I’ve broken my own three rules about leaving a company

Lucy Kellaway: I knew it was time to go once I realised I was no longer frightened

“When I cleared out my desk last week, I felt fine. I simply scooped up 32 years of workplace detritus and dumped it in the bin.” Photograph: Getty

“When I cleared out my desk last week, I felt fine. I simply scooped up 32 years of workplace detritus and dumped it in the bin.” Photograph: Getty

What is the most decorous way to leave a company where you have worked happily for decades?

I had always thought there were three things well-behaved people never did. They did not poach colleagues. They did not hang around afterwards, but made a clean break. And they did not get embarrassingly emotional.

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