I have been associated with a multinational corporation (MNC) working as a Software Engineer for 2 years now, as part of a graduate program which our company offers. In this program we have a job rotations to work in different sections of the company.

Though I enjoy software development and have a good rapport with my previous managers, I'd always planned for going for my MBA somewhere down the line. My previous manager was aware of this that I was preparing and would take a competitive exam (CAT) this year.

However, In December last year, I had to switch teams due to internal funding issues. I looked around the company for switching to another team with a similar profile. I had a fruitful discussion with the new manager regarding my previous work and the technology of the new team. The topic about leaving didn't arise and since I wasn't sure about going this year, I decided it was something I didn't need to mention. The team seemed like a good fit and I decided to join.

I scored better than expected in the exam (from ~45-50% in mocks, the scored moved to 63%, resulting in the top 0.1 percentile). Subsequently, I appeared for the interviews and got through into one of the Top B-Schools of India. It was an opportunity I was hesitant to slip by and decided to tender my resignation.

However, though my manager accepted the resignation, the relationship has slipped and is rocky. He mentioned that he didn't expect me to resign within 3 months of joining the team (+ 60 days notice).

Obviously I had not planned on leaving so soon either, but was it expected of me to mention my future plans in discussion beforehand since it may have well sabotaged my chances to join the current team?

  • "I had to switch teams" The alternative being that you'd lose your job? – Lilienthal May 15 '17 at 10:29
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    I've never heard of someone discussing their decision to leave with their manager prior to giving notice, and 60 days notice is loads of time. I think he'll just have to get over it, and accept "these things happen". – colmde May 15 '17 at 11:10
  • @Lilienthal I wouldn't have lost the job. I would've been accomodated somewhere, but this was a good fit. – Arcane May 15 '17 at 12:03
  • @Arcane Have you acknowledged the poor timing? I get the impression your question is less about "is this unethical?" and more about "How can I repair this relationship?" – Lilienthal May 15 '17 at 12:42
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    There's a distinction between lying and maintaining your privacy. This is the latter. – Jonathon Cowley-Thom May 15 '17 at 13:18

was it expected of me to mention my future plans in discussion beforehand since it may have well sabotaged my chances to join the current team?

That's really a question only your manager can answer. I suspect many would have taken the same path that you did (keeping your plans to yourself).

You chose to withhold the information from your new boss, and now he is surprised and perhaps hurt that you are leaving after only 3 months. It's understandable that the relationship has become somewhat rocky.

When you say "since I wasn't sure about going this year, I decided it was something I didn't need to mention" that seems to suggest that you knew this might turn into an issue. While you told your former manager, you specifically avoided telling your new manager - presumably because you valued being on this particular team.

Disclosing your hopes and plans may or may not have prevented you from joining the new team - there's no way to know. Maybe you would be on this team anyway. Maybe you would be on a different team. Maybe you would be fired (not likely).

These things happen. Just put it behind you and move on to your school. Your new boss will get over it. You may not be welcome back to this company, but other than that it is unlikely to have any real career impact.

If you are worried about bad blood between you, maybe a long talk with your new manager might clear the air a bit. If you explain why you are leaving so soon, and why you didn't feel comfortable mentioning your plans beforehand, it could help with his understanding at least.

  • Firing is impossible. I'll just have to grind out the remaining days of the notice to be served, though it does leave a bad aftertaste leaving on bad terms even if I am unlikely to be back in the same company. Thabks for youe input. – Arcane May 15 '17 at 12:05

There is not a thing wrong with what you did. Your boss is behaving like a spoiled child. Any manager should expect that any employee could leave at any moment.

From the perspective of some managers, there is never a good time for someone to leave. It is either too close to the beginning of the project or too close to the end or we are at a critical step, etc. Ignore this. You are not property and you are allowed to make your own career choices.

What you do until you leave is the best possible job. Stay professional even if the manager is not doing so. Document what you are doing so someone one else can pick it up, do any knowledge transfer they want you to do and let any antagonism on the part of the boss run over you like water. Don't respond in kind. When he gets angry, remind yourself that it is his personal problem and has nothing to do with you.

It is also natural that they will start to give the better tasks to peopel who are staying. This is particularly true when you have a long notice period as is common in some countries. Why should they give the more career enhancing things to someone who is leaving and who might not even finish before leaving? It is a big risk for them. So it's OK if they do that. Anyway, you are going for an MBA, so likely you won't be doing this type of work again. So accept graciously the less important assignments.

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