BEN MARTINEZ
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The Reference Check Work Around

WindowsMany companies have instituted policies that won't allow managers to give out references about individual employees.  I know it sounds like an awful policy.  Especially if you have worked at the company for almost 30 years and done some great work for them.  So, let's understand why this policy exists.  Then talk about some work arounds. Two reasons for this policy.  First, companies fear litigation.  Many companies have been sued for giving negative references so they have decided it's just not worth it.  Second, cost.  It costs the company money to staff people to give references or have its managers provide references.  It's just not worth the cost, since the company gets little direct benefit.  So what do you do?

Be aware that this policy, like many HR policies, is often broken.  The only people I know that follow it are HR people.  How do I know this? Go check LinkedIn.  I see many managers who gave references to former employees.  Just saying.

If you see your former manager has given recommendations to others on LinkedIn.  Good chance he/she will do it for you.  Send him/her a recommendation request via LinkedIn.  Use that for your reference.  Boom.  By the time your company gets around to creating a policy against that, LinkedIn will be gone and some other new technology will replace it.

One other thing...It might be that your former manager does not want to give you a good reference.  Be aware and accept that.  Move on.  Find different people.  Other managers or former clients or vendors.  Find people who can speak to your character and work ethic.

In short, many companies institute policies that limit the information released about individual employees.  Makes sense, but can screw the good people who just want a reference so they can move on with their life. Good news is that there are alternate approaches to obtaining references.  People will never stop talking.  People follow people, not policies.  It is what it is...

Photo Credit: RMK life

PS--Hey Kristen how do I get my 2013 calendar?