Should I Accept a Counter-Offer?

Counter Offer

“I submitted my resignation as I’ve found a better paying job, but my boss wants me to reconsider. He has indicated he is happy to give me a salary raise to match what the new job offer. Should I accept and stay?” 

You need to assess if salary is the only thing you are dissatisfied with at your current job. 9.5/10 times, that’s just not the case. And if it’s not, don’t hold out hope that things are going to change if you accept. Sure, in the short run, your boss may treat you a little better, but once you’ve thrown in the towel, you get the words “flight risk” added to the end of your name. Your commitment will be questioned, so you’re likely to be first on the chopping board when cutbacks happen, and last in line for promotions.

If you do want to consider the counter-offer, I’d suggest having a frank conversation with your boss on why it took a resignation letter for him to consider giving you a pay rise, and how many strings are attached to it. In most cases, you’d find that it’s nothing more than a desperate reaction because:

  1. He can then tell HIS boss that he’s tried everything to retain you.
  2. He doesn’t want his attrition to go up because it looks bad on him.
  3. He’s afraid to get stuck with your work when you’re gone.

Unless he can give you a really good reason to stay that has nothing to do with money, you’re better off actually sticking to your word once you’ve tendered. This Chinese proverb says it all: “好马不吃回头草” – A good horse never goes back to eat the grass he has passed by – i.e. A capable employee never goes back to the company he has left. There are always greener pastures out there. Don’t be short-sighted.

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