Transitioning from one employer to another can be tricky, especially if they are competitors in the same line of business. And, it does not even matter whether you are a newly hired laborer or you are moving into one of the highest paying jobs. Are there trade secrets? Were you hired to get “an edge” over the competition? How much do you really know about your new work and how is it different from what you were doing? How great is “company loyalty” at your new employer? Here are some ideas to help make the transition easier and avoid some common pitfalls.
This Is How I Did It At ABC
Assuming you never worked for this new employer before, verbalized comparisons between your former employer and your new employer should definitely be avoided. Such discussions are bound to lead to defending certain processes, procedures, policies or practices; and you do not want to be put in that position. If you are asked, particularly by your superior, answer to the best of your ability, knowledge, and recollection. However, if you are asked by other employees, be careful how you answer. If these employees begin executing or suggesting a new process, procedure, policy or practice, they may, or may not, the reference you or your former employer; but if they are questioned about why they changed, your name may be mentioned, which may not be good for you. Moreover, if you know that another employee may start doing their work differently as a result of your informal discussions, seriously consider advising your superior; but do so in private and with discretion.
This Is How ABC Did It
If the two companies are competitors and have made wise decisions, particularly about products and marketing those products, you should not even have to think about comparisons. Both enterprises know much about each other and their processes, procedures, policies and practices. It is part of knowing your competition. If you think ABC did a better, more efficient or economical approach, keep it to yourself, at least for the first few days, weeks or maybe even months. The insinuation that ABC is superior in a particular approach may directly or indirectly appear as though you are being critical. This should be avoided. There is an excellent possibility that you presently do not know enough about how and why your new employer conducts their business to even address the issue. However, if your boss asks, again, answer to the best of your ability, knowledge and recollection. If you are asked in the presence of colleagues, make your comments objective and direct answers to the inquiries. Try not to make a judgment about which is superior; that will be for your superior and others to decide.
Come across to both your boss and your colleagues as humble and unassuming. Thoroughly understand how and why your new employer does what they do, before you even think about verbalizing comparisons with what you did at ABC. It is often very easy to come across as a “know it all,” even though that was not what you meant or intended. And keep in mind, it is often more important how you say something than actually what is said.
In short, exercise discretion, do not volunteer information about how ABC does it, show some humility, mind your own business and perform your job, duties and responsibilities to best of your ability. In most cases, it will be a wise decision to let weeks or months pass before even bringing up the subject of comparisons with ABC.
Thank you for reading!