my manager wants me to lie to my new coworker

A reader writes:

Last week, I gave my two weeks’ notice to my company. At the same time as I gave my resignation, they were preparing to bring a new hire into our department. I realize that my resignation might be badly timed for them, but I’ve held firm even when presented with a counter-offer.

The new guy started today, and my boss has told me to speak to him as if I wasn’t leaving. My last day is Friday, and apparently they haven’t told him I won’t be there next week! What makes this worse is that the company was planning for the two of us to work fairly closely. I feel bad for this guy, because this company has a fairly consistent pattern of dishonesty. Apparently he was told he’d be working closely with me and they chose to let him keep believing it even when they knew I was out the door. Now I’m supposed to keep my mouth shut while they “get their story right.”

I’m not willing to lie to a coworker, and I’m sure not going to lie for this company, but I’m not sure it’s my place to tell him I won’t be around next week. Any thoughts?

I answer this question — and four others — over at Inc. today, where I’m revisiting letters that have been buried in the archives here from years ago (and sometimes updating/expanding my answers to them). You can read it here.

Other questions I’m answering there today include:

  • Can I ask for a raise at my 90-day review?
  • Convincing a company to let me work long-distance
  • Should I explain that I took six months off due to stress?
  • Is my company cheating me out of overtime pay?

{ 106 comments… read them below }

  1. k.k*

    I’d be pretty peeved if I showed up to work my second week and the person I was supposed to work closely with was gone. There’s a big difference between accepting a job with the understanding that you’ll have someone there to show you the ropes and lean on, versus starting off in chaos.

    1. Falling Diphthong*

      I am choosing to believe that they plan to go with denial. Next Monday the newbie will ask where she is, and management will widen their eyes and say, “Arya? Who? Doesn’t ring a bell.”

      1. The Vulture*

        Yeah, the old ghost story gambit. “Who? but…we haven’t had anyone in that position for 20 years!”

      2. Greg*

        Or, “She just stepped out. She should be here any minute … oh, turns out she had to go home sick … she was just here a second ago, you didn’t see her?”

        I figure you could stretch that out for at least another week.

    2. Mockingjay*

      My second job out of college, on my first day, the person I was to be working with quit on the spot and walked out.

      Not a good sign of things to come. I suffered two long years before I got a transfer to another department. Then I spent 6 months being pulled back to help out at old department because they couldn’t get anyone to work there. My new department finally put their foot down and told old dept. that they couldn’t borrow me anymore.

  2. nnn*

    Warning to anyone reading from work: there’s a loud autoplay video ad on that page, with no pause or mute button

  3. Red Reader*

    Once upon a time, many many years ago, I came into an organization as a temp who’s assignment was to spend six months helping a dude with a particular project. At the end of the day on my first Friday, the dude went into our manager’s office to ask if he could take the next session a particular training that was offered every other week. She told him no, she needed him to finish my training, but he could take it the following time. He threw up his hands and quit. (This was apparently the third time he’d done, and the union contract required them to allow him to rescind a resignation once, and they’d done the second time as well.) He came back Monday morning and asked to rescind his resignation again, and grand-boss was like “No. We are not putting up with this again.”

    And that was how I got hired into his job and found myself with a career in medical finance and administration. :)

    1. Bryce*

      My first summer internship, my mentor had a couple of weeks to introduce me to the programming language (S+ if I recall, some statistical stuff) and give an overall idea of the task, then had to take a semi-emergency sabbatical for six weeks. It actually worked pretty well, he’d given me a good idea of what we were working towards (as opposed to a single task with no idea where to go from there) so I had things to play around with. The main downside was a lack of hard numbers to test or confirmation that the stuff I was putting out was in a form they could use. Apparently everything was great last I heard. Would’ve been a trainwreck with a different intern or mentor, though.

  4. JD*

    I am having a difficult time even understanding why they would lie to this guy. What is the benefit? It baffles me. Seems quite silly.

