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I work on a project involves many companies, cooperating for the project. Outside of this and other shared projects, the companies are competitors.

I really like the project and I am sure I am appreciated by my team members. But for various reasons I am dissatisfied with the company I work for and it has got to the point where I know it is time to leave.

I am wondering if it would be professional to approach some of my team members from the other companies, to let them know I am job hunting and ask if they have any openings. I don't want to give a bad image of my company though.

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    These team members are essentially coworkers and typically you don't announce to coworkers that you are job hunting.
    – sf02
    Commented Oct 8, 2019 at 14:50
  • These team members are not your coworkers. If they have a good impression of you then they ought to pass you to someone relevant at their own company. If you didn’t make a good impression on them, they won’t.
    – gnasher729
    Commented Oct 9, 2019 at 11:21

2 Answers 2

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In general, this is a bad idea.

If you actually have a relationship outside of work, then maybe. Otherwise there is a chance it will get back to your company (your manager), and the repercussions of that will not be worth the inquiry.

Taking a chance that this will come back and haunt you for a small chance that an acquaintance can help you find your next opportunity is simply not worth the risk.

In short, I would begin my job search, letting as few people know as possible. Once you have your next job, then turn in the appropriate notice, and leave on good terms.

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This depends on a couple things:

1) What do you think your manager will say if he finds out you are leaving? Will he be vindictive about it, or will he try to retain you? I've heard in software engineering it's not uncommon for a manager to hear their subordinate is thinking of leaving their company, and then instead of being vindictive the manager tries to retain the subordinate. But that's up to your own situation.

2) How much do you trust your colleagues at the other company? If you say "don't tell my manager about this but I want to leave my current job and work with you instead", will they honour that request?

I think those are the 2 questions you need to answer. If you think that your colleagues at the other company are trustworthy and/or you think that your boss would try to retain you, rather than be vindictive, if he finds out you're leaving, then you should pursue this idea. If you think your boss would be upset if he finds out, and you think that there is a large chance he would find out if you talk to your colleagues at the other company, then you shouldn't do it.

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