5 Things Not to Say in Your Exit Interview

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Question: My petty tyrant of a boss has finally downsized me. I should be crushed, but I’m so elated that I feel like dancing on his desk. Now I can tell him the truth about how I feel, right?

Ahaha, very funny. Try to work out your angst with cartoons or laughing amongst your friends. Even there, though, be careful – emails have a way of going to the wrong recipient.

Having said that, here’s the original list.

  1. Were you born an asshole, or did you work at it?
  2. No one wants your company secrets, except as a bad example.
  3. It’s good that you don’t care why I’m leaving, because anyone with half a brain could figure it out.
  4. You’ll be paying consultants five times as much to tell you the exact same things as I’ve been saying for the past three years.
  5. Don’t waste time waiting around with your mouth open, hoping that a roast pheasant will fly into it. For one thing, roast pheasants almost never fly sideways. They only fly downwards.

Here’s what really got said.

Boss: So you’re leaving. Well, I don’t care why you’re leaving… (pause)… although I’m sure you have good reasons. Where are you going?

Me: Here and there… working part time at other places.

Boss: Are you working for the competition? I’ll have to shoot you now so you don’t reveal any company secrets.

Me: Boss-man, people are a lot less interested in your company secrets than you think.

Boss: (?)

Me: Look, you’ve turned down projects because they weren’t your thing, right? Well, not every office wants to do the type of projects that you do. *

* These would be the types of projects built on fantasy, for clients who never pay. But I didn’t say this part.

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