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Old 06-26-2012, 02:21 PM
 
1,379 posts, read 1,819,726 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thebunny View Post
And we do it because we HAVE caught people lying this way. It helps us know that if we are getting consistent info from the people they WANT us to check and from those they would rather we didn't. It is also good to see what the people they don't want us to check will say. A bad reference is in the eye of the beholder. If we are super strict about OT (which we are as people already work a lot of scheduled hours so we prefer they not go over the schedules) and we talk to a former manager who complains that this employee was terrible because they were always expecting to leave work on time, well, that is a good thing for us.

We are also upfront about it and tell applicants any employer is fair game when we ask for references. We have had people withdraw the application at that point. And it really isn't that hard. For example, an applicant didn't get along with a former boss and gives a couple of coworker references from a different job. That coworker, if asked if the person had ever mentioned the previous job will often volunteer a LOT of info. So, we know the name of the former boss, we call the location listed on the resume and ask to speak to the person. Done.
My first company (a massive F500 corporation) out of college outsourced it to a firm to verify my qualifications. One of the strangest things about it was that the firm contacted my previous employer who I interned with and my previous employer never ever picked up the phone or replied to the firm. My references were also contacted and my references also never ever picked up or called back despite the firm leaving dozens of voicemails. This was all stated in the report that I received after the background check. The firm just gave up after my previous employer and references never responded. The funny thing is this firm never told me that this was happening and my employer (the F500 corporation) just didn't care at all about it. Essentially, they never verified my employment or contacted my references yet the company didn't care at all.

Later on, for other companies I interviewed with; when they were unable to verify my employment (due to that employer not picking up or responding), they would contact me immediately and I would give them alternative references or alternative phone numbers so that they could respond immediately. If they were unable to be contacted (and this happened), I would give them my W-2 or 1099 and this would be more than enough for them to verify my employment.
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Old 06-26-2012, 02:22 PM
 
Location: Chicago area
8,848 posts, read 13,349,098 times
Reputation: 16053
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mystique13 View Post
That's exactly my point. Some people hold grudges. Others suffer from bipolar mania and misunderstand things. Others want to sleep with you and you don't feel the same way.

You will encounter someone at your workplace who will hate you no matter how good you work. That person may turn out to be your boss or manager. Maybe you remind him or her of an ex-spouse too much. People can be seriously weird and F*d up sometimes.

So, does that mean you have to have this stigma for the rest of your life that is supposed to follow you and lay a curse on your future success?? Nope.
Except for most companies the minute they uncover a bad reference they reject the candidate and go silent without even giving the candidate the opportunity to address what the referee said. I'd say 90% of the time a bad reference is more about the person giving the reference (like the case with the OP) than the subject of the reference.

In the case of the OP he worked for an abusive jerk who cheated on the payroll taxes and tried to change the job to squeeze more and more work out of the employee and the minute he pushed back he got fired. The bad reference has more to do with the boss than the employee.
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Old 06-26-2012, 02:28 PM
 
Location: California
4,402 posts, read 11,640,923 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MSchemist80 View Post
Except for most companies the minute they uncover a bad reference they reject the candidate and go silent without even giving the candidate the opportunity to address what the referee said. I'd say 90% of the time a bad reference is more about the person giving the reference (like the case with the OP) than the subject of the reference.

In the case of the OP he worked for an abusive jerk who cheated on the payroll taxes and tried to change the job to squeeze more and more work out of the employee and the minute he pushed back he got fired. The bad reference has more to do with the boss than the employee.
You don't think those of us who call references know this? Its a little like knowing what your kids are doing because you were once a kid. You have the experience to be able to tell the difference between the truth and the failure to tell the truth. A lack of consistency is usually telling, as is the bad reference who keeps saying "company policy says I am not able to talk to you" and talks anyway. However (let the bashing begin) the bad reference, one who contradicts what the prospective employee says, etc...but is professional and gives valid reasons for the bad reference...is invaluable.
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Old 06-26-2012, 02:31 PM
 
Location: The City That Never Sleeps
2,043 posts, read 4,874,819 times
Reputation: 3341
Quote:
Originally Posted by MSchemist80 View Post
Except for most companies the minute they uncover a bad reference they reject the candidate and go silent without even giving the candidate the opportunity to address what the referee said. I'd say 90% of the time a bad reference is more about the person giving the reference (like the case with the OP) than the subject of the reference.