      1. JD*

        Plus it benefits him to know because he might think to ask questions knowing that the week is his last chance whereas perhaps he would hold off otherwise as he might not think of something until a bit later but he will be thinking more about these questions knowing she will be gone.

      2. Magenta Sky*

        I suspect it’s more a matter if they want the letter writer to lie *about* leaving so the manager can lie about *why* he left – after he’s not longer there to set the record straight.

        “Yeah, we fired him, so you’d better walk the straight and narrow. Now get me my coffee!”

        That, or the manager is dumb enough to believe the new hire won’t notice his mentor is gone. Had to decide which is more likely.

    1. Mephyle*

      Short-sighted thinking? They don’t want to make him feel he’s going to be left in the lurch when OP leaves.
      Yet they don’t care about actually leaving him trainer-less AND feeling betrayed when OP is gone, because that’s in the future.

      1. Agatha_31*

        I’ve had bosses like this. If they wrote a *true* summary of their company philosophy I think it’d say something like “we have no idea how to run a business so instead of figuring that out let’s just start one and then just keep kicking problems down the road until they either blow up or become irrelevant. You know, like our company! OH, and also, let’s blame our employees for all the bad stuff. The high turnover will mask our incompetence with plausible deniability for increasingly short periods of time as our customer base gets wise to the fact that we ALWAYS seem to have the same excuse and never fix it!”

        But you can’t fit all that on a company t-shirt so they just shorten it down to something like “teamwork!”

    2. Robbie*

      The only thing I could think of is that he was hired with promises of extensive training, and the boss was worried he would quit if he learned about the truth sooner. Still, it is a guaranteed way to set someone up for resentment and/or failure.

      1. EddieSherbert*

        Also, if they’re worried he MIGHT quit knowing OP is leaving, then you think they’d figure out that he will MOST LIKELY quit finding out OP already left and no one told him!

    3. Cordelia Vorkosigan*

      Maybe they were afraid he wouldn’t take the job if he knew? But you’d think he’d be just as likely to quit on Monday if he’s only been there a week, so I don’t think lying is much of a help to them. It’s weird.

    4. Artemesia*

      They get to blame the OP who ‘just up and quit’ rather than owning up to their own poor planning or lack of support for Newguy. Leaving, I’d insist on sitting down with the guy to work out a strategy for providing the best possible transition in that week.

      1. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock*

        Or they get to say they fired OP. Both approaches are pretty messed up.

      2. Statler von Waldorf*

        Yeah, this is my thought too. It’s easier to throw the letter writer under the bus once he is no longer there. People who use lies to solve problems tend to do so repeatedly.

    5. Hangry*

      Perhaps they don’t want new guy to ask OP why she’s leaving. Because it sounds like there are plenty of good reasons.

      1. Amy*

        This was my thought. Of course New Guy will find out OP is leaving–when OP is gone, if nothing else. But if OP and New Guy never actually discuss it, new guy will never hear whatever OP might have to say about the job/company. It sounds like the company fears OP might have reason to say something that would scare New Guy off.

    6. paul*

      I can understand (even if i don’t like) deception when there’s a gain to be had. It’s crappy but it can make an amoral sort of sense. This though? huh?

      1. JD*

        I always say this. Lying when there is a obvious negative consequence if one tells the truth, while not right, can make some sense. This makes no sense to me. Either way they will have to find someone else to train him so why not get that in place ahead of time. If he was promised whatever amount of training I doubt he would blow his lid if someone else ended up doing the training.

    7. Anon Accountant*

      Probably because if this guy knew the truth he’d decide he didn’t want the job. And the company really wants him to work for them. It’s a crappy thing to do to a new hire.

      My employer pulls crappy stuff like this. To get 3 separate new hires they lied about benefits offered, the work and types of accounts they’d be working on.

      It’s because they know if told the truth good candidates would back out. Well it’s backfired because several good recent hires quit.

      1. Anonymous and Loving It*

        I had an employer pull this on me. Lied about the job in the job ad, lied about the job during the interview.

        I realized they’d lied my first day on the job. I told them I was quitting, and they were shocked, shocked that I was leaving! The woman who was my immediate supervisor came to my office in tears, asking why and asking what she could do differently when she tried to fill the position after I left.

