Terry Brown paid tribute to the volunteers and back room staff at AFC Wimbledon in the aftermath of his departure from Kingsmeadow.
Having spent five years with the Dons, Brown and assistant manager Stuart Cash had build up a very close relationship with all those who have worked, and those who still do, behind the scenes.
And Brown entreated the board to maintain the family culture that has served the club so well so far.
The 60-year-old, who admitted he was very emotional and cried after the defeat to Torquay United, said: "They have some beautiful people at Wimbledon.
"They have something like 250 volunteers at Wimbledon. These people do all sorts of jobs for nothing, they never ask for anything. All they want is a 'Hello, Terry'.
"They need to make sure they keep that culture because it is very difficult when you go into the Football League and you start paying people, there is suddenly a different mentality around the ground."