A colleague (who currently works at the company) told me that he is creating a new business that would be a direct competition of our current company.

He also asked me to help him with a job for his new business due to my skills, but I rejected that proposition.

I just want to forget that matter and never discuss it, but what should I do?

  • 12
    You... forget the matter and never discuss it. What do you need help with?
    – rath
    Commented Dec 2, 2018 at 4:13
  • 2
    Sounds like he wants you as part of his business, best to ignore it, it's unlikely to be viable if he doesn't have the skillset to pull it off on his own. It's just spreading the risk to you.
    – Kilisi
    Commented Dec 2, 2018 at 4:26
  • 1
    Yet another absurd downvote on SE.
    – Fattie
    Commented Dec 2, 2018 at 11:05
  • 1
    So is your problem that you dont want to work for your friendor that you know that he is working on setting up a competeing business while still being employed at yout employer?
    – Sascha
    Commented Dec 2, 2018 at 12:07
  • 1
    what is the conflict of interest that concerns you? the fact your co-worker is starting a competitor of his current employer?, the fact you have been recruited to this competitor? are you diciding if you should tell your boss? Commented Dec 2, 2018 at 12:28

3 Answers 3


You should forget that matter and never discuss it. You are not responsible for the decisions of your friend. It is not your solemn duty to report this to anyone. Just go about your day.

  • 4
    no idea why this was downvoted, it's a solid strategy.
    – Kilisi
    Commented Dec 2, 2018 at 5:02

When you have a sought after skillset people will often try and factor that into their own agenda if they can. Don't let that happen without clear gain to yourself. In this case you should just ignore your colleague since you're not interested and have no need to take any risks.

There is no need to take it further in any direction including reporting it unless there is a clear personal benefit in doing so and it can be done without negative repercussions. Lastly, if it's not documented, it didn't happen.

In some circumstances if it is provable or you have good rapport with management it might be worth giving them a quiet heads up, if it's a niche service or market where competition will not generate it's own clients but must take others clients, then it is a direct threat to your job security. However these often have non competing clauses written into contracts.

  • 3
    This is the perfect answer.
    – Fattie
    Commented Dec 2, 2018 at 10:50
  • 3
    OP should also pay attention to his employment contract as there are often clauses that prevent going to the competition. Commented Dec 2, 2018 at 11:58

It is common practice in the industry that when ever a new industry is established they hire skilled human resource from the already existing successful companies. It not only provides expertise in that field but also divert other experienced employees towards new setup and creates salary competition among owners which ultimately benefit skilled employees . It is common and effective strategy to start new business which your friend has used.

It is entirely your choice that you can decide to accept his offer by evaluating future career appourtunities and salary setup.

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