AOSB: How important is last employers reference?

Hi folks,

Just as I had a slight tiff with my boss AOSB told me they would be writing to him for a reference.

Given that he's a petty man and very fond of bearing grudges, is this something I should be worried about?

If he decides to lie and gives me a bad reference (in my short time with him I've been awarded my maximum bonus at each review and also promoted) will it go against me at Westbury?


Speak to your ACA about it, your reference needs to be a good one, I am sure you can get it changed easily. But since this has happened I would make sure you get your story straight, if your boss is mad because you didn't turn up for work and you let the place burn down, it is going to look bad.
Why place him as a referee? Is it compulsory for your last employer to be? I'm sure if you explain the problem honestly, that they could come to an arrangement. But as Sentinel points out if your "minor tiff" is over you skipping work, skimming profits, shagging his wife and generall being an ARRSE, then there may not be much you can do. Equally, having a "minor tiff" with your boss, regardless of provocation, bad enough for you to think he may hold a grudge, may not bode well with your ability to be commanded and respect the chain of command....


It may be important if you are a borderline case but not likely to affect the outcome much otherwise. Arrsers will, no doubt, be delighted to hear that I took the trouble to have a conversation with a serving Vice-President of AOSB a couple of weeks ago in order to discuss the general principles of getting through AOSB and the quality of advice here. The key thing is that if you demonstrate that you have the right combination of leadership and problem solving skills, then you are likely to be awarded a pass.

But, as Django suggests, why not find a different referee who can comment positively on your abilities?
From talking to AOSB a reference from your last employer seems to be mandatory, although given that some cadets cleverly get a non-job to tide them over while they get super fit I can’t see the reference being too important unless it reveals something bad.

As I said above I’ve been getting on well in my job and all reviews so far have been good. The tiff came about when another staff member suddenly gave in her notice, leaving my team looking a bit bare. My contract runs out next month and as I hope to get to RMAS I haven’t asked to renew it. My boss knew of this, and before my colleague said she was leaving, showed no real interest in keeping me on.

My boss, who has a complex personality but a very simple view of the world, wants me to stay on and drop the idea of the army. It sounds ridiculous but that’s the type of place I work in. Hence the fear of a bad reference.

I have plenty of other good references from previous employers and University, and as it happens my boss has cooled down a lot – the threat of me clearing my desk helped with that. Anyway, I think on balance it should be fine – I’ll raise it with my line manager, who was involved in my reviews, and see if she can take care of it.

Thanks for the advice tho!

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