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After more than one month of interviews, I accepted a job offer and I signed a contract for a new job which is gonna start from the first of May.

After I signed the contract, a big company, which answered my application very slowly, contacted me. I did two technical phone interviews and I passed them. Now I am invited for a real one-day-interview on the last part of this month.

I feel bad towards the company with which I have already signed the contract and which ignores this ongoing recruitment process.

Sometime I feel like I shouldn't go to this new interview, but this company is a very important one and it might be a key-step in my career.

What should I do? Should have already signed a contract stop me to go to this new interview?


The situation is different from one in the similar question, as I am considering the new offer, as opposed to the other question which was about just going to the interview without an intent to accept if offered:

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    I do not think this is a dupe since the OP seems to be considering the new offer, as opposed to the op just going to the interview that he has no intent to accept if offered. – IDrinkandIKnowThings Apr 8 '13 at 13:24
  • "... and which ignores this ongoing recruitment process."?? Can you clarify? The way I interpret this, is that the company you signed with knows about the second company. – user8036 Apr 9 '13 at 12:00
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    Go interview with the company you really want to work for. If they hire you and you have to renege on the contract then you may burn a bridge but you are now working where you really wanted to work. As a side benefit, you'll probably interview better and negotiate better because you have nothing to lose. Also, bridges sometimes repair themselves. In 5 to 10 years when you are ready for another job, the company you backed out upon may not even remember you. Backing out before starting is far preferable, you only wasted minimal company time. Not so if you start and leave. – Dunk Apr 9 '13 at 21:50
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Contractually

Check your contract you signed with your current employer to check if there are any sorts of penalties for quitting immediately or otherwise breaking your contract.

Ethically

If you are going to quit, sooner is better than later. The company most likely still has their "runner-up" candidates, and many of them may not have taken another job yet if the company acts fast.

Realize that signing a contract and breaking it before you even start work is unprofessional, and will probably not make the best impression on that company.

Personally

Decide what's most important for you. Ethics or this career path. Make a decision with full knowledge that it's not a nice thing to do to a company, and then stick to that decision.

In the future, if you still think you have a chance elsewhere (especially somewhere you prefer), you may want to hold off on signing the contract to the new job.

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    @Joe: I would. It's just business. There are lots of reasons someone might agree to work, but leave after a very short time. I would wonder about the business intelligence of someone who thought an accepted offer of at-will employment was the same as a personal promise. – kevin cline Apr 10 '13 at 19:25

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