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Re: Letters of Reference Rosemary Burgos-Mira 23 Feb 2004 21:36 UTC

This is not new.  I worked in a business library in the late 80's, early 90's. In 1995, when I applied to my first university library position, I was told by my former supervisor, that she could not give me a reference due to the company's policy.  This was a person that thought I was a good employee, but she felt obligated to the company.  I was fortunate that I had other references, but I think that the academic world will have to accept the fact that this is a reality in the business environment and should not put that much weight in references.

Rosemary Burgos-Mira
LIU- CW Post Campus

	-----Original Message-----
	From: Marilyn Miller [mailto:miller.129@OSU.EDU]
	Sent: Mon 2/23/2004 3:48 PM
	Subject: Re: [SERIALST] Letters of Reference

	I find this thread fascinating since I was not aware that this was
	happening in the library world.  I do know why this sort of thing is
	happening in general.  Several months ago I was talking with someone who is
	job hunting in the business career world.  He told me that he cannot get a
	reference from his previous employer because they are not allowed to give
	references.  It seems that another former employee in the company sued his
	former employer big-time because a bad reference was given and that person
	did not get the job because of it.  So the blanket rule was made for
	everyone in the company - no references are to be given.  What a shame that
	in our litigation-happy world employers cannot obtain references for people
	they are interested in hiring!   I will be looking forward to advice people
	on this list give to job hunters so that I can pass it along to the
	job-hunting person who first told me about this.

	Marilyn Miller

	At 04:35 PM 2/20/2004 -0500, you wrote:
	>I haven't had much luck searching the archives of AUTOCAT or SERIALST on
	>this topic, so I thought I'd post to the lists.
	>Recently one of my references informed me that the new Human Resources
	>policy at his institution restricts him to simply verifying my dates in
	>employment when contacted by potential employers.  He suggested that
	>because of this I should find an alternative reference in the future.
	>I know this restriction is not new to the workplace, but it is the
	>first time it has affected me personally and I would like to know how
	>other people are handling or would handle this situation -- whether you
	>are seeking employment, on a search committee to fill an open position,
	>or someone who writes or has written letters of reference (with or
	>without this institutional restriction).
	>I am also feeling at a loss because this particular reference is the
	>only person who can comment upon certain skills that I acquired while
	>working at his library (i.e., in my work experience, they were unique to
	>that position).
	>Thanks in advance for any thoughts, suggestions, recommendations, etc.
	>you can give me!
	>Karen Nadeski
	>Project Cataloger, Connecticut History Online
	>Connecticut State Library
	>231 Capitol Ave.
	>Hartford, CT 06106