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No Matter What, Don’t Burn Any Bridges

Unfortunately a day doesn’t go by where I don’t hear from a contact who is in transition. Because the company went through downsizing, rightsizing or whatever term we are using these days, they are out of a job. Yes those words are very painful to hear, very painful to accept and very scary, given where the economy is these days.

Every week my opinion is solicited from a number of people in transition. Some of my responses are customized and some are standard. The standard comments are: don’t look for a job when you are angry, and you have a right to be upset but you need to get that out of your system prior to looking for your next job. The other thing you need to do is don’t burn any bridges. Hopefully when you left the company you didn’t say anything you will regret later. Clearly going through this for most people is very hard and emotional but it won’t do you any good to trash your old boss or company. Remember this is a very, very small world and things have a way of getting back to people.

I have interviewed a number of people who are so upset and haven’t gotten through the healing process and unfortunately I didn’t really consider them for the position because emotionally they weren’t ready for a new job. I have also heard a number of stories where friends have interviewed people who talked about why they left their prior job and gave lots of negative comments about their boss. Unfortunately, the person conducting the interview knew the boss, which left a bad impression of the applicant, giving them no chance of securing the position.

If you are forced to leave a company, go out with dignity and class. No need to do things you will regret in a few weeks.

  • Have you seen this happen when you interview potential candidates?
  • What advice do you have for people who are in transition?

I look forward to your comments.

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