2016 saw job turnover rates hit 17.8% - which is the highest it has been since the Great Recession. Machines are automating many jobs, companies are using the independent contractor route to avoid liability and higher compensation. Which means employees are less and less satisfied with what the workplace has to offer. Are you ready for an upgrade? Finally going out on your own, taking a raise at another place, taking time for yourself, or whatever other reasoning you can have for leaving a job - there's a classy way to do it. Sure we'd all love to mimc Dave Chappelle's classic "I quit" sketch, kicking over trash cans, flipping off supervisors and co-workers, and leaving a big fart in the room right before we leave - but burning bridges never helped anyone, and you never know when you may need a reference, or just to not have being an asshole as a stain on your reputation.


Make Sure You're Sure + Have An Exit Strategy

Having one bad day, then telling everybody off and going out in a blaze of glory looks great on TV, but in real life, this probably isn't the best way to go about things. First things first is the make sure that you are absolutely ready to leave an organization that you have invested your time, energy and hours on and vice versa. If you're sure staying isn't a viable option, then it's time to plan your escape. Save up money, find other job options, know what you're going to be doing with your time. This will make your transition period way smoother. Having a plan will also make enduring those last few days that much more pleasant as you'll already know the bright future that lie ahead of you.

Give Notice, Do It Face to Face

Best practice is to deliver a letter of resignation two weeks in advance and deliver it hand to hand. This can be both a terrifying and exhilarating experience. If circumstances do not permit for a face to face, email is your next best option. This is a delicate phase, but as long as you express gratitude for your tenure with the company, and that you are simply moving on, usually everyone remains amicable and very positive. You're not obligated to say much here, and you shouldn't. Avoid gloating about your new endeavor and going on negative rants about the current company. You're moving on, so let's leave on a high note.

How to Handle the Flip Out, The Counteroffer, and the Request to Stay for Longer

At this point, you've mentally moved on, you've laid foundation for your new beginnings and you've given your notice. No matter how professional you are, you never know how your soon to be ex boss will handle this. Sometimes people take it very personally when an employee wants to leave. They may yell or attempt to belittle, stand your ground, remember why you're moving on. Sometimes however you may be hit with a counteroffer - more money, more perks, better treatment. You have to decide for yourself if any of these incentives are reason for you to stay somewhere you've just made up your mind to leave. Sometimes an employer may request that you stay longer to help with your transition. Remember that while you have no obligation to stay any longer than you've given notice for, it can be good practice to see any projects you're working on all the way through. This is a good indicator to your new employer that you are team player who is aware of the bigger picture.

Get a Reference While You're Still Hot

After a great conversation and presenting your well written letter, now is the ideal time to ask for a letter of recommendation and/or a reference. Don't give too much time for this to linger, but capitalize while the feelings are high and in good favor. This will go a long ways down the line and it's a really easy request at the end of your resignation meeting.

Claim What's Yours, Leave What's Theirs

Clear your desk, your computer, your hard drives, etc. Everything that is yours that you have built that you are not under contract to leave with your company, you take. Contacts, resources, info, all of it, you worked to earn it, so don't rush out the door empty handed. Conversely if you agreed that certain things remain property of the company than leave those things - no need for lawsuits and pursuits against you down the line. Also make sure you check for any paid sick days, vacation time, bonuses owed, 401K and retirement savings. Often times there's some extra money and perks waiting for you upon your exit, but if you don't ask, don't expect your former employer to go out of their way at all to get any of it to you.

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Long gone are the days when the majority of Americans dreamed about owning a home with a white picket fence.

The traditional American Dream may be on its deathbed, but that doesn't mean a core component of the vision can't survive. It simply takes a diverse perspective. People can still believe they can attain their own vision of success in society with hard work, knowledge, and risk-taking. Investing in today's American Dream may literally mean investing money in our modern economy, starting with our infrastructure.

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Stick To a Specific Strategy or Niche

Real estate is a challenging sphere of the business world, one that requires several key skills: groundwork knowledge, networking, perseverance, and organization. True knowledge of the real estate market will come with time and experience, but it's a smart idea to select one area of the market and stick to it. This is the best way to attain in-depth familiarity with your specific niche.

First, choose a geographical area close by and then a niche strategy within it, such as house flips, rental rehabs, or residential or commercial properties. By doing so, you can become aware of current inner working conditions in the market and you'll have a better idea of how these trends may change in the future.

Be Vigilant About Viable Financing Options

While it takes money to make money, you don't have to use all your own money. A common misconception about real estate investing is that you must be wealthy to start off. This isn't straight fact, however. A majority of people can test the waters of real estate investing without a lot of initial cash in their pocket.

Aside from traditional financing options from banks and institutions, private lending options can be worthy solutions. Hard money lenders are popular, reasonable choices, and they tend to have fewer qualification requirements upfront. However, be sure to strategically choose a hard money lender to find the best possible fit.

Master the Art of Finding Good Deals

There may be hundreds of thousands of available properties for sale on the current market, but the bulk of them will never amount to the final money-making result you desire. Another great tip for new real estate investors is to use good math to estimate profit. Taking risks is part of the process, but you have the ability to analyze properties and use networking sources to find the greatest deal. You can't win every deal, but you can steadily work towards a thriving financial future.