In 2004, I was given an ultimatum by my manager that I had thirty days to “shape up or ship out.” There were no other options besides those. Since I had already decided that I no longer wanted to work for that manager, I handed in my resignation and had thirty days’ of paid vacation, during which I looked for a new job.
I had wanted to quit several months before. He had been looking for any reason to find fault with my work for months by then, and a badly-worded and condescending email had me ranting so badly that Mary said, “look, just quit. It won’t get any better.” I wrote my resignation, drove to the office, and dropped it, my building pass, American Express card, and laptop on his desk. He got me to sit down, apologized for the email, and talked me out of leaving.
In retrospect, I should have just walked out and never looked back.