Author Topic: Return to a company that laid you off? Other career options as PM??  (Read 4063 times)

fuzzed

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 66
  • Location: SW Ontario Canada
I have a couple of questions for the mustachian forum today. 

My Background:  Late 40's, married, no kids, will be mortgage free on three properties November 2015.  FIRE date is Feb of 2022.   Main career career focus 10 plus years as a software developer followed by 10 plus years as an IT Project Manager. (PMP).  Currently work for an extremely large financial institution,  managing releases to the customer facing part of the online business.  Heavily regulated, process heavy,  literally need 3 levels of approvals to use the washroom kind of stuff.   High stress, high workload, ok pay and benefits, but sucking the life out of me.   The work itself is fun, the governance, reorgs and agendas is what is killing me.   Nothing unique, I realize.

Question 1.   Other careers that build on IT and IT Project Management.  As there are quite a few software developers on this forum, it stands to reason there must be Project Managers too.   So for all you in that field, any of you make a jump into something else?  I have no interest in PMO's or anything like that, what other options have you considered?  Account management, Sales??  I am a bit stumped as to what are the options out there...

Question 2  Would you return to a company that laid you off?   I was let go about 5.5 years ago by a very large tech company, it was a numbers thing, last in, first out.   I got my current job right away, upgraded my skills and made a lot more money than I was making, so no hard feelings.   Fast forward, my former boss has approached me about coming back, to a more senior version of my old job, but with slightly more money than i currently make.   The job should be a lot less stress, fewer hours and despite the company being massive, this is its owns self contained group more or less, so a bit immune from the bigger org.   They have a mandate to hire, quite a few people and to grow the business.  Hiring fulltime employees in IT, at least in Canada is almost unheard of anymore.    So, would you go back, or is it a really bad idea?

Any feedback appreciated.

Thanks.

scottish

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1405
  • Location: Ottawa
Re: Return to a company that laid you off? Other career options as PM??
« Reply #1 on: August 21, 2015, 06:49:22 AM »
Would you like the work better at your old company?

I'm a red panda

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 8011
  • Location: United States
Re: Return to a company that laid you off? Other career options as PM??
« Reply #2 on: August 21, 2015, 06:50:31 AM »
I did return to a company that laid me off.  I got a higher salary when I returned, but I was no longer  grandfathered under my good benefits and the new ones sucked.

I understood the reason for the layoff (it was contract based work, and the company lost the contract)- so it was fine.

I left for other reasons. The work culture there just did not work for me.


Can't help you with project management. I don't know anything about it- except that we are always at war with the PMs here :)   (I'm in development, and the PMs don't seem to understand that what we develop doesn't just appear at thin air, whereas our department doesn't seem to understand that it's not like the PMs just make up date to spite us. It's a fun relationship.)

fuzzed

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 66
  • Location: SW Ontario Canada
Re: Return to a company that laid you off? Other career options as PM??
« Reply #3 on: August 21, 2015, 06:53:55 AM »
Would you like the work better at your old company?

In theory yes, but time makes everything seem better that it was.  There were some great people who are still there, all the not so great people were let go/left in the past 5 years.    My wife did remark that she never once remembered me not liking my job there, and when i was there, I had no intention of ever leaving.   

fuzzed

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 66
  • Location: SW Ontario Canada
Re: Return to a company that laid you off? Other career options as PM??
« Reply #4 on: August 21, 2015, 06:55:34 AM »

Can't help you with project management. I don't know anything about it- except that we are always at war with the PMs here :)   (I'm in development, and the PMs don't seem to understand that what we develop doesn't just appear at thin air, whereas our department doesn't seem to understand that it's not like the PMs just make up date to spite us. It's a fun relationship.)
   Ha, that was the exact reason i moved to PM.   I got tired of PM's not knowing about what developers did, and I was going to change the world.   So my advice, STAY a developer :)

RyanAtTanagra

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1122
  • Location: SF Bay, CA
Re: Return to a company that laid you off? Other career options as PM??
« Reply #5 on: August 21, 2015, 08:14:16 AM »
my former boss has approached me about coming back, to a more senior version of my old job, but with slightly more money than i currently make.   The job should be a lot less stress, fewer hours and despite the company being massive, this is its owns self contained group more or less, so a bit immune from the bigger org.

