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I just got a new job offer, and they want me to start in two days because there's an event they'd like me to be at. I think this event would be beneficial and would like to go, but I want to give my current employer two weeks' notice. As I see it, my options are:

  1. Leave my job tomorrow and start the new job in two days (no two weeks' notice).
  2. Give two weeks' notice at my current job and don't go to the event at my new job.
  3. Give two weeks' notice and ask for the day off from my current job to go to the event at my new job (time off requests usually need to be approved further in advance).

Out of respect to my current employer, I'd like to give two weeks' notice, so option 1 seems like a bad choice.

Option 2 seems fine, but I'd really like to go to the event if possible because I think it would help with my on-boarding process.

Option 3 seems like my best option in terms of balancing my current and future employment. But, I'm not sure how or if I should approach my new employer about being compensated for my time at the event before my start date following the two week notice period. It's a part time (18.5 hr/week) job.

Which option is best, and if I go with option 3, what would be the best way to communicate with both employers?

  • Is this event only one day? And do you have to tell your employer that would be where you are going? – Peter M Aug 27 '18 at 22:42
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    Did you make it clear to your potential future boss that you had a two-week notice period? If so, are they suggesting you should go to this event or they withdraw their offer? – user34587 Aug 28 '18 at 7:12
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    What does your current contract of employment say about a notice period? – Mawg says reinstate Monica Aug 28 '18 at 9:31
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    I've been in situations like this before. My experience is that an employer that tries to push you around before you've even started won't improve once you actually do start. I'd be wary. – Mike Harris Aug 28 '18 at 19:35
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    @Mawg: There's a united-states tag on this. In most of the US, employment is explicitly at-will, saying that either the employee or employer can terminate employment at any time and for any reason (except some explicitly illegal ones). It is also usual to work in the US without a formal contract of employment (I show up and work and they pay me is adequate evidence of an existing contract). A two-week notice period is a normal courtesy. – David Thornley Aug 29 '18 at 15:27
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Alternative to your suggestions: You talk to your manager. You tell him that you would like to give two weeks notice, and have that one particular day off. If he thinks he needs the full two weeks notice, offer staying one more day. You can always give fifteen days notice instead of fourteen. (Just noticed "It's a part time job". I'm sure you can put two days work into one day then, if you are only working four hours a day).

A reasonable manager will be fine with this, and the problem is solved. If the manager is unreasonable and doesn't want to give you the day off, check whether you are in a location where you may leave without notice, and tell him that in this case you will give notice to the day before the event. As far as I know, the 14 days notice in the US is professional courtesy. If the company is unreasonable, the courtesy goes away. This may very well make that manager change his mind.

Obviously all that only happens if you signed a contract with the new company.

BTW. "Time off requests need to be approved in advance". What is the old company going to do? Fire you?

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Is this event required for employees of your potential new employer or is their attendance considered optional? Seriously, this is important.

If the event is required for employees of the new company and you feel you need to provide more than 2 days notice, decline the event. Outside of the obvious professional courtesy to your existing employer, the other and maybe even more practical reason to decline is the (new employer's) payroll/HR paperwork. New employee paperwork is often an afterthought for Hiring managers, so your potential new manager may have not even asked internally if this could be allowed or if it were even feasible. For instance, you may need to clear a background check, fill out W2 forms, etc. before you're allowed to go to the event, meaning your attendance is likely not feasible from an payroll/HR standpoint. If you don't know the answer to this question, you should ask your potential new manager immediately as I suspect that will provide you with the best information to make your decision.

If the event is optional, such as a conference that the new employer will cover fees for, you could always inform them you are willing to go to the event, but you still require multiple weeks notice for your current employer. Hopefully you are able to take the day off with the current employer, go to the event, and then submit ample notice after your return. Everyone wins with this scenario, though I find it less likely to occur.

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