So you finally decided to leave your current job. You sent out resumes, went on interviews, and were offered a position by a new employer. All that’s left is to put in your resignation at your current job. You hand over your letter of resignation….and your boss immediately makes a counter-offer for you to stay. What should you do now?
Every situation is different, but most experts say that it’s not generally a good idea to accept a counter-offer. Here are some reasons you might want to accept, along with some reasons to pass.
Why People Accept Counter-Offers
The main reasons to accept have to do with familiarity. Even if you really don’t like your current job, you’re probably comfortable in your role. You know what to expect. Taking a new job means taking a leap of faith into the unknown. What if you don’t like your new coworkers, or your commute, or your job duties?
You might also feel that the fact that you received a counter-offer means your company values you. Maybe you can work things out. In some cases, this is true. But before you jump at the opportunity, consider the downside.
Reasons Not to Accept a Counter-Offer
The first question to ask yourself is, if you mean so much to the company, why did they wait until you decided to leave to offer you a better deal? Should you have gotten that raise or promotion or whatever they’re offering during your last review? Maybe they’re making the counter-offer not because they don’t want to lose *you*, but because they don’t want to be short an employee.
Once you’ve given your notice, there’s a strong possibility that the company will always question your loyalty. You might be passed over for plum projects and other opportunities, as your boss worries that you will end up leaving soon anyway. Even worse, there’s a possibility that the counter-offer is only designed to get you to stay until they find a suitable replacement.
Finally, it likely took you a lot of thought and struggle to get to the point of accepting a new job. Are you really going to be happy staying at the original company just because you get more money or a flexible schedule or whatever you’re being offered? The odds are that you will end up regretting your decision, or at least always wondering what might have been.
Only you know your unique circumstances, so ultimately, you will need to do what’s right for you. Just go into it with your eyes wide open and carefully weigh the pros and cons when making your decision.
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