I've been pretty happily employed at my present company for 8 years. I am, however, looking at positions of higher responsibility, growth and/or compensation elsewhere. I have not told anyone at my present company that I am looking.
I'd like to include at least one higher-up or a strong peer from my present company among my references. But, I think they'll feel enough commitment to my boss to disclose my search to him. I'm not yet ready to have that revealed. Any tips on how to approach someone for their confidential assistance?
Also, what are the potential ramifications with a hiring company to tell them that I haven't included any references from my present employer, because they don't know I'm looking? It's honest, but it sounds weak to me.
Thanks -- BH