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Why you shouldn’t accept that counter-offer

Why you shouldn’t accept that counter-offer
27th September 2017 Amy

Why you shouldn’t accept that counter-offer

After months of careful consideration, multiple stages of interviews, meetings and assessments; you’ve landed a new job. You’ve been unhappy in your present role for a while, constantly looking forward to the weekend, or a bank holiday, or annual leave as a break from the day-to-day constraints of your present role. You’ve written your formal notice letter, and scheduled the time to speak with your boss, or a member of your HR team to formally advise them of your departure.

Then they counter-offer.

It may feel like the easy option to accept the counter-offer.  Disruption to your life will be minimal; you won’t have to learn a new role, or the names of your new colleagues, or the easiest route to your new office.

So should you accept? Here’s four reasons why you shouldn’t.


They wouldn’t give you a raise without it

You’ve put in the extra hours when needed, worked your hardest to fulfil the role to the best of your ability, been helpful and conscientious to your colleagues and you’ve not received a pay rise. Suddenly, your boss is able to source the money to offer you an uplift on your salary. Something doesn’t add up.

Where is the money for your counter-offer coming from? It’s likely it was your next pay rise early. If by some miracle you stay another year, it’s unlikely you’ll get another pay rise again.

Why are they only offering this to you now? You had to quit before they offered you a pay rise! It would be easy to think that’s because you’ve become more valuable now that you have threatened to quit; but it’s more likely that your boss doesn’t want the hassle and disruption of your departure – it’s easier and cheaper to keep you.

Why did they not value you as an employee before? If you were valued in the way you ought to be this would have been acknowledged sooner; when you were giving the role your all every single day. Has your counter-offer been offered as a result of your merit, or is it because the company do not want to invest the time and money in replacing you?


Diminishing job security

You’ve been loyal to the company for as long as you’ve been there, but it’s taken you threatening to leave for them to show you you’re valuable. When it’s time to let people go, cut back on personnel or reduce hours, it’s likely you’ll be one of the first to know. Your loyalty and trustworthiness has been compromised by your willingness to leave, and your boss won’t forget that.

Additionally, you’ve shown your boss you are unhappy and don’t really want to be there; your commitment will always be questioned. If you’ve handed in your notice once, there’s nothing stopping you doing so again in the future.

What about your co-workers? Some may be resentful for the pay rise you just got, and how you obtained it. They too, will be questioning your loyalty and how much of a ‘team-player’ you are. You may even find yourself left out of important decision-making meetings, or shunned in social situations as a result of your decision.


You’re going to leave anyway

You’re clearly not happy in your current role, and as a result of your attempt to resign your work environment may now be different too. What’s stopping you trying to leave again?

CyberCoders found that four out of five employees who accept counter-offers end up leaving their company within nine months, and some statistics indicate that up to 90% of those who accept counter-offers actually leave after only six months, or are terminated within a year!

If your reasons for leaving were not money-orientated, they will still exist despite the pay rise. Reasons such as working conditions, variety of work, company structure, co-worker issues and company culture are all valid reasons to want to look elsewhere. No amount of money will help to reinvigorate motivation to work for a company you are no longer in tune with.


You’ve already decided to go elsewhere

You’ve already accepted another job!! Your new employer is eagerly awaiting your first day; they’re planning where you will sit in the office and scheduling meetings with your new team. They’re ordering your business cards and setting up your desk. They’ve shown you they value you by offering you a salary representative of your skills, experience and character.

In addition, you’ve bought into this company. You’ve gone through their selection process and met members of their team. Not to mention the time you’ve spent attending interviews and completing assessments for them. You’ve identified skills you possess that align with the job description they need to fulfill. You have taken the first step in progressing with your career.



There are many reasons to consider taking a counter offer, but having committed yourself to another role you have already taken that first step towards the rest of your career.


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