Is it wise to re-join an organization that you have moved on from? Whether it is the recognition of your true worth (finally!), a much bigger role with a CTC to match or just the prestige and honour of being called back, it can be tempting to accept an offer from a previous employer.
We spoke to executives who had been approached by organizations they had previously worked for and decided to get to the heart – and head – of the decision-making process.
We help you weigh up the pros & cons of the decision to join a previous employer.
Career Growth Trajectory
There is a better chance of a previous employer offering you a position that you want and putting you on a fast growth trajectory. Your reputation precedes you and since the organisation wants you back, it gives you the high ground in a negotiation as compared to a newcomer. This is an opportunity to make a quantum jump while making a significant contribution to the organization.
However, do consider the long term implications. Sustained growth over a period of time should not be undermined through a temporary jump. Go beyond the improved designation and higher compensation and evaluate the intrinsic challenges offered by the assignment.
Knowledge of the Organization
The fact that you are well-versed with the culture and processes of the organization is a definite plus, when rejoining your previous workplace. As you know how things are done, you can move in seamlessly and right away focus on the job at hand. The organisation too recognizes that the individual is familiar with the company systems and ideology. The result is greater trust and support from the management, especially in key projects.
However, it’s important not to make the assumption that key people, processes, policies – & philosophies – have stayed the same. It could be worth while to ensure that key factors influencing your call have not changed since your last tenure.
The Peer Group Factor
Getting back into the comfort zone of familiar people, networks & surroundings can be a tremendous feel-good factor. But this one could have a sting in the tail.
The chances are that someone from within the organization was passed over in favour of your candidature. Or that annual increments did not keep pace with the offer rolled out to tempt you back. Some colleagues may believe that your gains happened at their cost or that by simply leaving the organization your standing has gone up a few notches without any real justification. Typically, there will be resentment from peers and resistance of your authority from people down the line, handling not-too-helpful colleagues is one of the more serious challenges that will come with the decision to return. Expect to spend the first few weeks re-connecting & networking with earlier colleagues to assess how equations that have changed.
While there is no real way of telling what surprises await you, you can be sure that there will be a few. For instance, you might discover that a person that you considered to be an ace resource, has grown complacent. Or that a senior management team has become less accessible to you, contrary to your earlier impression.
Hidden surprises may well be pleasant surprises too. That new department head might just mean that it is easier for you to get certain projects moving or build a better cross-department understanding.
From the CEO down, it’s all eyes on you. There is speculation about what you bring to the table and you will need to deliver on significantly higher expectations. In some organizations, this may take the form of subtle one-upmanship between those who stayed behind and someone who has moved out.
However, the company has already proven its inherent trust by re-hiring you and you and that’s what counts.
Today we are witnessing an upward trend across industries to rehire. So when an opportunity does come knocking, make the most of it!