Can You Go There Again?

Here’s an interesting question: should I return to a past employer? Well, that depends. There are some concerns that you need to address and let’s put a different spin on this: think of it as going back to an old boyfriend. Honestly, your job is like a marriage or serious relationship. The resume and interviewing is dating but getting the job is getting hitched.

So let’s take a stroll back memory lane – why did you leave? Let’s face it, if it was so great why leave in the first place? Were you feeling neglected, under-appreciated or without the opportunity to grow? Where they smothering you? Think back to the reasons that you wanted out and remember them because I doubt things have changed. Oh, they may say they have, but really, I highly doubt it. So if you couldn’t live with it before why do you think you can now?

Or did you get tempted by the “grass looks greener” virus? I could say shame on you, but surprisingly I am not going to because it may have been really good for you. Cutting someone else’s lawn makes you appreciate the lawn you left. Maybe you needed the little reality check to realize it really was home. Now, for the ex-boyfriend, if he did more than cut the neighbor’s grass than I say no, you can’t go back you dumb bunny. But if it was a matter of stupidity and something you can forgive – oh, and more importantly live through telling your girlfriends that you guys are dating again, then go ahead. But, luckily for you, jobs can’t cheat on you so no hurt feelings or need for tests. But that is going a bit too far off the path here.

Did you just need a break? What I find sad is so many people are unwilling to take time off work. For some unknown reason they think the world will stop revolving if they take a day off for crying out loud. It won’t so get out and live a little will ya? When I was a manager, I had an amazing staff who each shared a bit of knowledge about what I did so when I took a vacation my duties were covered without taxing one person and enough that my rule was simple: do not call me. Not even if the building is on fire – I’m not a fireman and I’m on vacation – I earned it.

I digress, so here you were never taking time off to recharge and you got burned out. Instead of taking that needed time you looked for another job. Well, that’s stupid, but that’s beside the point. The point is we all need to recharge. So if you did the stupid move, go back and this time plan a vacation or two not only for your sake, but for your co-workers as well.

Oh, and one last thought to think about in going back to an old employer: trust. If you left, how are you going to earn their trust that you won’t wander again? Face it, you burned them and you have some making up to do. They have every right to tell you that you broke up with them so you have some making up to do. You can’t just waltz back in there like nothing happened and start where you left off. You need to rebuild that relationship and the burden is on you. If it is worth it then swallow that pride and the stupid notion that they should believe you just because you said so. Work for it, you owe it to them. If they let you go, well then, my friend, you’re the one getting made up to.

It is a deeply personal decision whether to go back or not and there are many factors to consider. How wrong is too wrong for you? For me, if a guy cheats – I’m done, he’s dead (metaphorically speaking). I only like four legged dogs thank you very much. If it is a timing thing or he had to deal with some life issues, okay, we can talk about that. I mean I know the world does not revolve around me. So think about the relationship that you had before, what you want out of a relationship now and if you both can work together to make that happen.

If nothing has changed why on earth do you think it will be better this time? The definition of insanity what, doing the same thing over and over and expecting the same results? Think about it…

Lisa K. McDonald, CPRW
Career Polish, Inc.

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