Note to mods: I posted this in another thread but thought that it could use its own. I'll leave it to you.
This came up after a recent interview and I am not sure how to handle it. The main interviewer asked me for references (no problem). However, he wanted current coworkers (ok), some academic refs (ok), and references from people (i.e., citizens) that I have worked with directly for their assessment of my ability (WHAT??).
I have never been asked for that before. To be perfectly honest, I don't feel that is appropriate either. As a current govt employee, I don't see how I could call up someone (contractor, developer, etc) and ask them to serve as a reference for another job. Has anybody ever had to do this? Is this a regular request of planning positions? I am not in the planning field right now, but I work for govt dealing with many of the same groups of people (developers, contractors, general public) in land issues.
I really want the job, but I don't think I can do this. Thoughts?