In the case of the OP he worked for an abusive jerk who cheated on the payroll taxes and tried to change the job to squeeze more and more work out of the employee and the minute he pushed back he got fired. The bad reference has more to do with the boss than the employee.
That's right. Of course! It's always about the person giving the ref, not the employee.

I've heard worse stories. And all the victims were only able to move on with their lives by omitting that negative reference from their lives. We all have to move on at some point.
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Old 06-26-2012, 03:09 PM
 
1,379 posts, read 1,819,726 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mystique13 View Post
That's right. Of course! It's always about the person giving the ref, not the employee.

I've heard worse stories. And all the victims were only able to move on with their lives by omitting that negative reference from their lives. We all have to move on at some point.
Sometimes you can't omit that negative reference since there is a chance the company conducting the reference check wants that negative reference especially if it was your direct report or in the case of the OP, the only person at the company.
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Old 06-26-2012, 03:18 PM
 
Location: California
4,402 posts, read 11,640,923 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by X14Freak View Post
Sometimes you can't omit that negative reference since there is a chance the company conducting the reference check wants that negative reference especially if it was your direct report or in the case of the OP, the only person at the company.
Yup. Also in the case of the OP, it is the most recent employment. So that makes it even harder to avoid disclosing....people want to talk to the most recent employer.
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Old 06-28-2012, 09:34 AM
 
7 posts, read 10,667 times
Reputation: 21
Default Keep your mouth shut and...

I suggest you get the book "Resume Magic" available at the public library. Or "Knock'm Dead Resume's" which will show you examples and even formats to how to work around these type of issues. It is generally a bad idea to even mention any negativity either at the interview or on your resume'. Keep in mind that these are great problem solvers and it is free visuals that will help you.

I worked for a company a few years back who were down right abusive to their employees. I resigned but not before complaining about being harrassed by the supervisor (who had a history of the same) Anytime you upset the apple cart, you are placing yourself in a future problem. So check out these resources and keep your mouth shut. Better to ask forgiveness if it comes up then to bring attention to an issue. Makes you look bad. JMO
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Old 06-28-2012, 01:02 PM
 
3,721 posts, read 3,931,248 times
Reputation: 3366
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mystique13 View Post
Further, the interviewing process is a two way street. Angry and paranoid managers are easy to diagnose at interviews.You observe the body language, ask the right questions, and they get defensive. There is plenty of info both online and in the business research libraries on companies that the candidate can pull up,if they really want to and if such person has the skills. Some lawsuits are public record; all you have to do is go to the court clerk or pull it up online.

Digging for dirt is easy with the Internet.

You are right about that Mystique. You ask something they don't like and they get visually uncomfortable and defensive. But hey, fair is fair. If I am being grilled, expect to be grilled in return. The interviewer is not the only one who can ask questions.
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Old 06-28-2012, 04:06 PM
 
Location: California
4,402 posts, read 11,640,923 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hopefulone View Post
You are right about that Mystique. You ask something they don't like and they get visually uncomfortable and defensive. But hey, fair is fair. If I am being grilled, expect to be grilled in return. The interviewer is not the only one who can ask questions.
I agree. And I expect interviews to be give and take. If I interview someone, I want them asking questions and asking me follow up questions to anything I mention. If they are not engaged in the interview and are just letting me ask them questions, I am not happy about them and the interview experience.
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Old 06-28-2012, 09:33 PM
 
2,681 posts, read 6,286,175 times
Reputation: 4143
Question interesting...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Coco6163 View Post
That is a high risk play. In many states, employers are protected against being sued for giving bad references. Some states even protect employers who defame former employees unless the former employee can show that the defamation was wilfull or malicious. In the context of defamation, showing a wilfull or malicious form of defamation is very difficult. If the former employee sends a lawyer-written cease and desist letter, the employer might very well show it to the employer's lawyer. Then the employer's lawyer explains how much protection the employer has, and the next thing you know, the gloves are truly off for the employer to give a negative reference. I would not take that chance.
not sure which states you are refering to but I would sure like to know. My understanding is that 'No employer' may give detrimental info regarding any past employee to prospective new employers w/out fear of being sued for possible 'malicious intent and wilfull and malicious defamation'. Employers are not protected from such things.
Koale
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