EVERY once in a while, you may do something you said you would not do: return to an ex-boyfriend/girlfriend, dive in the deep end of a swimming pool, or maybe eat frog legs.
But for some, doing something they said they would not do falls into the realm of returning to an employer after leaving many years ago.
If you have thought about returning to a former employer, it's definitely not the end of the world. In fact, it could be the beginning of a new one. So if you are serious about boomeranging back to a former workplace, here are some tips to consider before doing so.
1. Remember the contributions you made
The thought of returning to a company that you once worked for can be exciting and intimidating at the same time. On one hand, you may be excited about the prospect of returning to an environment that was once very familiar to you. But on the other, you may be worried about what employees and managers thought about you leaving the company in the first place. You may also be thinking about how the environment you once knew so well may have changed since you left.
A good way to feel more comfortable is by thinking of the contributions you made while there.
If you left the company on good terms, then it is likely that the company will be more than willing to welcome a knowledgeable and reliable employee back with open arms - even if you're now in a different position.
They are likely to have more faith in your abilities than a stranger's, which actually puts you in a better position than most others vying for the same position. So if you are a little nervous, remind yourself of these contributions to help build your confidence.
2. Sell your knowledge of the company's culture
Another area of comfort when looking to return to a previous employer is knowledge of the company's culture, mission, and what it values.
This is important as every company can be vastly different, and it takes time to get comfortable in a new one. Because you already understand how the company works, and what is expected of all employees, you have a better shot of beating your competition.
As for selling this point to the company, you can do it both in your cover letter and interview. If you are facing a recruiter who has entered the company since you left, selling your knowledge will be especially important.
Think about it; unless you were a dynamo, the recruiter will not likely be familiar with what you contributed. But you can explain that catching up will be like riding a bike. Essentially, all you will need to do is learn new skills and begin to apply them.
Returning to a former employer can definitely bring with it great rewards. If you decide to return, take it as a positive experience. By rekindling old friendships and building new ones, you can make the return a great experience for everyone involved.