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You are applying for a new job, but you are having trouble getting your past hiring managers to put in a good word about you. What does that mean? Should you be worried about it? In some situations, people just may not be doing their job, but in others, a lack of response from your references could mean a bigger problem for you. Before you prod too much, make sure you know what to do, what not to do and how to handle situations where those references just are not there.

You Left on Good Terms?

Sometimes, people believe they left on good terms (this could mean giving the standard two weeks and doing your best through your last day), but that does not necessarily mean the company wasn’t happy to see you go. As harsh as it may seem, managers you have left behind may be unwilling to return your phone calls requesting a reference because they want to avoid having to give you a bad recommendation. Sometimes, they do not even want to tell you that – though they should be willing to contact you to tell you what is going on.

That’s Not the Case?

In some situations, the manager may just not be returning your calls for other reasons. In this situation, take steps to contact them in other ways. You may want to drop in the office to see them or pick up the phone and call during a different part of the day. You may want to talk to a different manager.

Your Current Manager Doesn’t Know You Are After a Job?

For those who are looking for a job and do not want their current employer to know it, it can be tricky to offer a solution for finding a reference. However, one option is to provide contact information for your current manager on the premise that the hiring manager only contacts that person if you are offered a position. Your position may be contingent on this reference, though. Only do this if you know you will get a great response.

When You Can’t Get a Reference

If you are heading into job interviews and struggling to get responses from references, it may be time to think of other options. Instead of contacting that manager, find others you have worked with in the past who may be willing to offer you a solution. You may want to talk to managers of any internships you have had.

Sometimes, you will have to bite the bullet and tell the interviewing manager you’ve been unable to get a reference from your previous employer. If that employer or manager has failed to contact you about the reference, make note of that at the time of the request. In situations where they have denied the request, you may need to be creative in your wording. However, any good hiring manager will want to find out why before hiring you for the job.

If you are looking for more tips on handling tough interview issues, or if you are just looking for a great new temporary or long-term assignment – take the time to contact the employment pros at TempStaff today.


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