I don’t want them to call my former colleague!

T.A.P. Q#289 – I Don’t Want Them to Call My Former Colleague!

September 14, 2009 by sparktalk

Dear Experts,

I interviewed for a job and the conversation turned to the company I worked for a few years back. We started the ‘name game’ and the next thing you know, the hiring manager tell me he knows a woman at my old employer that I CAN’T STAND. We didn’t get along and even had a blow out one time. She’s still at that company. I didn’t say that she and I didn’t have a good relationship, I just smiled and said I knew her. The hiring manager then told me she was a good friend of his family and that he would call her for a reference. What should I do? She’s going to trash me to the hiring manager and I really want that job. Suggestions?

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Q #289 Answer:  Dig deep. If possible call the ex-coworker to indicate that you spoke with the prospective employer, who highlighted their relationship.  Note that you had your differences, but always respected him/her for her [insert here: honesty, directness, hard work, diligence – whatever descriptor that would be apt AND make it hard not to reference your good work skills].

Trying to avoid blow-ups and interpersonal issues is best if possible, but if not, make your peace when leaving a company. Alternatively, try not to link yourself to anyone who might not help you.  Of course, any employer would call someone who worked for a company you also worked for to find out what they can, whether they tell you or not…


About Mary Sherwood Sevinsky

Masters-prepared Certified Disability Management Specialist. Over eighteen years experience in vocational assessment, counseling, and testimony, primarily in rehabilitation services.
This entry was posted in career change, interview, Networking, Vocational Counseling and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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