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It's career reflection week here at the Capitalist, because I did something on Friday I had no idea I would do at the start of 2009.  I quit my job as VP of HR at SourceMedical to take another gig.  I know, nice move during a recession...

Anyway, the move is the right one for me, and I'll be talking about it some this week.  Before I get toElvis has left the building where I'm going, let's talk about how I said goodbye.  That's right, the topic today is the note you love to hate, the email note from the person leaving your company.  If you're like me, when you see the subject "goodbye" in an email, you open it to figure out one thing - whether the person said absolutely nothing but thanks to the whole universe, or was so bold to take pot shots at the organization as they step out the door.

The nice thing about blogging is that it's given me thick skin like a middle-aged rhino.  That's bad from a complexion standpoint, but good in the fact that I'm willing to share personal items like my goodbye note from last Friday to the rest of SourceMedical, and let you, the reader, chop it up and tell me what I missed.

So here it it is, the product of 10 minutes of writing and planning.  Focus points - acknowledgment that the reader was opening to see 1) what was going on with me that I would write "goodbye" in the title, and 2) naming names of the people who had really helped me during my time at source.  The note didn't go out to everyone, because that's not my style, but it probably did go out to the 25% of the company I had worked with in a close capacity. 

Hit me in the comments with what I missed or what you liked:

From: Kris Dunn
Sent: Friday, March 06, 2009 10:09 AM
To: Kris Dunn
Subject: The Big Goodbye!
That’s right… It’s time for the goodbye that everyone cringes at, wondering if the author will simply say thanks, or be like Stalin and take the “scorched earth” approach…
Stalin I’m not… and SourceMedical hasn’t provided the opportunity to be disgruntled on any level, especially for me…
By now, most of you have heard that I’m leaving SourceMedical, and today’s my last day.  Wanted to drop you a note to say thanks for everything you’ve done for me.  Source is an ultra-cool place to work and candidly, I wasn’t looking.  Didn’t even have a resume, that’s how content I was.  Still, sometimes opportunity presents itself to get out of your comfort zone and grow.  That’s what I’m doing with the move.  I’ll end the “tears in his eyes” segment of the note by saying I’m going to miss everyone I’m sending this to, and I’ll miss all the great things that Source has provided me on a daily basis.  The good news is that I consider everyone I’m sending this to part of my network, and I’m taking you with me in that regard (PS – wasn’t about to use the old “sourcemedical – all” list, so forgive if I’ve missed anyone)…
Special thanks go out to the following players:
Scott Stone – my boss – always supportive and like a great manager, gave me the room to let my freak flag fly, as long as it was good for the business.  Thanks Scott, you rock.

My Direct Reports – Kyle, Lane, Michael and both Jessicas.  A great group who made me look good even when I didn’t deserve it.  Thanks guys, I learned from you every day.

Everyone else on this email – Whether you know it or not, you helped me grow a lot over the last four years.  Plus, you’re good people who are fun to be around.  Thanks for having great instincts on the people side and making my job easy.  Let’s grab coffee sometime, because god knows I can’t live without caffeine.  
That’s it!  I’m out, and let’s stay in touch.  SourceMedical rules!
Here’s where you can find me, please update your address books accordingly:
Kris Dunn
Personal email – [email protected] 
Cell Phone – 205.383.9600
Twitter - @kris_dunn
Blog #1 – www.hrcapitalist.com
Blog #2 – www.fistfuloftalent.com
Thanks - KD

What do you think?  Good or bad, hit me in the comments and maybe someone can learn from your edits when they ultimately find this post in a random google search - as they're prepping to write their own goodbye note.

PS - I almost plugged in an old-school rock video like this one from Bon Jovi, but decided it was too over the top.  Probably a missed opportunity.


Meg Bear

Class act KD. Sorry to see the video didn't make the cut ;-). btw thanks for the updated email, I was looking for that.


Very well written Kris. Liked the personal flair and shout outs. I can not think of any justification for someone to take shots at their employer (especially in writing).

HR Minion

Congrats on the new gig!! I hope it's as awesome as the last one. I liked the goodbye email. I think it's important to leave a good impression. :)


"Jessicas" not "Jessica's"


I would say you did well. It seems like there is an unwritten template for these. Start with saying buy, add the acceptable reasons for leaving, then list what you are thankful for, and end with the current contact info. Is this why you thought about making this a multi-blog... trying to free up time for the new gig?

Tim Sackett

Waa! Waa! I got a new job making 6 figures and I can do all kinds of cool social media stuff - and now I have to leave all of you with a new HR Guy who won't be as cool. Waa!

Seriously, good note, I like the specifics, way to manage up on your way out.

Michael D. Haberman, SPHR

Nicely done. It is the "you" that we have gotten to know and I am sure what you were at work. It fits.

Kelly Boatright

Very well done. I say send it. Congrats on the new opp!

Crystal Peterson

The perfect "Goodbye" e-mail. Leaving on a high note and not burning any bridges - perfect.
Congrats on the new gig.


Good Manners never go out of style.

In the famous words of Kris Dunn "Stay classy"

Best of Luck with your new gig

Amy Wilson

Actually, I open the email to see where someone's going, to get an understanding of the job market, opportunities and particularly the person's state of mind (what sorts of conversations can I have with them as we continue to network, how can I continue to learn from them).

So ... I am, of course, dying to know where you're going and what sorts of amazing things you'll be doing.

Best wishes!

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