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Sunday, May 16, 2010

Think before you leap

A colleague of mine recently resigned to accept another job which he hoped would give him new things to learn, sharpening of skills in formulating strategies and exposure in marketing management of 2 countries.

Our industry circle is very small, and my boss and I had heard some unfavourable things about the people managing that company. So we gave our colleague ample warnings without sounding too much like we were saying bad things just because we wanted him to stay back. In fact, I said only enough to convey the most relevant information, and encouraged him to get feedback from other people, including our clients who certainly had dealings with that company as well. However, blind in his enthusiasm for a new start, better pay, and promises by that company's HR department, he refused to do his research homework. The only people he clarified with were the HR execs of that new company.

So we sent him off with a farewell dinner and well wishes, and my boss looked for another person to fill his position.

2 weeks after he started work there, he called me and asked to come back! I thought he was joking and said, "Haha! Very funny!" and began to advise him that it was only teething pains and things would work out well after he got used to the new environment and systems there. But he was serious about coming back. So I told him to talk to the boss.

Unfortunately, my boss had already offered his job to the new replacement. He was too late.

I asked him why he wanted to come back, and he said that he was misled about the situation in that company. Instead of being able to formulate strategies, these came "top down" from the USA, which he was not allowed to change to suit local situations. Instead of providing marketing support with very much of a free reign, he had to consult the regional marketing manager who is in charged of Asia Pacific, but because she is based in Malaysia, that manager has 10 fingers in the Malaysian pie. In a nutshell, his expectations for career development there were not met.

Moral of the story: Do your homework before you go. The hiring HR execs could either intentionally hide certain facts, or they are simply "blurr" as well.

1 comment:

  1. Unfortunately for many like your ex colleague, pain is the only way they'll learn to do the right thing. Actually we're all like that, except that some need more pain than others to learn. The good news is that we will all learn - eventually.