Tony Hall, Director-General of the BBC, announced on Monday that he is to step down from his post this summer.
In an email sent to the staff as seen by the Guardian, Hall said that his move is motivated by the necessity to appoint a new BBC boss before the mid-term review of the broadcaster's charter in 2022.
According to Hall, it was a tough decision for him and he would never resign if he followed his heart.
"Thanks to you and your great work I believe I'll be leaving the BBC in a much stronger place than when I joined", he wrote in the email.
According to the chairman of the BBC board David Clementi, the corporation will start looking for a new director-general both within the company and externally.
Tony Hall, 68, occupied his post for almost seven years. He is currently serving as the President of the European Broadcasting Union. He is also a life peer holding the title of Baron Hall of Birkenhead.