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Thursday, January 25, 2007

Noncompete "Conventional Wisdom"

Here is a noncompete Q&A from Sunday's NY Times "Career Coach" column. Here's a flavor:

Q. Is there a way to avoid these issues altogether?

A. Not if an employer insists on a noncompete agreement.

Peter Polachi, managing partner at Polachi & Company, an executive search firm in Framingham, Mass., says that because a noncompete agreement has such bearing on future employability, it should be regarded as a crucial facet of a job offer — equivalent to factors like pay and benefits packages.

D. Kevin Berchelmann, president of Triangle Performance, a consulting firm in Spring, Tex., says that if a prospective employer insists on a signed agreement, you have a choice: approve the document or decline it and start your job search all over again.

“Noncompete agreements are not designed to be win-win for employees,” he said. “No matter how much you may not like the idea of a noncompete, if you want the job, you may have to sign.”

[Meredith R. Miller]

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