Jaburg Wilk


No Reason to Burn a Bridge

Categories: Blog

Recently, a client told me about an employee who not only quit, but burned bridges with the company, its management, and many co-workers on his way out the door. This accomplished nothing. Even worse, before the bridge was burned to the ground, the company would have considered rehiring this person in the future.

People get mad, disagree, and are frustrated at times. This certainly can happen when someone is leaving a company. This is short-sighted. And this type of action can seriously affect your future opportunities. In business, acting on emotions can have a long-lasting effect.

You may never even know you lost a fantastic opportunity. It just won’t be there among your options because memories are long. It feels good to get things off of your chest, but what does it really accomplish? In business, most cities are like a small town. People remember being told off much longer than they do the person who sincerely and thoughtfully provided meaningful constructive criticism in an exit interview.

So, what do you do when you dislike the actions of your employer, co-workers, or even clients, or vendors? You have to chart the smoothest course you can. Sometimes it means not saying what’s on your mind in way you would like to, in other words, take the high road. I am not advocating that you ignore serious issues, but it’s better to act on thought rather than on emotion in these situations.

Reputation takes a lifetime to build and seconds to destroy. When you have opportunities to say something or take actions that will feel good in the moment, but will come back at you in the future, choose what you say and do wisely.

As always, this post and others can be found on my blog, Business Law Guy.

About the Author: Neal Bookspan is a partner at the Phoenix, Arizona law firm of Jaburg Wilk. He assists clients with business issues, commercial litigation, workouts, and bankruptcy litigation. Neal can be reached at 602.248.1000.