Why Not to Accept that Counter Offer
Congratulations! You have accepted a job offer at another company and are ready to make the transition. You’ve turned in your two weeks and started packing up your desk. All of a sudden, your current boss calls you into his office and out of his files pulls out a counter offer for you to stay. What do you do? Do you take it or do you politely decline and finish your packing? This is the decision the majority of employees face when choosing to leave to another company. Counter offers are all too common, and over 60% of employees will receive a company offer before switching companies. Even though the counter may seem persuasive, it’s still probably not the best option for you or your career for a number of reasons.
1)The company may not be keeping you for the right reasons
It may be flattering that the company wants to keep you, but the question you should be asking is “why they want to keep you.” The hard truth is that the reason they want to keep you so bad is because training someone new takes a lot of time and money. Although they may have given you a nice raise, or even a promotion, the amount they would have spent training someone else would have cost a lot more. It may still be true that they want to keep you for your irreplaceable work ethic, but hiring costs were also a factor.
2)Your salary increase has to be coming from somewhere
For most companies, budgets are approved at the beginning of the fiscal quarter or year. What that means for you is that pay raises and bonuses do not come out of thin air. The monetary increase included in your counter offer had to come from another pot, and in most cases that pot was yours. The bonus or raise you may have gotten later that year is gone the second you accept the counter offer. Therefore, you actually are not getting anything extra that you wouldn’t have already gotten before.
3)There was a reason you wanted to leave
Think back to when you were still weighing the pros and cons of the new company and your current company. There was a reason you chose to leave your current company to pursue the new opportunity. These may have involved company culture, people, career growth, benefits, or pay. If you go with the counter offer, nothing will change. The company culture will remain the same, you will be working with the same people, and even if you did get a raise, more benefits, or a promotion these will just postpone the next time you move up in your career. The new company is offering to reboot your career, their recruiters find value in you and the move may even surprise you.
4)Trust between you and your employer is not what it was before.
Once you turned in your letter of resignation to your boss, you told them your intentions to leave for greener pastures. They know that there are certain benefits that another company is offering you that persuaded you to want to leave, and if you could be persuaded once what keeps you from getting persuaded again? Even if you accept the counter offer, your relationship with the company won’t return back to normal for months or even years. This distrust may harm your career the next time it’s time for a promotion, or even keep you from accessing certain parts of the business.
5)You burnt the bridge with the other company
The other company is putting their trust in you. You have already accepted the offer, and you have given them your word that you would work with them. By going against your word you are tarnishing your brand and your image with the company. If you don’t like it, then there is a much higher chance that your current company will hire you back than the other company taking a chance on you again. Your chances of being given another offer with the same company later in your career have dramatically decreased.
We understand that counter offers can be tempting and sometimes even over-whelming. However, by making the switch you will advance your career and gain a new set of skills in a new environment that will help you grow. If you are thinking about leaving your current company but don’t know where to start, contact us and we will get the ball rolling toward new opportunities.
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