When it comes to reputation and image, the average person will think of an organization, institution or corporation. Sadly, too few of us pause to think about individual reputation and how priceless and precious it is.
What brings personal reputation to mind is two recent examples of individuals who left one organization to join another. Both handled their resignations in a totally professional way and were wished well by peers and managment alike. Yet, no sooner had the individuals departed than management determined the two had, in fact, "checked out" months before. Work hadn’t been done. Needs hadn’t been attended to. In short, they had just stopped trying, figuring that focusing on the next job was all that mattered.
Bad move. Because when it comes to personal reputation, one must always give 100 percent 100 percent of the time. "Checking out" early can and will damage one’s reputation. Why? Because eventually these two will move on again and when the next prospective employer is asking for references, that "checking out" manuever will weigh heavily in any comments.
When it comes to one’s reputation, you can check out. But you can never leave.