        I didn’t laugh in her face, although I had to stifle the urge. “Try telling the truth next time,” I told her. She looked stunned. I just stood up, grabbed my purse, and left the office and the building. I had no trouble finding another job that paid more than that one and didn’t include working for clueless liars.

        I got the impression that this group thought once they had you in the door, you were their prisoner. It was so strange. Yes, folks, I have options. And one of them is leaving. Indentured servitude went out of style a few centuries ago.

        1. SusanIvanova*

          Thinking that they own you is common – when people were leaving in droves from UnfortunateMerger, we asked upper management if they had any plans to deal with it. “Only you can protect your job” was the answer, and another dozen resumes went out that day.

      2. I See Real People*

        I was told by my boss in the interview for my current position that the person who was leaving said position was getting “promoted”. Not true. She has since told me it was agreed that they would part ways because it ‘wasn’t working out’, and she could go to another department if she told me/other people interviewing for this job that she was being promoted.

    8. Kathleen Adams*

      It sounds dithery to me. They haven’t figured out how they’re going to cope, and so…they just aren’t going to cope until they have to.

    9. Lil Fidget*

      I assume they think it’d be demoralizing for to get into this with a departing employee, OR – slight chance – they are working on their solution and just don’t want OP to blab before they have the answer. Like, “maybe Jane can take over for OP? But she’s out until Wednesday, so we can’t confirm – let’s not talk to New Guy about this until we have a plan, it will only create panic.

    10. McWhadden*

      They probably don’t want him to ask questions about how messed up the company is. And then when the OP doesn’t show up on Monday they’ll lie and say he up and quit with no warning. Thus discrediting the OP and making it seem like he’s the one with the issue (crazy, unreliable, etc.) Not the company.

  5. AK*

    #2 better get that promise of a promotion in writing in case whoever promised it ‘forgets’ or isn’t around later in the year. Maybe in the review bring up the fact that your job responsibilities seem to have started changing from what you were originally hired to do, and while you’re happy with it you’d also like to know if there are clear objectives you should be meeting in order to get to that position. That way you’ve got a better handle on what their expectations are, and later in the year have more information behind you to bring it up in case no one’s said anything about it.

  6. Product person*

    #2: “In fact, even though I was hired for a non-supervisory position, I am fully in charge of training new hires. I have also been verbally promised a promotion within the year.”

    Since when being fully in charge of training new hires equate with having a supervisory position? In many of my individual contributor roles, I was also fully in charge of training new people, but it never meant I had a supervisory role. In my long career, training was never provided by my supervisor or manager, so I don’t even understand using this as evidence that you are acting on a supervisory level…

      1. EddieSherbert*


        I work at a software company, and do a lot of the training for new support staff even though I’m technically not on that team (…because I create the training materials for customers), and I’ve never seen myself as a supervisor.

    1. Turquoisecow*

      Yeah, I did a lot of training and no formal supervising (although I was higher than the new hires, I wasn’t their boss).

      I’m also kind of skeptical that someone who hasn’t even been with the company for 90 days would be “fully in charge” of training new hires. It doesn’t seem like she has much more company experience than brand-new people?

      1. Emi.*

        It probably depends on what you’re training them in. It might just be Hi, Here’s SPSS or something like that.

      2. Doreen*

        There is a situation where the trainer is also the supervisor – but it involves full-time training over a period of weeks or months rather than on the job training. I’ve had a few jobs with that sort of training, and in my experience a person who was hired three months ago would not be the person “fully in charge” of the training. That person might provide some of the training but would also be teamed with someone more experienced who was actually “in charge” of that group.

    2. SarahKay*

      Yes, I didn’t think that being in charge of training is equivalent to a supervisory position either. Unless OP 2 means they are supervising a team of trainers, maybe?

  7. Blue Anne*

    I would place a solid bet on the boss in #1 planning to tell the poor guy that you quit without notice, OP.

