I left my previous employer for a new company half-mindedly, mostly because I couldn't find a better opportunity. After working for just 1 month, I have interviewed for another company. The interview went well and I feel there are good chances I might get the job. However, I expect the results will take around a month. I find this job much more aligned with my interests.

Meanwhile, my current company is on the verge of making a significant monetary investment on me in the form of trainings abroad.

What is an ethical way to inform my employer of the possibility that I might leave? Should I inform my manager before hand about the opportunity I may get, and that he should postpone the trainings? If I don't get the new job, will it be a threat to my current job?

EDIT : As pointed out correctly, my company might get hit by a bus if I leave. There will be no loss in terms of loss of expertise, as I am new to the company, but only a financial loss because it is not usual for my company to send people abroad for trainings because of the costs involved. I was hired with the understanding that I would stay for a substantial duration, and I might go back on my word.


3 Answers 3


That one might leave is the assumed risk every employer takes with every one of his employees, since slavery has ended. This is just the entrepreneurial risk your employer has to take to get the benefit profiting from your work. You have no obligation to anything other than agreed upon in your work-contract.

You should never volunteer information that could potentially harm your interest. You employer usually will not ask whats ethical but whats legal and efficient to him. If your employer knows you are thinking about leaving, this will not be beneficial to you. He will not invest in you any more and he will probably fire you to free up the position for somebody they think they can count on.

That said, watch carefully: How long is your notice period? Are you obliged to pay back some of the investment they made in you, if your leave before a certain time?

Addendum: You can of course disclose your plans as an act of fairness - but be prepared to be out of a job immediately. The upside is this may give you a better reputation which may be important in small towns or nice industries. You have to weight the benefit of that reputation against the (possible) loss of income.

  • No. I am not obligated to payback anything. It's just that my manager has been very helpful to me and I don't want to hurt him. Am I thinking too much?
    – johngreen
    Mar 22, 2018 at 10:33
  • @aakashbhowmick Regarding the "helpful manager", I have fully explained the situation in my answer below.
    – Fattie
    Mar 22, 2018 at 13:22
  • You're leaving a job after only a month, with the employer potentially spending a lot of money on you. You're going to cause some "hurt," that's not avoidable. Hurt to the company in the form of lost investment, and hurt to your reputation in terms of the employer having a negative opinion of you and potentially spreading that to other employers. Yes, employers take a risk that anyone can leave at any time, but it's not typical to leave so shortly after having made a commitment to the employer.
    – dwizum
    Mar 22, 2018 at 13:24

While I agree with @Daniel on the nature of the business relationship between you and your employer, there is some grace you can show in situations like this. I don't mean doing something against your best interest, such as telling them you're interviewing for another company. But don't go all out and completely burn the bridges by going to the training either. It might be in your long-term best interest to not do so as well. You never know when you'll meet the people here in another context.

So I'd say try to find a way to postpone the training until you're 100% sure of the new job happening or not happening. You can say something generic such as needing a bit of time before the training for personal reasons. But in general companies should be flexible with these things, and they shouldn't pry into why you can't travel right now for business. This might mean also pushing the new company to hurry up their process. I'd say 1 month is a bit much for a recruitment process.


Even if you don't get fired you will go to the bottom of the list for training, long project, and promotion. You are announcing you don't intend to stay.

An idea. Tell them:

For personal reasons I would like to delay the training until xx. If that is not an option I can attend. I prefer to delay if it is convenient for you.

If they reply you need to attend now and you later quit you can tell them that was the personal reason for wanting to delay.

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