Counter Offer Advice

Wall Street Journal Article on Counter Offers

A recruitment company such as ours becomes familiar with the dynamics of the job market. The people working in the company become familiar with the hiring and firing dynamics as well as the acceptance and resignation game.

In South Africa the skills shortage is a particular problem and no company wants to lose their skilled employees – so most often we see an offer we see a counter offer too. We cannot stress this enough – Accepting a counter offer is possibly the worst thing you can do for your career. In our business we refer to this as ‘career suicide’.

Everyone in your industry – your current employer, the recruitment agencies, and your future employers will merely see you as money hungry and you will lose respect in your current work environment. That is not all however. In addition to this your current employer will no longer trust you – thinking that as soon as you get something better, the same thing will happen. Your relationship with your current employer will be compromised. They very often promise you things as they want to keep things going but they will very soon put steps in place to move responsibility and look at hiring someone else.

There is a reason as to why you approached a recruitment agency to find you new employment – you wanted to leave where you are currently employed. Now think of those reasons.

It took you having to spend time , uncertain about your future, looking for a new position, going for interviews and resigning for your current employer to get a wake-up – no one should be recognised in this way. Your company may offer you more money and other in the counter offer, but because of the break in trust, your financial growth in your current company will be much slower – in fact it will probably be non-existent. With your new company you will have a clean slate – a pure relationship – nothing has been done for them to doubt you or for you to doubt them. Your financial growth with them will be at a much faster rate. 

If your concern is career development then we can tell you if you accept the counter offer your career development will completely stagnate – they are not going to want to invest resources in you out of fear of you accepting another offer. However with your new company it will be in their best interests to develop you and invest in you.

We could go on and on but will end with this: We see this daily and in 100% of cases candidates who accept counter offers come back to us in 4 to 6 months asking for us to get another offer and organise more interviews etc .. and this is where you see the damage. The company that previously made you the offer and indeed other companies that you had been approaching now merely see you as money hungry and don’t want to waste time interviewing you and drawing up offers when you just going to accept a counter offer. 

We understand that you can feel guilt about leaving your current employer in the lurch ... and we as humans we resist change however change is where we grow the most. 

We trust that you will do what is best for your career. Make the right decision!

The Wall Street Journal article on ‘Counter Offers’ attached below makes for an interesting read

More Career Advice

Starting A New Job
Career Management
Resignation Advice
Counter Offer Advice