    I was the leaving colleague in this situation a while ago. I spoke to my former colleagues later and apparently my absence was “unexplained” for a few days, and my bosses then told them that I’d quit without notice, and heavily implied that I’d had a mental breakdown.

    1. Anon Accountant*


      And whoa to your bosses implying you had a mental breakdown. That’s just disturbing behavior.

      1. Blue Anne*

        It was totally in their pattern, which was why I quit as soon as I’d had a promising interview.

        None of my colleagues believed the story.

    2. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock*

      My bosses at ToxicJob did a variation of this. I gave proper notice, wrapped everything up, had had transition conversations, and they new it was likely I would quit months before I did. They told my coworkers I moved because I wanted to work in a different part of the State (very much not the reason, especially because I didn’t move). Imagine those coworkers’ surprise when they saw me at an industry conference and learned I’d never moved and was (physically) working in the same region as before.

      These kinds of lies seem 100% designed to cover up discontent, hide information sharing between employees, and control the narrative about a person’s leaving.

      1. Windchime*

        I had a similar thing happen. I was in a toxic workplace where people going out on FMLA leave for extreme mental stress was common. I found a new job and gave my notice, and the next day management called me into HR and told me that I wasn’t going to be allowed to work my notice. So no goodbye to colleagues, just a note to the network people to cut off my access like they do when people get fired. It was basically a “You can’t quit; we fire you!” situation. Fortunately, I suspected they might do this so immediately after I gave my notice, I hit send on an email to all the co-workers I cared about telling them that I was resigning. It still hurt, though.

  8. LW*

    I had to do a double-take… this was my letter from about three years ago!
    Wish I had a great update to share. They eventually did come clean and tell him I was leaving. He took it surprisingly well, but I get the sense this was his first position out of college. They managed to fill my position surprisingly quick. I don’t want to brag, but it was kind of purple-squirrelish, which i think is why they made me the counter-offer in the first place.
    Anyway, two years later the whole team was laid off. I still keep in touch with my manager, and despite that incident, I do think highly of him. He was inexperienced, younger than me, in fact, and mortally afraid of our lunatic owner (who was the real reason I left). He really wasn’t happy about the whole layoff situation, but they kept him on and I get the sense he’s too well-paid to leave.
    As for me, two job hops later I’m finally in a professional environment where I’m respected and compensated fairly. All’s well that ends well, I guess.

    1. Cyberspace Dreamer*

      What I appreciate about your letter and follow up is that situations like this have a lot of moving parts. When dealing with untenable situations it is very easy and convenient to paint an organization with a broad brush. Blurring the lines between the true source of culture toxicity and those wh0 may simply be caught in the middle. (Like middle management often is)

      Maintaining those relationships and understanding the challenges others are dealing with is an important part of coping with those unfortunate situations.

      Kudos on your continued ascent!!

  9. Anononon*

    When I left my last job, my boss was super nervous about what I would say to the new hire (her first week was my last week) because he knew it wouldn’t be good. Looking back, I should have said more to her/warned her as it was a terrible place. He wound up firing her about half a year later because she was highly capable and he felt threatened.

  10. Collarbone High*

    I’m racking my brain trying to think of an occasion where “we need to get our story right” would be a reasonable thing to say in the workplace and … I got nothing.

    1. paul*

      anytime you’re talking to the media. It isn’t even about covering stuff up; it’s about making sure you don’t breach any confidentiality or foul up any audits or investigations. It’s also about making sure you’re sticking to the issue at hand and not blowing up another kerfluffle for talking heads.

      1. Breda*

        Related: if two people say two different things that are both true-but-incomplete, it can read (whether to media or just to a customer) like one or both are lying.

    2. Cassandra*

      “There’s been a security breach.” Ask Equifax why to have the story straight beforehand.

  11. Spcepickle*

    I also do timesheets every two weeks and I work 9s. So my weeks are 45 hours and 35 hours with every other Friday off (this is my preferred schedule). My employer simply says that my work week ends 4 hours after my shift starts on Friday (so on paper I work 40 hours each week).

