Resigning in style, with YouTube

Go out with a bang rather than a whimper, with help from Jerry Maguire, American Beauty and Fight Club.

Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

Michael Martin became the highest-profile casualty of Expenses-gate this week, when he was forced to quit as Speaker, and his 33-second resignation speech actually seems to have gone down relatively well. 'Very dignified', the FT said, adding a Macbeth-mangling: 'Nothing he did as Speaker became him like the leaving of it'. So if your time comes, how can you make the best of a bad situation?

Stay true to your principles. Sports agent Jerry Maguire has been fired for questioning his company's methods, and abandoned by most of his clients. But instead of slinking off quietly, Jerry decides to appeal to his entire office to come and join his new venture. Sadly, most of his colleagues are not as high-minded as he hoped - but he still ends up with a new employee. And a goldfish.

Leverage your existing knowledge. In these cost-cutting times, everyone's having to justify their corporate existence. So Lester Burnham's decision (in American Beauty) to start his job description with: "My job consists of basically masking my contempt for the a**holes in charge..." isn't terribly politic. However, he manages to turn the situation to his advantage by reminding his manager of something he's not supposed to know about the boss's extra-curricular activities...

Push the right buttons. In Fight Club, Edward Norton's unnamed protagonist is another wage slave whose lack of commitment to the cause has been noted by his superiors; here, he goes to see his boss in the full knowledge that he's about to get the boot. But rather than accepting his punishment meekly, the newly-emboldened Norton finds a novel way to persuade his boss to let him leave - on full pay.

In today's bulletin:

Fasten your seatbelts - BA nosedives to record loss
Non-Standard and Poor outlook for UK economy
Editor's blog: Why this new Puritanism is pointless
Why green shoots lead to recovery
Resigning in style, with YouTube

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