Your Company Needs a Process for Offboarding Employees Gracefully.

When I left my job at O.C. Tanner to help create a tech startup in Portland, Oregon, 19 years ago, I had no intention of returning. I had loved the job but was moving on to other opportunities. At a farewell lunch with my team at a local restaurant, we were all surprised and admittedly a little tense when the CEO walked in and asked to say a few words. He explained that he wanted to personally thank me for the work I’d done and told me I had an open invitation to come back to the company if things didn’t work out. Then he reached into his jacket pocket, handed me a one-way airline ticket from Portland back to Salt Lake City, and said “I mean it.”

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