How Do I Get a New Job When My Manager is Giving Bad Reference? |

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EP 1349 A job hunter who is learning  that references matter asks what s/he can do When his manager is getting a bad reference.

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The question for today is, "How do I get a new job. When my manager is giving up that references about me?"

Before I answer the question, I want you to learn a lesson- -Don't put yourself in that position. You discovered how difficult it is to find work when the best person to evaluate you is not in your corner.  They are not your ally.

Whether the issue is around bad behavior in the office, whether the issue is around poor performance or excessive lateness is, this all comes back to bite you in the butt.  This person is not an ally or willing to lie for you, they are not going to stick to a story.  You are going to need to find someone else to do it for you.  Maybe a former coworker will (the key word in that is former); maybe a former manager -- someone who predates your current manager who can attest to your work.

Let's assume that you were fired for poor performance.  Why would your firm give out a good reference?  After all, they fired you because you did a bad job. Understand that firms will comply with one another about confirming dates of employment.  They're not going to lie about things related to your work with them.

You can go to HR (and I think this would be the smart move) and ask whether the firm has a policy against providing references because, frankly, "Mine will be poor and I don't want to be in a position where I have to sue because the impact of the reference your firm provides is going to keep me from finding work. I don't believe I should be punished for the rest of my life for mistakes I made. I'm sure you don't want to deal with litigation. What I would like to have everyone cautioned about is that it is not company policy to give references out we can confirm dates of employment."  That can get you off the hook.

You still need to get people who will talk about you and say that they are a former colleague, former manager… Stuff along those lines… And talk positively about you.


Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter is a career and leadership coach who worked as a recruiter for more than 40 years. He is the host of “No

Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter
Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter

BS Job Search Advice Radio,” the #1 podcast in iTunes for job search with more than 1300 episodes and his newest show, “No BS Coaching Advice.” He is a member of The Forbes Coaches Council.

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