4 questions to ask if your boss quits suddenly
People leave their jobs all the time. What’s less common is the sudden departure of someone senior and powerful. So, when that happens without warning, work can get pretty stressful. You’re not sure who to report to, your schedule is a mess, your colleagues are panicking and work just seems to be piling up!
Amidst all the chaos, take a moment to close your eyes, draw a deep breath, and try to determine how this new development affects you.
- Why did he quit?
It’s natural to wonder about this, especially if it’s a high-level departure that happens suddenly.
There might be a fair amount of gossip around the office about why your boss resigned from his post. Don’t get sucked into it -- steer clear of speculation, as it will only cloud your judgement or make you paranoid about your future at the company. If you have a good relation with your boss, pick a good time to ask him the question yourself, or direct your query to the people in HR.
- What are my options?
Take some time to sit back and reflect on how you want to react and conduct yourself in light of this sudden development. If you feel your boss quitting is a sign of trouble within the company, evaluate whether it’s time for you to leave your job, too. However, if your company’s situation still seems pretty solid, maybe it’s time to think more about where you stand.
- How does the company plan to find a replacement?
If your plan of action is to stick it out at the company, get in touch with someone from HR and find out what their plan of action is. Do they plan to hire someone from outside, or are they looking to fill the position internally? What’s the timeframe for them to find a replacement? It’s important to get these answers before asking yourself the next question.
- Am I ready for more responsibility?
Assuming HR doesn’t already have someone in mind for the role, it’s time to ask yourself the question you’ve been avoiding. Is this a responsibility you would be willing to take on? This can be a tricky ask, so take some time to mull over this. Envision your long-term goal - where do you see yourself 5 years from now?
If you feel like you’re the right man or woman for the job your next step is to convince the powers that be. Present yourself as a reliable person who understands the dynamics of the job well. If they see that you have what it takes, you might just get the job! However, if you don’t think you’re quite cut out for this, take a step back and support whoever steps in to fill the role. After all, the end goal is to keep the team efficient.