Fog Creek Software
Discussion Board




early retirement question

I am a contract programmer with two clients. Both are happy with me,and I think want me to continue working forever. For various reasons, I am planning on leaving programming as a profession and am trying to do so before I turn 30, which occurs in two years. My plan is to continue working until next July, in order to save up a bunch of money before I exit.

My question is: when do I tell the clients I am going to quit?  6 months ahead of time? or 6 days ahead of time? I have a good rapport with them, so I don't want them to freak out. However, I don't want them to drop me any earlier than I want to leave. :) Any suggestions?

...
Thursday, June 26, 2003

1 month is plenty of time unless you are their entire programming staff ;-)

GiorgioG
Thursday, June 26, 2003

I am the entire programming staff. At least for the projects I am working on for them.

...
Thursday, June 26, 2003

If you really are their only staff, it wouldn't hurt to give them more than the usual 30 days notice.

I had a somewhat similar situation, when I left a job where I was very happy, and where my employer was very happy with my work. I needed to move to another city for personal reasons, so I told my boss - "you need to start training a replacement for me - I'm moving in three months".

Over the next 6 months (I ended up being delayed for other reasons), I got to train a replacement, and clean up all those annoying little bugs that I hadn't gotten to yet. When I left, the code was rock-solid, and my replacement was able to take over with no problems.

On the other hand, if your relationship with the people you're contracting for is anything but stellar, be careful.

-Mark

Mark Bessey
Thursday, June 26, 2003

Since you are contracting for them.  You could find a replacement for yourself.

Tell them, I am leaving in x months, but don't worry here is eclectic_echidna, he is great and will be able to meet your needs as I have.

--
ee

eclectic_echidna
Thursday, June 26, 2003

The problem with giving 30 day notice is that once said notice has been given you develop short timer's syndrom.  A few years ago I was in a similar position.  I figured it would take me 30 days to finish what I was doing, and had other plans.  So I turned in my notice.  But then I had a hell of a time continuing on the project.  In my mind I'd already moved on, and what I was doing suddenly wasn't important to me.

snotnose
Thursday, June 26, 2003

How are you managing to retire by age 30?

By my calculations, you can afford to withdraw 3%-4% of your principal per year, and still be protected against inflation.  Do you have savings equal to 25x-30x your annual living expenses?

Anonymous
Thursday, June 26, 2003

I'm retiring from programming. I'm moving into a different line of work.

...
Thursday, June 26, 2003

OK, now you've piqued my curiosity:

What are you moving onto?
Why?

Entrepreneur
Friday, June 27, 2003

I'm going on a round the world trip for a year , to visit family and see the world. Then I'm going to take a non technical position at a management consulting firm run by a family member.

...
Friday, June 27, 2003

Why? I'm just not into computer programming like I was when I was 20. I will still do some hacking now and then, as I like certain aspects of programming, but I like it more when I don't have to do it for money.

...
Friday, June 27, 2003

"...but I like it more when I don't have to do it for money. "

Amen.

After spending several years working hard to improve my software development skills, I find it extremely frustrating to be told that I won't be interviewed for a open position that I am interested in because I don't have extensive experience with software product Y or programming language Z.


Friday, June 27, 2003

*  Recent Topics

*  Fog Creek Home