Hi, I'd like to seek advice on a troublesome situation:
Long story short, I didn't get along with my line manager and I was laid off. After a few months, I got an offer from a firm, but the firm wants me to get a referral letter from my previous company, so I asked the line managers' boss (partner) to do this favour. My relationship with him was okay, but not too close.
Today I met a senior partner, who is even more senior than my line manager's boss, and she asked me which firm I will join. Although I'm reluctant to share the information, I still gave her the answer because she could easily know by asking the partner who helped with my reference check.
My concern is, I was laid off by my previous firm and my previous line manager was unhappy about my performance. I am planning to meet with several ex-colleagues for coffee chats to farewell since I will be moving to another location nearby. It's highly possible that I will bump into these ex-colleagues again, given that some of the clients are overlapping (but providing different services).
My concern is I don't want people to badmouth me to my new employer before I have even started the job. Given that 2 most senior partners already know where am I going, should I let other colleagues know which firm will I join? What would be some good ways to avoid giving out this information?