There were some great people who are still there, all the not so great people were let go/left in the past 5 years.    My wife did remark that she never once remembered me not liking my job there, and when i was there, I had no intention of ever leaving.   

TBH that seems like a no-brainer.  And it's not a permanent decision.  If you get there and decide you're still unhappy you can evaluate option 1 again.  I wouldn't have any qualms about returning to a company that laid me off if it was a numbers decision and they're asking me to come back into a higher role.

Expatriate

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 40
Re: Return to a company that laid you off? Other career options as PM??
« Reply #6 on: August 21, 2015, 10:04:18 AM »
Your current job sucks the life out of you and you can get another job, at a previous firm that you remembered to like, with less stress and a bit more pay? That'd be a done deal to me. I wouldn't care less about having been laid off.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

AZDude

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1298
Re: Return to a company that laid you off? Other career options as PM??
« Reply #7 on: August 21, 2015, 10:10:38 AM »
The reason why you left should not matter unless it was something personal... This is a business decision. Fewer hours, less stress, more money. Why are you waffling?

fuzzed

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 66
  • Location: SW Ontario Canada
Re: Return to a company that laid you off? Other career options as PM??
« Reply #8 on: August 21, 2015, 12:15:05 PM »
Thank you all for your responses, the only hesitation point was vacation, I currently have 4 weeks, they were only able to officially offer 3 weeks.   I just had a second interview per se, and they were able to figure out a way to give me 4 weeks.  So that has been resolved.

I appreciate the "to the point" responses, it is one of those you can't see the forest for the trees kind of things.   When you see it through others eyes, yes, it seems odd to be waffling.   It is a business decision, less stress, more life balance.

Thanks again for the much needed push.

swashbucklinstache

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 215
  • Location: Midwest U.S.
Re: Return to a company that laid you off? Other career options as PM??
« Reply #9 on: August 21, 2015, 07:10:08 PM »
One other thing to think about might be moving to a PM role in a company that is not straight tech. There are plenty of companies that might have a number of people doing software things as a key core of their business but which are not "tech" companies. That is, their main output is not necessarily tech but 85% of the work to get there is. In the US at least, I know several people who went from IT roles at big tech companies you'd know to big defense contracting or finance or research companies (pharma). The ones I know the details of, those people got paiiiiid for their "hardcore" IT skills and background and now work fewer hours with less stress.

Heckler

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1346
Re: Return to a company that laid you off? Other career options as PM??
« Reply #10 on: August 21, 2015, 11:24:39 PM »
I returned to a company that laid me off five years earlier.  I negotiated keeping my level of seniority re: vacation time in particular. Similar high tech industry of never knowing when the pink slip comes.  Negotiation is your friend, especially if they really want you!

Expatriate

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 40
Re: Return to a company that laid you off? Other career options as PM??
« Reply #11 on: August 22, 2015, 02:48:20 AM »
While not schooled in a 'proper' tech company, I do have a lifelong interest in IT and quite some years of programming experience at a decent level.

I realize that the recognition (in both aspects :-) I receive for my systems-related PM work in Finance is way beyond what I'd get if I were to work in a pure tech company. And it comes relatively easy to me, so in fact little overtime and stress.

It's a great position to be in. Just make sure you keep learning to improve your value and to avoid slacking. If you go into Finance, consider e.g. getting business certifications like CFA.

fuzzed

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 66
  • Location: SW Ontario Canada
Re: Return to a company that laid you off? Other career options as PM??
« Reply #12 on: August 23, 2015, 01:48:17 PM »
Just make sure you keep learning to improve your value and to avoid slacking.

Great advice. Thank you.