There are a few land mines you may have to navigate when asking for your job back.
Going to your former boss with your tail between your legs because you’d like your job back, is never easy. Whether it’s because the grass wasn’t quite greener on the other side, a position you wanted suddenly became available or you simply miss your previous work environment, going back to your old job may be necessary.
No matter your reasons for leaving, you’ll have to carefully think about a comeback strategy that’ll up your chances of making a successful return.
Can you go back?
Of course, if you burnt your bridges, venturing back over the bridge is going to be quite tricky. But if you left on good terms, you may be in for a win.
Test the waters before approaching your boss. A few trusted sources can help you figure out when the right time to approach your boss is. You’ll also be able to find out whether your position has been filled.
Another point worth your consideration is, should your boss take you back, are you in it for the long haul. You don’t want to go back to your job only to be reminded why you left in the first place. If you do decide to leave again, you can kiss your reputation goodbye. Your boss may also be unwilling to give you a reference should you ask for one.
Approaching your boss
Sure you’re familiar with the company and may even be buddies with your boss, but keep in mind that your boss won’t just accept your request at the click of a button. If you’ve only been away for a short period, you could just contact your former boss and let him or her know where you stand. But instead of making a phonecall, which may put your boss on the spot, pop him or her an email to give time for him or her to think about your request.
If you’ve been gone for a long time, you’ll need to dig a bit deeper. Get in touch with the receptionist to find out if your boss is still around.
Preparing for your return
Although your CV is usually a huge drawcard for what you can offer, in this case it doesn’t need to be overly creative. Your previous employer already knows what you did and how well you performed.
Rather pay attention to the skills you acquired while you were away, your best achievements, and more importantly, what value you bring to the company.
Be aware that if you’re interviewed by some unfamiliar faces they may be weary of your motive for coming back. They may even be annoyed if you left in haste or they spent a lot of time and money grooming you for your career.
Your job then will be to ensure that you reiterate that you’re committed to the company and your job and that you’re worth their investment again. Make sure you’re prepped for the dreaded “why you left” question. If you’re not sure how to answer the question, remember that honesty is the best policy.
Ask for feedback
Your former boss may be more than willing to take you back – especially if you were a star performer. When meeting with him or her don’t be afraid to ask for how your past job performance was. Be open and ready for any kind of feedback, and express your eagerness to grow in your career and position.