I have accepted a offer with a new company.

After my last debacle, I have thoroughly discussed with the new employer their technology stack, their work culture, their future timelines and my capabilities and interest areas. After much discussion, I decided to join this company and having accepted their offer, I informed my manager.

As soon I started my conversation, he seemed to be highly pissed off. He started trying me to stay by emotionally blackmailing me by saying I'll be hampering his reputation, etc.

He promised me that he will move me to another project which utilizes my skill-set, but what I have seen there are hardly any project being build in my tech stack.

Since we both belong to same geographical area and can speak same language, some of his words spoken in our native tongue can be taken in multiple different meanings, some of which were threatening in nature.

I'm a bit scared that he might sabotage my references and other chances in future since he is more than 20 yrs of experience and has a lot of contacts in the technical domain. How do I handle this situation?

  • 6
    Are you overthinking? Probably, yes. Will your manager sabotage your references? No one knows. Give only that reference who you think will give you a position feedback. Go to your new job and stop thinking about negative vibes inducing colleagues.
    – Sara
    Jan 27 '20 at 6:58
  • 11
    If your new employer needs to check your last employer, they can always call HR. Do not give him as a reference. Whatever you do, do not give out the name of the new company you're moving to. Do not give it out to anyone you work with. Even if they're your friend, your current boss could coerce them into telling him. And wait until you're settled into your new job for a few months before you update your LinkedIn with the new company. Jan 27 '20 at 7:57
  • @StephanBranczyk thanks, wanted to ask that as well, like whether to tell company details to anyone or not and when to update stuff.
    – Sp0T
    Jan 27 '20 at 8:54
  • Don't worry. His contacts in the technical domain have also had 20 yrs of experience with him. Jan 27 '20 at 21:13
  • @Sara your comment would make a good answer.
    – magisch
    Jan 28 '20 at 13:17

The simple option is - don't use this person as a reference. You say you already have accepted the new job, so that will be who a future interviewer will want to talk to - they almost certainly won't care about talking to anyone from 2 or more jobs back in the past. (Background checks are different - but will likely not involve this particular individual, either, unless he's the owner of the company you're leaving, too).

You also do not have to use a direct manager for most references - you can usually use anyone who you worked with (for example, I used one of my teammates when moving to my last job).

Sometimes, companies have policies that only HR are allowed to provide references - this is to prevent abuse by malicious actors, and also because references can open up the referee and their company to libel if they cast false aspersions.

So - don't worry about it, and good luck with the new job.


Yes, you are overthinking this, if any one individual had the ultimate power to control and manage the life and career choices for all their reportees, nobody might have been able to switch.

Sad but true, some people / managers resort to this level of unprofessional acts (threatening / badmouthing) in an attempt to retain employees, to hide their own incompetency to be able to manage properly. Do not submit to their threats (or whatever words they have used), continue as you planned. If they are behaving like this now, do you see any reason to expect a fair behavior and professionalism if you submit to their threats?

Just don't have this manager in your reference list - you'll find many others to provide you with a good reference, once you move on.


Ignore him. No one who acts this childish will have a reputable name or 20 years of powerful contacts. They'll always say they do, though.

I've had bosses pull similar stunts on me before. Up until that point I actually felt bad about job hunting. After that stunt, they can... do things to themselves that I would never specify on a public forum. For professionalism's sake, let's just say "pound sand".

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