I've worked for a very small consultancy firm for just over 2.5 years now - I've thoroughly enjoyed working here, and still do. My line manager is the Managing Director who owns the company.
Recently, however, and purely for personal development reasons I've decided to move into self-employed consulting/contracting. It's taken many months to get to that "Right, I'm doing it!" stage, but I'm now at a point where my CV is attracting attention and I'm keeping a very close eye out for the right opportunity.
Now, as is standard practice, I've kept this very much to myself and haven't felt bad doing so because I simply don't know WHEN the time will come. I'm hoping sooner rather than later, but like I say, I still like my job and if it takes months rather than weeks then so be it.
This hasn't been a problem, but my MD messaged me the other day (We're often in different places in the country) and told me he wants to have a meeting with me to discuss my career within the company. Now, in bigger companies these are just paper-shifting exercises and I've never had a problem just cruising through them and saying the right thing, but there are some facts that make me uncomfortable with this:
- I may leave sooner rather than later, making it very obvious I knew during this discussion
- I believe my boss actually cares and wouldn't have asked to speak to me otherwise
- That said, there are no different job opportunities in this company. I can't become more senior and I can't earn anywhere near what I think I can self employed. This is purely to discuss what exactly my current job entails and what things I'd like to be involved in.
- The company has been very good to me and while looking out for oneself is important, there's a line where it becomes selfishness and being ungrateful
- My specialism is a small world and the chances of interacting in future are high. Additionally, I really don't want to burn my bridges here and would gladly work with or for them in future.
But I also feel that going in and being truthful won't end well for me at all. At the moment, being conservative with the truth seems to be the lesser of two evils but I wonder if there's a better way that I'm missing?