need to plan to train someone else to do what I do so he won't be stuck when I leave.

I can't think of any way this can really hurt me. I'm not interested in promotions, I'm doing just what I need to do to get by at the job, and there are rumors our office will be closing at the end of our lease anyway (we were acquired, and a new company headquarters was built several states away).

Can anyone think of a reason I'll regret telling him now?
In a dynamic environment like your workplace, business need changes, right? You've been a key part, and want to let your good guy manager know your plan a year in advance. Maybe that could work, but other threads report a change in management attitudes after the beans are spilled. I know this to be true.

I'd be really cautious, since your manager may move on, not react the way you think, etc. Keep your wild card safe, and bring it out with 30 days notice.
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Old 07-09-2019, 04:42 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by SoReadyToRetire View Post
So is it stupid to let my manager at work know *now* that I plan to retire in August 2020 (at the latest)?

I'm the only one on my team who does what I do, and it will be a hardship for them when I leave. My manager has been nothing but fair and honest with me, and extremely supportive, for all the years I've been with him.

I want to let him know that he'll need to plan to train someone else to do what I do so he won't be stuck when I leave.

I can't think of any way this can really hurt me. I'm not interested in promotions, I'm doing just what I need to do to get by at the job, and there are rumors our office will be closing at the end of our lease anyway (we were acquired, and a new company headquarters was built several states away).

Can anyone think of a reason I'll regret telling him now?
It sounds like you have a good relationship with your manager now. And you are anticipating that he will continue to be fair and honest even after you have given your notice.

But you mentioned that your company was acquired. That could lead to some changes. Particularly when a company is acquired, reorgs happen, managers are changed, some managers leave.

- Would you regret being assigned to a new manager who prefers not to be fair to short-timers?

- Would you regret missing out on a severance package if layoffs occur?

Give your required notice period when the time comes. Until then, keep your plans to yourself.
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Old 07-09-2019, 05:01 AM   #13
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As a mid level exec over 80 people I felt the same as the OP, and I gave three months notice - it was a horrible mistake. I won’t belabor the details again, but it was a very unpleasant three months with ZERO upside for me. I’d NEVER give more than 4 weeks notice again for even the most important jobs, 2 weeks is often enough.

Most of us like to think we’re irreplaceable, but we’re not. CEO’s, athletes, actors, and others with very unique talents are replaced with little or no notice all the time. If your manager hasn’t provided proper backups for vacation/extended leaves for every position, it’s their own fault. I had some very talented people leave my organization, and the organization as a whole (and customers) hardly suffered at all. Some ex-employees were missed personally, but within a few weeks the ex-employee wasn’t really missed professionally.
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Old 07-09-2019, 05:15 AM   #14
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I would say bad idea. Sorry, but it's true.

What is the company policy ? At the megacorp I left back in 2,000 the policy was " employees who resign with less than 10 business days of notice will not be eligible for rehire "

High level management folks usually have an employment contract, with specific notice requirements, sometimes requiring a year or more. That is not us little folks.
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Old 07-09-2019, 05:16 AM   #15
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As a mid level exec over 80 people I felt the same as the OP, and I gave three months notice - it was a horrible mistake. I won’t belabor the details again, but it was a very unpleasant three months with ZERO upside for me. I’d NEVER give more than 4 weeks notice again for even the most important jobs, 2 weeks is often enough.
Yep.

I gave 4 weeks, and got convinced to turn it into 16 weeks.

Not a good idea.

So, I guess I should say that when you finally go, steel your resolve to make whatever period be firm. Don't let them talk you into an extension either.
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Old 07-09-2019, 05:23 AM   #16
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i'm in the same spot, my leadership has been great to me, But i am integral part of doing what we do, would we fall down, no, but it would be tough if i said on Nov 2020 bye bye for a DEC 2020 I'M DONE. So my plan is to train someone and feel good about what I've done in my career.
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Old 07-09-2019, 05:52 AM   #17
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From the stories I've heard, your successor woudn't be hired or named until days or maybe a few weeks before you leave anyway, so I'm not seeing any advantage.

On the downside, you'd be less likely to receive any bonuses or raises, as well as the promotions you say you aren't interested in. Why give up any extra money? There'll be no effort to keep you happy since you're going anyway. And what if for some reason circumstances change and you want to or need to stay longer?

The only possible advantage I see is that if there is a layoff coming, you might hint to your manager that you wouldn't mind being tagged. You could get an exit package, and as a feelgood bonus it could save someone else's job. That's if you are ready to go early. Which raises another downside, if you declare yourself a short timer, they may cut you loose before you are ready.

For a clear conscience, work on documenting your job as a guide for your successor.
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Old 07-09-2019, 06:03 AM   #18
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"Two hours should be enough to clean out your desk" was my company's usual retort.

"We don't want any 'dead men walking' around for the next month or three"

I had responsibility for over 1800 people. I'd never let someone hang around for a year; no upside.
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Old 07-09-2019, 06:10 AM   #19
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Can anyone think of a reason I'll regret telling him now?
Do you think your employer would give you one year notice if they were going to terminate you?

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I'm the only one on my team who does what I do, and it will be a hardship for them when I leave.
As valuable as you may be, nobody is irreplaceable.

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I want to let him know that he'll need to plan to train someone else to do what I do so he won't be stuck when I leave.

I can't think of any way this can really hurt me.
Would you be okay with it if he told you to begin training your replacement today and to be done by the end of the month?

You have absolutely nothing to gain and likely will make things more difficult for yourself.

Best to mark the date on your calendar, keep your head down, and simply do your job as usual.
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Old 07-09-2019, 06:22 AM   #20
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We all believe we are irreplaceable, but alas, the show will go on without you ! I would not share my plans with anyone more than a month out. Give your two weeks notice, and see if they attempt to re-negotiate.
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