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I'm in UK and I’ve just resigned as I’ve accepted a new role at a direct competitor (a better package). I have two questions I'm hiding for help on.

  1. I asked my manager what to do next when handing in my notice, I was told to wait until she got back to me with a plan. I heard nothing, ..until a few days later, 10 mins after returning from a funeral (they knew i was at).

    Without any prior warning, my manager sent an email to the whole business announcing my departure and also the company I’m moving to.

    Is she allowed to disclose this without my permission? I can't seem to find a definitive answer anywhere!

  2. I work on a commercially sensitive team, and I’m expected to work on business as usual (pitch material to win multi million pound business) right until my leave date, (3 months notice). We are regularly up against the company I'm moving to, should this be flagged as a risk? (We do have an anonymous tip-off service). I'm assuming that the answer to this one is that it's the managers discretion?

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    If you didn't want people to know where you were going, you could have just not told your manager in the first place. May 2, 2023 at 7:39
  • How would you react if you were on a team and you were told what you're telling us? What would your gut feeling be? How would you behave in the following days doing business and collaborate with that person?
    – OldPadawan
    May 2, 2023 at 8:36
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    @PhilipKendall on the other hand leaving a business in sales to work for a direct competitor probably required a discussion with someone to make certain you weren't breaking any non-compete clauses, etc.
    – Questor
    May 2, 2023 at 21:08

2 Answers 2

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Your manager was entitled to tell the rest of the team that you are leaving. That allows everyone to make plans for how to handle things while you serve your notice and once you are gone. It might have been courteous to discuss the timing and content of her email with you ahead of time, but courtesy isn't obligatory. Including the name of your future employer makes everyone aware of potential conflicts of interest while you serve your notice. I don't know of any reason she's not allowed to do that. Even if there was, what purpose would it serve now to make a thing of it? In my experience, when someone leaves all their colleagues want to know where they are going to - your manager may have just saved you answering the same question a hundred times, and/or being the subject of speculation and gossip.

As for the conflict of interest, telling your manager where you are going is enough notification. If the company thought you were a risk to be there at all, they would place you on gardening leave. They may still do that at any time. If they think you are a risk for a particular project or task, they may give that to someone else and you might find you spend the next three months cut out of the interesting work. Your responsibility now is to behave professionally in the best interests of your current employer for the 3 months they continue to pay you, and your colleagues know to raise it with your manager if they think you are not doing so.

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On question 1:

Unless you've indicated that you don't want it to be announced for reasons or you want to defer the announcement, then your manager has within their discretion the right to announce it to your team. On this one, you've no standing.

On question 2:

This is realistically a company decision to make - however it is not uncommon in situations like this to go on Gardening Leave. That is, the company says "It's in our best commercial interest that you don't take an in-depth knowledge of our most recent dealings to our direct competitor - so we are going to pay you to sit at home 'Gardening' (hence the name) during this period"

Now, if you are uncomfortable with that fact - you can raise it to your management and let them know, that despite your best efforts, if you are on the cutting edge, you are going to be privy to commercially sensitive information that will go with you (in terms of memory and knowledge) to your new employer.

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    @HappyIdiot - Many reasons, but normally it's either Corporate knowledge or it's Client list. Consider say a Formula 1 team, their lead engineer announces their resignation from Ferrari to go to Mclaren. Ferrari then pays that engineer their full salary to sit at home for a year and do nothing because that has more value to the company than letting them take all their institutional knowledge about their latest developments to their competitor It's common in various industries, not just F1 May 14, 2023 at 2:43

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