Recently, we’ve looked at the questions you should ask yourself and questions for your potential employer. Let’s say that you’ve finally made the decision to make the move; and sooner rather than later, you realized, “I made a mistake!” Maybe the firm that you thought hired you is not the type of firm you wound up going to. The firm represented in the interview turned out to be something different in reality. You’ve made the wrong move. Has this ever happened to you? The truth is that this happens more than people want to admit. However, it tends to happen less when you are working with a recruiter who knows the firm inside and out.
You Can’t Really Expect The Unexpected
Let us examine how this happens. You met the hiring manager, interviewed the desk, you talk to the salespeople, and everything checks out. You dotted all your “I’s” and you crossed all your “T’s”. Why didn’t this work out? How have you made the wrong move? I cannot answer that specifically. However, I can say that when you go through the interview process, you are not necessarily meeting everybody that you are going to be interacting with. There can be personality conflicts that you never expected. There could be conflicts in bringing over your business – again totally unexpected. There could be a management change since you were hired. There could be a myriad of other unexpected and/or unforeseen factors. The overall point is that it does not matter. The question now should shift to, “What do you do about it?”
First Step Of A Better Future: Admitting You Made The Wrong Move & It Was A Mistake
The sad thing is that most people do not want to admit they have made a mistake. In which case, they will go ahead and continue to stay at the same firm in hopes that things will change. The reasons vary for this happening, but there are predominantly two. The first being that the firm offered you upfront money to make the move, and now that money is most likely gone. The second is that you are far too invested in the move to make a change mentally. You may be concerned that another move within a short time frame from your last will reflect negatively on you with your clients and in the general hiring marketplace. What you need to do is look at these two factors as we consider if another move is warranted after you made the wrong move.
Moving Money Before You’ve Made The Wrong Move
First of all, the upfront money. I counsel all of my candidates to take any upfront money you receive and put it in the bank for at least 6 to 12 months. This is unless you have to pay off a previous note, then you have no choice. By having that money sitting in the bank you now have control over your new position. If you made the wrong move and it does not work, you can certainly pay back the note if that is what was part of the agreement. On the other hand, you can get the new firm to potentially pay back the note as an inducement for them to hire you. Either way you are now in control of your fate. A bad situation can easily be remedied because you have the money to either pay back the note or to weather the storm while you look for a new position.
Your Moving Reputation
Secondly, your reputation. The perception that firms are not going to hire you because you just made a move does not hold as much water as it used to. With the flexibility of firms getting in and out of public finance (both on the banking as well as the legal side), good bond counsel as well as bankers are always in demand. By working with a recruiter, they can explain your position as to why you are actively looking for a new position after a short period of time – passively. If there is a valid reason for your disappointment in your current “new” position where you made the wrong move, there is no shame in this whatsoever. It would be much worse for you to remain for years where you are unhappy and will not get the economic reward that you were expecting for whatever reason. My recommendation is to admit to yourself that you are unhappy, seek counsel (either with a professional recruiter or somebody who knows you really well), and start planning your next move.
About Harlan Friedman, JD & Founding Member, H. Friedman Search LLC. Harlan is a thirty-year veteran Public Finance Banker turned recruiter who specializes in the placement of all level Public Finance Bankers, Health Care Bankers, Municipal Financial Advisors, Compliance Officers, Issuers, and Bond Counsels.