Eending a relationship is hard, no matter it is with your romantic partner or telling your department chair that you hope to find a new job. unfortunately, i am about to face the latter. I wonder if you all have any suggestions that I can inform my chair that i have such an intention that is less hurtful?
Date: 04 Dec 2013 22:54
Number of posts: 6
RSS: New posts
These things happen all the time and there is no reason to sound apologetic. First of all, why are you even telling them at this point? Do you need a letter from your chair to apply elsewhere?
No one is obligated to get into specific reasons as to why you plan to leave. I'd keep my response vague if anyone asked, e.g. I'm leaving because of "lifestyle change…family matters…location…etc." It's not their business to know EXACTLY why you're taking off…especially if you don't officially have another job lined up yet.
This is life. People come and go….
Do you have a job offer in hand or are you simply on the market? If the latter, I wouldn't go telling people until you're sure and have an offer or are ready to accept one.
Also, at the end of the day, I think we ALL tend to overestimate our value to others. Unless you're a giant fish in a small pond, they honestly might not miss you. Given the current job market, if you're senior, they can likely hire someone fresh off a post-doc with more pubs and funding than you who requires a smaller salary. If you're junior, they'll feel you wasted their startup funds, and their main interest in keeping you will simply be so that they don't have to give your replacement another startup package.
I realize that's a fairly pessimistic attitude, but I've seen this situation from both sides. And, in most cases, the response is "don't let the door hit you where the good lord split you." It's like the scene in Moneyball (not a spoiler here) where Brad Pitt's character explains to Jonah Hill's character that baseball players don't care as much as you'd think when they get traded, because they expect it. Chairs and Deans expect that faculty, especially desirable ones, will go on the market and likely get other offers.
I agree entirely with both previous posters. Definitely nothing to be so worried about. People move around in academics. That is a fact of life. I left an institution at which I was extremely happy overall. There were just a few things I really wanted to do in my career that could not do there. So, once I had the offer from another school (certainly not before), I went to the chair and told him about it. He was not surprised (faculty have this conversation with chairs quite a bit) and then my old school ponied up all they could but I ended up leaving anyway (for the above mentioned reasons: There were some things they simply couldn't change about the place). When I told him I was leaving we both got emotional. After all, I loved that place and the department but oh well. In the end, that chair even visited me at my new position (which I also love very much!). There are no lingering hard feelings or anything like that.