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4 Questions to Ask When Your Boss Quits Suddenly

Sometimes, people quit their jobs regularly. However, it’s uncommon for someone important and in a higher position to leave suddenly without notice. When this happens, it can make work very stressful.

You might not know who to report to, your schedule becomes disorganized, your coworkers start to worry, and the workload keeps increasing! Amid all this chaos, take a moment to relax. Close your eyes, take a deep breath, and try to understand how this unexpected change affects you.

1. Why did he quit?

It’s natural to wonder about this, especially if it’s a high-level departure that happens suddenly. 

There might be a fair amount of gossip around the office about why your boss resigned from his post. Don’t get sucked into it — steer clear of speculation, as it will only cloud your judgement or make you paranoid about your future at the company. If you have a good relationship with your boss, pick a good time to ask him the question yourself or direct your query to the people in HR.

2. What are my options?

Take some time to sit back and reflect on how you want to react and conduct yourself in light of this sudden development. If you feel your boss quitting is a sign of trouble within the company, evaluate whether it’s time for you to leave your job, too. However, if your company’s situation still seems pretty solid, maybe it’s time to think more about where you stand.

3. How does the company plan to find a replacement?

If your plan of action is to stay at the company, contact someone from HR and find out what their plan of action is. Do they plan to hire someone from outside, or are they looking to fill the position internally? What’s the timeframe for them to find a replacement? It’s important to get these answers before asking yourself the next question.

4. Am I ready for more responsibility?

Assuming HR doesn’t already have someone in mind for the role, it’s time to ask yourself the question you’ve been avoiding. Is this a responsibility you would be willing to take on? This can be tricky, so take some time to mull over this. Envision your long-term goal – where do you see yourself 5 years from now?

If you feel like you’re the right man or woman for the job your next step is to convince the powers that be. Present yourself as a reliable person who understands the dynamics of the job well. If they see you have what it takes, you might just get the job! However, if you don’t think you’re quite cut out for this, step back and support whoever steps in to fill the role. After all, the end goal is to keep the team efficient.

Things to Do When Your Boss Quits

To assist you in this endeavour, we’ve developed a list of eight things you should (and should not) do when your boss quits.

1. Stay Calm

When your supervisor announces their resignation from the organisation, you may experience various emotions and circumstances. 

A quick resignation does not imply that the organisation is underperforming, and you should begin your job search. Stay calm, figure out what occurs next, and ask how you can help.

2. Maintain the Status Quo

Even while things are changing, your job’s quality should be maintained. Work hard to create an excellent first impression when your new boss starts. During the transition, everything should be “business as usual”. Maintaining the status quo helps you stay focused on you and your job, not your absent boss. Your new employer will appreciate that the department is running smoothly.

3. Be Professional

Whether you liked or disliked your boss, it’s best to keep quiet as word spreads about their departure. Although it can be material for gossip, avoid workplace turmoil and focus on your work.

Management may eventually discover that you’ve been guessing why your boss resigned, which could risk your employment or send an incorrect message. Being gracious about your boss’s departure is a far more effective way to maintain professionalism.

4. Learn About Next Steps

While you may be tempted to whip out your CV and start job-seeking immediately, your priority should be figuring out what follows. This could range from how your employment will be affected to any prospective team rearrangement.

Your supervisor should explain what to expect throughout the transition, but this is sometimes true. Sometimes, your manager is still determining what will happen next. For example, there could be some team restructuring.

5. Be Flexible

It is better to be adaptable during transitional periods. Whether you work in the office or remotely, you may need extra hours to ensure everything goes well. Your coworkers may be struggling with projects, so assist them whenever possible. Also, contribute by pitching in and covering a portion of your boss’s previous workload. Whether scheduling meetings or speaking with clients, do everything you can to ease the load while remaining mindful of others’ needs.

6. Help Out

As your previous boss prepares to depart, you may be assigned to an interim manager already employed by the organisation. If that’s the case, take the time to engage with them. Tell them exactly what your responsibilities are, what projects you’re working on, and what tasks you’d be willing to accomplish until things calm down.

What to Do Before Your Boss Leaves

Have you heard of those emergency kits that say, “Break In Case Of Emergency”? Well, if your current boss is stable and things seem fine, it wouldn’t hurt to be prepared—just like it’s smart to buy an umbrella when the sun is shining.

If your boss has already quit, this section may not help much. But if you feel that big changes are coming to your company, it’s important to prepare now.

First, make sure your resume and LinkedIn profile are in good shape. If you’re thinking about changing careers, you might need to update your LinkedIn bio. Adding any recent work accomplishments to your resume is also a good idea. Keep these tools handy, just in case.

Next, explore what job opportunities are available. However, be aware of any restrictions mentioned in your contract, like a non-compete clause. Also, avoid looking for jobs or sending out resumes during work hours. But other than that, it’s okay to look for better job options even if you’re currently employed.

Communication is key during times of change. It’s one of the reasons why transitions can be so stressful. A survey showed that most people find a lack of communication adds unnecessary stress. And it makes sense, right? When there’s not enough communication, things become unclear. During times of transition, this lack of clarity can be quite jarring. So, talk to people, including your boss, to find out what’s happening and where everyone stands.

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