A reader writes:
I am working in retail fine jewelry at present, and have secured another job. I know that my current manager will tell me to leave the day I resign, most likely call someone in to cover my shift. How do I resign gracefully, appearing to be giving two weeks' notice when in fact, it will only be a few days' notice? I cannot afford to lose two weeks' pay.
If you are confident that you're going to be asked to leave the day you give notice (because you've seen your manager do that to others in similar situations), then you should simply wait to give your notice until you're ready for it to be your last day.
This is the price managers pay when they handle resignations like that. Smart managers create an atmosphere where this doesn't happen to them -- because they treat resigning employees well.
There are some employers who do have a legitimate business need to have resigning employees leave immediately (for instance, those worried about trade secrets), but most don't. Smart employers will make it known that employees are welcome to work out their notice periods, since that ensures that employees will continue to give them that notice.
Employees can figure out what type of employer they're working for by paying attention to how your boss has handled other employees who resign. Are people shown the door immediately? Pushed out earlier than they would have otherwise planned to leave? If so, assume the same may happen to you. But if your employer has a track record of behaving well in these situations, return the favor and give a reasonable notice period.
(Note: This is NOT license to skip giving notice in any situation other than one where your boss has a sustained track record of having people leave immediately. If 9 times out of 10, she has welcomed the notice period and just once told someone to leave that day, there were reasons for it that were specific to that one person. In that case, you still need to give notice -- at least if you want to leave without burning bridges.)