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Old 06-27-2012, 09:13 AM   #21
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Update...

Well I spoke to the VP who is heading up the project and I tried to (politely) turn down the opportunity. At which point I was asked by him to take a little time to think it over.

I told him that I would... and I suggested that I would get back to him by the end of the week.

I wish I could think of someone else to recommend... but I'm drawing a blank. They run such a lean operation that everyone else has either left or is currently overworked (except for management, that is).

My mind hasn't really changed... but I'll have lunch with an unbiased director within the company today - just to talk it over with them & hear their opinion.

Thanks for everyone's input!
Your mind hasn't changed, so you will meet again to talk it over. This sounds more like a negotiation than a refusal. Are you sure you don't want to go back?
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Old 06-27-2012, 09:24 AM   #22
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If retirement is blissful why are you considering working?
+1 (it does not compute ).

Why give up a goal/achievement of ER just to jump back into the fire?

Of course, if you are/were both financially/emotionally not ready for retirement, than that's another story.

As for me (5 years in retirement thus far), I would rather give up a kidney than go back to the grind, regardless of the promises made (of course, I'm financially/emotionally "set" so it dosen't matter in my case).
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Old 06-27-2012, 09:25 AM   #23
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Also, in addition to other aspects of the engagement, how can you think about it if you do not know what they are willing to pay you
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Old 06-27-2012, 09:46 AM   #24
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I would think of it from the perspective that you are holding all the cards and you are able to negotiate an ideal situation. What was the best thing about your position you liked? For example, did you enjoy doing negotiations? Did you enjoy doing something like design? It is not unreasonable to outline a role which may be intellectually stimulating, has hours on your terms and you are paid a very fair rate. You obviously have a skill they desire and are willing to pay for. If you don't need the job, consider what you would do without the things you disliked. If you can't come up with a role you want then at that point the answer is certainly no.
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Old 06-27-2012, 10:00 AM   #25
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Maybe you could negotiate working from home predominately and just going to the brick and mortar area - say once a week to discuss what you did this week and what is on the agenda for next week - that is what I have done with many of the part time projects that I have picked up here and there...

And yes, many of them were with areas that I was not particularly fond of, but I knew they needed my expertise to complete the project so I bit the bullet (or my frustrations) so to speak...
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Old 06-27-2012, 02:14 PM   #26
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Your mind hasn't changed, so you will meet again to talk it over. This sounds more like a negotiation than a refusal. Are you sure you don't want to go back?
I must not have been clear... my lunch date was with a friend (a Director in the Co.) who happens to know the VP. I had planned on lunch with her anyway as I still keep in touch with a select group of friends from the office.

Anyway, during lunch, we both agreed that there are some aspects of the project that "might" be fun and interesting... but that I wouldn't be able to pick and choose to do only those portions that I would enjoy. Also, she confirmed my suspicion that the VP I would report to is fickle as a teenage girl. Fully capable of turning on you without justification or warning. (We both have seen this happen.)

In my earlier conversation with the VP I was told that I could work from home... but I know that this was an empty offer, from a removed Sr. manager who doesn't understand the job required. While there would be some things I could do from a computer at home... realistically, I would need to be both in the office and probably do some traveling.

It was also interesting to hear (from my friend) that the company is running so lean that several departments are stressed with added workload. People walking around unhappy, dazed, tired and generally miserable. Unable to even take a vacation.

All told, I remain convinced that my decision to turn this down was/is correct. The VP may not have wanted to hear my refusal yesterday... but come Friday, I'll make it most forceful.

Thanks again for everyone's input. I'm not sure why I care so much about making these guys happy & not wanting to "burn bridges"... I suppose after years of under-appreciation, the slightest whiff of gratitude smells like a rose garden.