    1. beanie beans*

      Me too! I get the intent (not to take advantage of employees) but I really like the flexibility of working 80 hours in two weeks however I make it work (within reason).

    2. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock*

      Are you hourly, non-exempt? Because if not, your employer is committing wage theft (in addition to fraud).

      1. Safetykats*

        I would read your state law carefully. In WA the code requires OT pay for hours in excess of 40 in a “seven-day work week,” but does not mandate how the work week is defined. Defining the work week to run from noon on Friday to noon on Friday in order to allow a 35/45 (9/80) schedule (everybother Friday off) is pretty common, and has been upheld as legal. Maybe the CA law is more specific as to definition of the work week, but if not the legality really does depend on how the work week is defined.

        1. Someone else*

          I believe California not only says OT is calculated per day, ie more than 8 hours on any given day = OT, but also that more than 40 in a 7 day period is OT. The noon to noon thing might get around the 40/7 but the 8/day part would mean working 6 days a week in the 45.

        2. Princess Consuela Banana Hammock*

          I think I misread the original post as saying that Spcepickle’s employer shifts the week calculation (as opposed to setting the work week to begin/end on the same day with a 4-hour off period), which of course is not permitted under the FLSA. But that’s not what Spcepickle wrote; I just didn’t read it carefully enough. Apologies to all who I may have scared with my misreading.

          California has a more aggressive OT rule, as Someone else describes below. It calculates your hours by day and by 7-day work period, so having one work week end 4 hours before the next would not help an employer get out of paying OT. But I had the FLSA in mind when I was reading the description, not state law. I just read it incorrectly :)

    3. nonegiven*

      Yes. That’s how my husband’s work does it. I was curious so I asked, I was afraid they’d get into trouble and then lose the one weekday off every other week. He really likes having that extra day off. Their week is Friday noon to Friday noon. 9 hours Monday through Thursday, 8 hours every other Friday. Hourly employees, pay period is a month, but they can take up to half their net on the 15th.

      If anyone wants to work 8 hour days, 5 days a week, they can. All of them working 9 hour days with every other Friday off, love it. On the weeks everyone has Friday off, like Black Friday, everyone works 8s, and they pick up where they left off the next week.

      I’m not sure how they worked it out the time DH wanted to switch weeks, it was after only a few weeks of starting to do the 9s. There was something they didn’t have coverage for on his Friday off so he wanted to switch because everyone covering that had the same Friday off.

  12. rosiebyanyothername*

    I kind of ran into a similar situation, one member of my team (a peer, not my supervisor) put in her notice right before I started but I didn’t hear about it until later, literally the week she was leaving. Everything worked out, but it was kind of stressful to start a new job in an understaffed department when it had been fully staffed during the application/interview period.

  13. A person*

    They do this crap where I work all the time. I’ve never seen a professional office with this much turn over and secrecy surrounding personnel departures. I’ll be gone too as soon as I have a better job.

    One of my colleagues that was supposed to be working closely with me on a project recently resigned and was told not to tell anyone. I found out because she started copying me on all her emails to management about closing out her travel, cancelling training, final tasks, etc.- even one about being told not to tell anyone!

    I hope she’s in a better workplace now.

  14. Sarah*

    For OP5, the only detail here is that it can be any 7-day period (not necessarily Sunday-Saturday or whatever). If measuring the “week” differently (say Tuesday-Monday or whatever) would not cause you to go over 40 hours within each period, that is legal. So I would double check this before confronting your boss about it, since it’s obviously not the most intuitive way to think about your hours in most M-F-style jobs.

    1. Retail Lifer*

      Our workweek here is a bizarre Thursday-Wednesday and we’re open seven days a week. That means you could easily work eight days in a row but not have any overtime.

  15. Mr. Rogers*

    My bf worked at a company before where they were generous with approving overtime, but calculated the pay periods in a weird way so that the “week” started halfway through one week. That way a pay period would be, say, Wednesday-Friday of week 1, Monday-Friday of week 2, and Mon-Tues of week 3. This was all so that you could basically only get overtime pay for that middle week, and on the half weeks you’d just get regular pay bc you weren’t passing “40 hours per week”. I have no idea how they got away with that, but needless to say there were other issues there as well.

