You’re unhappy with your present job, so you’ve been job hunting day and night, before work and after work and even during your lunch breaks. Finally, you land a brand-new position that gives you what you’ve been after; be that more money, a work-life balance or new internal progression opportunities. Now all that’s left to do is hand in your notice. Simple enough. Give the notice, work it, then start your new job in a couple of weeks’ time. However, what happens when your current employer turns the tables and says, “Tell me what they offered, and I’ll match it or beat it for you to stay!”.
You’ve just officially been counteroffered. Now what do you do?
Most companies will often do all they can to retain your services once you’ve resigned. They may genuinely not wish to lose you, may not want the extra workload of interviewing and recruiting or simply wish to keep you interested in staying for a limited period. Whatever their reasoning may be for giving a counteroffer you need to decide if your going to take it or not.
But before jumping headfirst into accepting, really think about it! Ask yourself this – “If you were worth X yesterday to your current employer, why after saying you're going to leave them are you suddenly worth Y to them today?”. The truth is you're not! Harsh as it may sound, it’s the truth. Because, otherwise, why would it take a real threat of leaving them for you to suddenly be given what your worth?
The reality is a counteroffer is only ever offered by your employer for selfish reasons and not because they want what’s best for you and your career. They’re trying to do what’s best for them and their business, as they rightly should! Because nothing is worse for a business than being short on numbers, but do you want to potentially damage your own career to help them?
If the carrot they’ve dangled is too hard to ignore remember why you started your job search in the first place? If what they’re offering is going to solve the issues you had initially then consider taking the offer, however, if you do you’ve now made your employer aware, you’re unhappy and from now on they’ll continue to question your loyalty.
More than likely the counteroffer won’t solve the initial issues you had. So, taking it would be counter productive as those issues wont change. They’ll ultimately resurface later down the line causing you to restart your job search. Meaning you're back to where you started all those months beforehand, but this time that job offer you had is gone as is any chance at getting back in that company’s good books.
In the end it's ultimately down to you the individual to decide whether taking a counteroffer or not is that best thing for you, but in our opinion when it comes down to it, you’re better off saying “no” to a counteroffer.