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After 3 years of working at my current company I decided to leave for a new job. My notice period for my current employer is 4 weeks but I told my new employer it was 6 weeks to give me some time off. After giving in my notice to my current employer it turns out he is close friends with my new employer. I am concerned that they will discuss the discrepancy between the 2 different periods and the potential fall out from this. Should I be worried? Is there anything I can do now?

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    Do not sweat it. This happens all the time and they understand the reasons. It is not a big deal. In future if it comes up , tell them you had some personal work to attend to to . But i am sure it won't come up at all. Relax and enjoy – Learner_101 Apr 2 '16 at 16:59
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    I just left a company, I told my new employer that I was taking an additional week off before I started. In most cases they will understand. It is better to be upfront about it. – yonefive Apr 2 '16 at 17:41
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    @Learner_101 If it comes up again in the future, it would be best not to double-down on the lie. I would suggest being honest that you wanted time off. But I doubt that it will be much more than an embarrassment if it ever does come up in the future. – Kevin - Reinstate Monica Apr 2 '16 at 20:31
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    It's so common to have a short gap or vacation between jobs that I've never heard of anyone hiding it before. – Todd Wilcox Apr 3 '16 at 5:16
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    Unless they are both very small company and you work directly under the two guys, I doubt they would talk about you. Do they even know your name? – algiogia Apr 4 '16 at 9:16
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It was rather silly to lie and it was completely unnecessary.

Instead, you should have just told your new employer when you would like to start and avoided any lies. Taking just a few weeks off in between jobs is very common.

Unless these are two very small companies and you have a very prominent role in both, the two friends are unlikely to bring your name up.

That said, avoiding a lie in the first place is almost always the best course of action. Now, you need to be prepared with what you will say in the off chance that your new employer catches your lie. Perhaps something like "I'm embarrassed to admit that I just wanted an extra two weeks off." would work.

  • There's just absolutely no need to feel guilty for having a short gap between employment. You can simply say exactly what you planned on doing. "4 weeks notice, 2 weeks of personal time." You're not employed by anyone, there is no obligation that you MUST go from directly one job to another, and it really is, literally, your own time. – Nelson Apr 5 '16 at 6:02
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    There's nothing to be embarrassed about for wanting time off between jobs. However, one should be embarrassed about and apologize for lying. – stannius Apr 7 '16 at 17:48
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    @stannius I don't think Joe suggested the OP should be embarrassed -- it simply makes for a plausible explanation. – mcknz Apr 27 '16 at 23:28
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In the future, instead of talking about 'notice periods' to your new employer, talk about 'time before you're available'; you won't need to 'lie', it'll be generic enough to cover the notice period and the time you want to take to prepare for the new job.

Now with the issue at hand, I would not worry about it.

I would think that your new employer would be smart enough to understand that you wanted to take a break before starting the new job. It may be different for you but, where I live, vacation time takes time to accumulate and you'll have your next vacation in one year from your first day at the new place.

If the subject ever comes between you and him/her, just be frank and tell them you wanted to get some rest in order to be fresh, ready and primed for your new challenges. You can also mention that it had been a while since you had a 'real' vacation, if it's the case.

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    "Vacation time takes time to accumulate and you'll have your next vacation in one year from your first day at the new place." Wow, really? That's not how it works in the UK. Denying somebody annual leave for their whole first year of work would be completely unacceptable. – Lightness Races with Monica Apr 2 '16 at 17:07
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    In my experience, leave generally accumulates at a rate of 1 (or however many) days per month. Generally, your first three (or so) months you aren't allowed to take any leave (though you do accrue the days). – Doc Apr 2 '16 at 18:59
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    On the vacation subject, there is by no means a standard for this. It can vary widely based on industry, location, company culture, value of your skills and how much experience you have. For what it's worth, most places I've worked for have allowed going into arrears on vacation time as long as you're projected to earn it (usually within the calendar year). However, I have known people who were specifically forbidden to take leave for X months after starting. However, these were lower quality, easily-filled jobs. – bubbleking Apr 2 '16 at 21:41
  • @JoeStrazzere: Indeed. That's why it's best to avoid sweeping statements that have locale-specific truthiness. I've suggested an edit to remedy this. – Lightness Races with Monica Apr 2 '16 at 22:00
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    I know someone who works at a company where the entire year's vacation accrual is available at the start of the year. If you take it all at the beginning, you don't get any more until the next year. I've never once worked for any company that official policies stopping employees from taking any vacation accrued at any time (subject to normal approval around work schedules, coverage, etc.). This has been in California and Washington state, USA. I personally find it bizarre that you're restricted from taking vacation for a whole year. Wow! – CodeSeeker Apr 4 '16 at 0:47
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I am sure they are men of the world and understand you want a bit of breathing space.

Do not worry about it.

  • Just a reminder to keep it professional and polite and follow the Be Nice policy. – Jane S Apr 3 '16 at 0:19
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    @JaneS: This answer seems perfectly polite and "nice" to me. Are you responding to comments that have been deleted? – ruakh Apr 3 '16 at 18:21
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    @ruakh Yes, I was. – Jane S Apr 3 '16 at 20:13

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