    1. anyone out there but me*

      That is sooooooooooooo illegal. They got away with it because no one reported them to the state employment commission. From my understanding, it can still be reported and if the company is found in the wrong, they will have to pay backpay…..

  16. Goya*

    *Sigh* Wish I had advice for OP5, but we’re struggling just to get paid for the hours worked in my company, forget about over-time. Seems like there is always a “loop-hole” that employers love to take advantage of. While some may love the “flexibility” aspect, some would much rather have the extra pay.

  17. Coco*

    #5, this EXACT situation happened to me this year. My employer owed many hours of overtime for many employees because of a 2-week “flexing” policy just as you describe. The policy was changed the week I emailed my boss with this language:

    “My understanding is that employees must be paid overtime for any hours worked over 40 in a workweek regardless of how that fits into the 2-week pay period. (link to state labor law explanation) I hope we can revisit the current policy because it doesn’t seem in alignment with the law. I’m worried that we may owe wages for any time someone flexed their hours to avoid overtime, and we could face a wage claim. My understanding may be wrong and I may be missing some important context, but this does seem concerning enough that I hope we can address it soon.”

      1. The Supreme Troll*

        Definitely true – very well stated. But I hope that Coco and the OP who wrote the last letter are successful in also getting back pay in those times that they were underpaid when they did work more than 40 hours in a week.

        I might be wrong, but in the case of the OP who wrote in the last letter, I feel that her company was deliberately trying to take shortcuts in avoiding time-and-a-half pay.

        1. Coco*

          Actually I was not one of the people who had owed wages since I was part-time at the time and never worked over 40 hours or even close. I would have requested those wages from my employer if it had applied to me. None of my full-time coworkers asked for their owed wages unfortunately. There is a culture of being harmonious and go-with-the-flow even at great personal cost.

    1. Coco*

      You must have worked at some seriously dysfunctional places! That language would go over fine where I work.

      1. Sunshine on a cloudy day*

        It really depends on the level of dysfunction of the place…

        My first job after school was at a startup that misclassified me as an Independent Contractor. I knew it wasn’t right and they knew it wasn’t right (I overheard my boss saying to the owner that “sunshine could get us in a lot of trouble” while talking about bringing another person on as an independent contractor). I didn’t speak up beacuse I was just glad to have any sort of income while in the height of the recession as a new grad. Finally after two years I did approach my (new) boss about being converted to a full-time employee. I said something along the lines of “and I’m not even sure my responsibilities are appropriate for an independent contractor role” – literally just one line, saying that. Boss said they would speak to owner. I was laid off (due to me “role being eliminated”) exactly one week later.

        I hope this employer’s combo of ballsyness/unethical behavior is rare, but putting it out there as some sort of possibility (however low the liklihood).

        BTW: things did all work out, eventually. After “laying me off” they didn’t get around to cancelling my email access for 72 hours, which gave me the chance to forward all of my work emails to a gmail account. I had several emails from the owner specifically discussing my work responsibilities. I filed for unemployment and won the case for it (though that took almost two months before any funds were released to me and I was in a really precarious financial situation). My unemployment case triggered an audit (they had a bunch of other people classified as independent contractors) and now the company no longer exists.

        1. Sunshine on a cloudy day*

          Oops – I thought this was in regards to the Over Time letter (re: using neutral, “helpful” language to bring that sort of situation up with an employer). This isn’t really applicable to #1.

    2. Observer*

      If the OP is in a really tight financial position, that’s an issue. But since they’ve put in their 2 weeks, they may not care all that much.

  18. A person*

    I don’t think it’s likely that just making the suggestion would get someone walked out.

    However, my former colleague who copied me on a bunch of her closeout emails after being instructed not to tell anyone anything actually did vanish a couple of days earlier than I expected. Who knows if it’s related though.