I need to see this for what it is. They are in a tough spot and need help. I just happen to be someone they can use.
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Old 06-27-2012, 06:58 PM   #27
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I would probably do this, even if I didn't need the money. I would be able to "go home again", earn some scratch, and perhaps make more extensive donations to charitable causes I support.
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Old 06-27-2012, 08:46 PM   #28
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I did this. My wife was opposed to traveling, so I wasn't going anywhere.

It was nice to see some old friends and discover I'm still good at some stuff. My former employer was fine with an hourly rate. That made a difference to me (less pressure).

My primary comment is that we explicitly set it up as part time. I said I was retired and didn't want to go back to setting an alarm, and I wanted to have time to hit the health club, and whatever ... every day. I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have liked going back to a full time job.

Oh, and they paid me noticeably more on an hourly basis than I made when I was a regular employee. That was the clincher for me.
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Old 06-27-2012, 09:07 PM   #29
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I've had several of these "I could SO do that job" offers in retirement, and I've seen other retirees go through the same experience. I have yet to see anyone who feels that the dissatisfiers are more than compensated by the fulfilling employment ([/sarcasm]) or the money. Those who took the jobs did so to satisfy their "What if?" or ""My ol' team needs my help again" or even to assuage their "survivor retiree guilt".

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Originally Posted by Seeking Hobbes View Post
Thanks again for everyone's input. I'm not sure why I care so much about making these guys happy & not wanting to "burn bridges"... I suppose after years of under-appreciation, the slightest whiff of gratitude smells like a rose garden.
It's always tremendously ego-enhancing to have your true value validated. It's even better when this flattering assessment comes from people who used to treat you like a "steaming pile of poo".

However you've already thought your way through this to the problems, and you're not willing to put up with the problems no matter how good the good stuff may be. Unless the money will make a huge difference to your lifestyle (or to someone you love) then you should run away fast.

I think it's entirely appropriate to tell the VP that this work would interfere too much with your other lifestyle plans (and your vacation schedule) and that money won't make a difference to your lifestyle. It's not necessary, but you could also mention that everyone you spoke to about this project seemed stressed, overworked, and undersupported-- and that you're not willing to return to that environment for any amount of money.

You'd have to wonder why the VP is working so hard to get you back instead of to go hire people who really really want the job for the money. Maybe it's because they can't find anyone who wants the job for the conditions they're offering, and they're looking for someone whose judgment could be clouded by their hazy rosy memories of how it used to be? I mean, really, is this VP's most important task this week to get you to come back to work instead of trying other ways to fix the problems?

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Originally Posted by Seeking Hobbes View Post
I need to see this for what it is. They are in a tough spot and need help. I just happen to be someone they can use.
They may be in a tough spot, but it appears to be self-imposed. And if they're going to use you then would that be as a "steaming pile of poo", or as a roll of toilet paper?
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Old 06-28-2012, 07:09 AM   #30
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You'd have to wonder why the VP is working so hard to get you back instead of to go hire people who really really want the job for the money.
They have always been an organization with "too many chiefs and too few indians."

The easiest way for the chiefs to make their profit numbers was to delay hiring additional staff (while pushing/monitoring/threatening) existing employees until near revolt. It's not a new story... it happens in many places. Just look at the current news... Record corporate profits -> high(ish) unemployment. A simplistic view, I know, but still relevant I believe.

My career has always been that of a subcontractor/vendor partner within organizations like this - 4 in total... which is one reason I was treated poorly (expendable, without a second thought). Still, I was able to observe how everyone was treated & I knew that being an "actual" employee wasn't any better & in some cases worse.

All told... I feel pretty good with my decision and haven't lost a moment of sleep thinking about it.
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Old 06-28-2012, 12:46 PM   #31
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I had a similar experience when I left and ER'd. I just said that I had more important priorities in my life than work and making money (and making the rich richer).

While I'm not sure if they accepted it because they respected my view or because the tone that I delivered the message made it clear that I wasn't about to change my mind they nonetheless accepted my decision and we were able to part friends.
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