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Career Conundrum - Ethics Question

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

First, I want to point out that I recognize that I am in a very good position relative to many in this economy. Having an option between two organizations is a luxury that most do not have. That said, I am 24 years old, holding a liberal arts degree from an undistinguished university and have worked for the last three years in a small (~50 employees) software firm doing project management. I say this to illustrate how lucky I am to have received these offers in the first place.

 

I have been job searching for some time with increasing urgency as the company at which I presently work appears to be floundering financially. I was contacted by a recruiting agency that is soliciting a position for a Fortune 50, Company A (think Wal-Mart). This position is for an internal consultant working in project management on a multi-year contract. I have gone through two rounds of interviews onsite and am intrigued by the work and thrilled by the potential to work for this organization. The interview process is very long, however, and I have been in it for several months.

 

During the interview process for Company A, I was contacted by a recruiting agency for Company B. Company B is also Fortune 50. The position would be to run two projects in a project management capacity for a ~6 month contract, with the possibility of extension. The offer was exploding, and upon hearing even worse news from my current employer, I took the offer. 

 

I received a final round invitation from Company A, and am planning to attend the interview. The interview will take place on Friday, I am scheduled to begin work at Company B the following Monday. The essence of my question is this: if I were to receive an offer from Company A, the company of my dreams, would I be making a big mistake by informing Company B that, after working there for only a few days, that I received an offer that I could not turn down and would therefore be putting my two weeks notice? My concerns here are for the health of my career, the potential concerns that Company A might have if they heard about what I did to Company B, etc. 

 

The money at the two places is the same. The level of responsibility is much higher at A, and the brand name is much, much larger, and the contract is for much longer, thereby giving me much more security. 

 

I feel miserable at the prospect of putting Company B in a bind, but it is difficult to see how I could forgive myself for foregoing such an opportunity. Any and all thoughts appreciated.

post #2 of 16
Despite Citizens United, I wonder if the decision makers at each of these companies would consider ethics if it came time to decide your fate. Corporations are not people; it's ok to be selfish.

Pick company A. Recruiters go though stuff like this all the time, they'll replace you quickly enough.

It might be better, however, if you quit before even starting. That's less disruptive. Don't tell them where you're going; just be vague, but direct that you decided to accept another offer.
post #3 of 16
Ojfc, Citizens United had nothing to do with corporations as people you goddamn moron. Corporate personhood is not mentioned once in the entire opinion.
post #4 of 16
Tough one, although as someone involved in 10+ years of corporate recruiting I can tell you that if situations were reversed, these Fortune 50 companies would very very rarely (IME never) renege on an offer to a candidate

Practically speaking there won't be any repercussion to you other than the shame you're currently feeling - unless the two companies are very connected/speak to each other on a mid manager level.

Ultimately you're probably better suited going for the job you will be the happiest at. This kind of thing happens fairly frequently and it sucks for companies, but institutional memory on project manager recruiting is quite short
post #5 of 16
Thread Starter 

Thanks very much for the replies! I did end up receiving an offer from A, and based on the feedback that I received here I accepted the offer, and surprisingly B was very gracious about it. What a relief! Thanks again.

post #6 of 16
Glad you got it sorted, but curious how two Fortune 50 companies could vary that much? I mean, I am indifferent between a 2B and 20B company.

Kroger vs Safeway? one is twice is large as the other...
post #7 of 16
Thread Starter 

I would liken it to the difference between doing IT at Microsoft and doing IT at corporate McDonald's, though the accuracy of the comparison is probably dubious.

 

Part of is a matter of perceived prestige, which for someone like me who is aiming at M7 MBAs in the not-too-distant future, isn't something to be discounted lightly.

post #8 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adorno View Post

I would liken it to the difference between doing IT at Microsoft and doing IT at corporate McDonald's, though the accuracy of the comparison is probably dubious.

Part of is a matter of perceived prestige, which for someone like me who is aiming at M7 MBAs in the not-too-distant future, isn't something to be discounted lightly.
fair enough, although I hope at this level people can dig into what individual responsibilities were more than a glossy name.
post #9 of 16

Don't worry, people do this quite often and you should pick the company you're most comfortable with.

post #10 of 16
Right, get your flat ass into corporate culture so you can commit suicide at 45. Moron.
post #11 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Harold falcon View Post

Right, get your flat ass into corporate culture so you can commit suicide at 45. Moron.

Do you usually average two idiotic posts per thread or is this a special effort?
post #12 of 16
It's a special effort. When morons post I feel it is my duty to respond.
post #13 of 16
Thread Starter 

I respect that sort of devotion to duty.

post #14 of 16
It's pretty mind-boggling to see someone named Adorno using a Zizek avatar ask these questions...
post #15 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuuma View Post

It's pretty mind-boggling to see someone named Adorno using a Zizek avatar ask these questions...

"Chomsky" was already taken.

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