  19. stitchinthyme*

    Years ago, my husband had a job interview on a Thursday. They offered him the job that same day and asked him to start the very next day, Friday. Since he didn’t have a job at the time (so no need to give notice), he did…and that’s when he found out that the nice guy who interviewed him, and whom he was looking forward to working with, was leaving, that this was his last day, and that my husband had to learn his entire job in that one day in order to replace him.

    It just got worse from there. I think my husband lasted a few months before running for the hills.

    1. AvonLady Barksdale*

      The day before I unexpectedly left my last company, they offered a peer position to a woman who I really liked. I thought she was great and we would get along really well. I also promised to walk her through her first projects because no one had done that for me. She accepted, and that afternoon I was gone (I didn’t expect to quit, it just kind of happened). I can’t even imagine what it was like for her when she showed up on her first day. I know she struggled in the position and now, a year later, she’s also gone. So not quite the same situation as your husband’s, but I know she would have looked at the job differently if I hadn’t made that promise or if I’d known I was leaving.

  20. Workfromhome*

    My former company did stupid stuff like this. I used to joke that the only way to know if someone left (I worked remotely) was when I sent an email and it bounced back due to an invalid address. When I left I gave my boss 2 week notice. I said I would allow them to notify clients and he said he would discuss with the team ASAP. The next week I called one of my team members to train him on something before I left. He was confused as to why. When I explained he would need to know this when I left he replied. What you are leaving? A few days before I left customers called me to book meetings for the next week. obviously they were not told. There were large customers who I ran into months after that were a bit upset with me because I wasn’t getting back to them or they “couldn’t get a hold of me” they were shocked and embarrassed when I told them I left months ago. It makers little sense to lie when you know it will eventually be revealed as such.
    You are leaving this job. I’d probably value my own integrity and reputation more than their expectation that you will do as your told (to lie). I mean if you do tell him you are leaving against their wishes what are they gonna you?

  21. AMPG*

    I completely understand the reasoning behind the wage law in #5 and how it protects workers, but at an old company of mine we did the same type of “flexing” with our interns (who were hourly non-exempt) to help them. Temporary hires weren’t eligible for PTO, so if an intern needed to be out for anything less than a full day, we’d often let them make up the time within the same pay period. I realize we could’ve insisted they make up any time within the same week (and we encouraged that), but giving them the full two weeks helped them out.

    1. Ask a Manager* Post author

      Yeah, one of the weird things about overtime law is that sometimes it restricts employees from doing things they want to do and which would be in their best interests (like in your example). It’s inflexible in order to avoid situations where employers pressure employees into agreeing to arrangements they don’t want, but the trade-off is that it can be too rigid in some situations.

  22. Hyperbolic yarn*

    I’m in a position similar to #2 with the added twists of:
    1. The job did not give nearly as much as I requested given the gap in salary expectations. Instead I was told that after working and proving myself they may consider a “market adjustment.”
    2. My 90 day review will be occurring at the same time as annual reviews.

    My understanding is that raises are typically discussed during the annual review, which makes me more hesitant to not discuss a raise at my review meeting. Any thoughts on how to walk the line between feedback and salary?

  23. Bryce*

    Ya know, I used to work a 9/80 (every other Friday off) 15 years ago, and I honestly can’t recall if there were overtime arrangements. The extra weekend days were nice, but it wound up getting cancelled because of scheduling issues/abuse; it was staggered half and half for who got which weeks off, but somehow 75% of the place was empty every Friday, and on top of that it was supposed to be split in each division so somebody was there to have some sort of presence, but in most of the divisions you couldn’t get anything done with half the team gone so it was a wasted day (which is why some folks just wouldn’t show up leading to the first issue). We managed well enough anyway, but the story I heard was that one Friday some senator or other bigwig was getting a tour, and was proudly shown a star division that turned out to be an empty room because they’d all gone onto the same schedule to be able to work. Next Monday everyone was told it was back to a 5/40 schedule.

  24. mf*

    My former boss wouldn’t let me tell people outside of my immediate department that was leaving because “it would make the department look bad.”

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