I’ve had a number of jobs in my career. In many instances, I left on good terms, and I’d go back to the organization if there was a job that suited me. I’d like to think that many of these organizations would rehire me if I applied, as I did good work and had success. I’ve always been pleased when someone is disappointed at my resignation.
Intel had a large layoff in 2015/2016 where over 13,000 employees were dismissed. The CEO at the time implemented a no re-hire policy, meaning those who were laid off, or I’m guessing those that quit during that time, were not eligible for employment in the future.
That policy has been rescinded, quietly, as the company is struggling to find qualified and experienced staff. I think quite a few companies are in the same situation, and they all are competing for good employees. That’s good for us workers, if we have a good reputation, brand, and skills, and likely will lead to higher salaries.
I see both sides here. Certainly the people that an organization decides to let go would likely be the lower performers, those that don’t get along with others, or perhaps those that make too many mistakes. However, I’ve been through layoffs, and I know that those aren’t the only people selected for termination.
Managers dislike some people and will let them go. Sometimes managers like someone and keep them, despite them not being as high a performer as others. Workers with other opportunities, sometimes the best workers, might lobby or volunteer to be laid off and get a severance package, knowing they can easily get another job.
I think most blanket HR policies that don’t allow for flexibility are a poor idea. There might be some hard rules, like we don’t hire people with financial crime convictions to work with money, but there should be few of these. While most times there are valid reasons not to hire someone, we ought to review individual cases and make a decision about that person. I resigned one job in anger because of an individual (who later quit themselves). I would, however, return to the company and work with many of the other people employed there if I found a good position. Actually, the people almost always matter to me, not the job itself. I value who I work with more than what I do.
My view is that technology is still one of the best jobs you can take, doing physically easy work for good compensation solving interesting problems. It can be stressful and a burden at times, but many other careers include those same challenges, often without a better compensation-to-effort ratio.
I am a big believer in finding a great job in your career field that suits you. Doing that takes work, and it takes regular effort to both improve your skills and your brand. Networking matters, whether looking for a new job or avoiding a layoff (or asking to be laid off). Showcasing who you are helps, especially when many other candidates might want the same position you do.
Whether we are in a labor market of high demand or high supply, you want to give yourself the best chance to land that dream job. Work on your skills, your brand, and actively manage your career. With a little luck, you’ll wind up with an amazing job for you, just like I did.
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Great article, Steve. I can relate… I’ve been at my current company for over a decade and have actually turned down higher paying jobs because of the people (from people I work with to the folks in the corner office). In my younger days, I “jumped from fat to fire” (like a frog in a cast iron skillet) twice. It’s not a good feeling and, while money is important, working with good people at a comfortable pace and the “Let’s do it right the first time” attitude is much more important to me.
And I mean I’ve turned down some serious offers right out of the Blue. One company offered me (and it’s not a misprint) a salary that boiled down to the equivalent of $635 PER HOUR. All I had to do was move to Manhattan and be onsite every day.and the job was mine. It took me about 3 seconds to say “Thank you for the awesome offer… but I’ll have to pass”.