It is quite clear my team manager and the general manager don't go along that well. The general manager thinks he is unfit and would like someone he knows well on the position. However the team manager has a running contract so we assumed there would be nothing to worry about.

I just overheard a recruiter on the phone plan a interview with 'Jack, new manager for team X'. Should I hint my current manager of team X?

He has done a lot for me when I first starter working here and has ensured I grew into the position I wanted to. I feel like I owe him, but I also have no facts to give him.

  • I tend to agree with "Noooooo" below but if you feel compelled to let him know out of loyalty or some other reason, do so only if you can do it completely anonymously and if you're ok with denying it when directly asked. Lying is bad, IMHO but I also understand why one might want to give a heads-up to a friend. If there's any way it can be discovered (or guessed) that you are the one informing him, just don't. You have to look out for yourself. I'll say again though, "No" is still the best option, imho. – Chris E Aug 9 '17 at 13:19
  • @ChristopherEstep - If everyone knows the general manager thinks the team manager is "unfit and would like someone he knows well on the position" I'd have to believe that team manager is actively pursuing contingency plans, if he has any sense at all. Having the big boss wanting your pelt on the wall is usually a pretty clear indication of job insecurity. So, informing the team manager would also probably not be actually informing him of anything he didn't already know/strongly suspect. (not disagreeing, adding to your comment) – PoloHoleSet Aug 9 '17 at 14:22
  • @PoloHoleSet I agree. He probably does know. But on the other hand, he may not realize just how motivated his boss is to replace him. – Chris E Aug 9 '17 at 14:48
  • @ChristopherEstep - people can have denial about that stuff. OP made it seem like pretty common knowledge, so one can hope. Personally, I'd be inclined to say something, if I felt I owed my boss. "Heard a recruiter talking about an interview for a position that sounded like yours, but I don't know that's the case...." or something. – PoloHoleSet Aug 9 '17 at 14:56
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    @PoloHoleSet I'd personally only consider telling him if I could trust him not to go to the boss about it. And that's a pretty tall order. Either way, I'd personally start looking for a job myself. New managers often want their own people as well, especially if there's any loyalty to the previous manager, which there is. – Chris E Aug 9 '17 at 15:01


You have:

  • No proof
  • No indication how well he'll take it (people might "shoot the messenger" so to speak)
  • No concrete certainty that you're interpreting what you heared correctly.

But you run the risk of:

  • Getting onto your manager's boss's super bad side by telling
  • stressing your manager out for no reason when you misheard / misinterpreted it
  • looking like someone who likes to office gossip (that is a label you should do your best to avoid)
  • Getting your manager into real trouble when it turns out you were wrong but told him and he went to his boss to ask about it, especially when they don't get along well
  • Admitting that you listened to what may have been confidential information

In conclusion:

It is in your and your managers best interest not to tell.


Understandably, it may be a bit uncomfortable to seem to have that kind of knowledge, but:

Assuming you have the correct understanding of what you overheard, you don't actually know whether the team manager will be fired, moved upwards or has already quit.

In these situations, concentrate on the potential upside compared to the downside. It seems your upside might be an emotionally closer bond to someone you believe is leaving anyway. The downside is that you perhaps are missing an important context and now will be perceived as a snoop or gossiper.


In my opinion, unless you are really sure about the situation, you should not advise anyone about that.

This can only cause trouble if that is not true and even if it is true, your general manager might get a bad idea about you.

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