Should I accept that counteroffer?

accepting counter job offers

Guide to accepting counter job offers

You made the decision to make that move and look for your next job as a Project Manager, Cloud Infrastructure specialist, Service Delivery Manager or Security Analyst. The day of handing in your notice looms and your manager sits across the desk and pleads for you to stay with an offer of more money and / or a new role…

If you type “should I accept that counteroffer” in to Google then you’ll see countless blogs and help posts so there isn’t really much that I can say here that will be ground-breaking but…

The key thing is to make sure you read a few, some of which that come at the problem from a different angle. Most of the agency blogs are trying to give a balanced view but ultimately if you do decide to remain with your existing employer then you’re not taking their (or our!) job so try as we might, it is difficult to remain completely impartial! Some of the other articles are written from an employer’s perspective and they’re probably biased slightly the other way.

The most important factor you need to put front and centre is “will the counteroffer resolve my original reasons for leaving”?

Dig deep on this though – money is a hygiene factor when making a decision to start hunting for a new job. You need to ask yourself “why do I want to leave” then “why else”, “why else” and “why else”.

Motivation in the workplace has been studied for decades and different people prioritise different factors – both you and your situation are unique. I’d suggest considering some of the following and then score existing versus new on that basis:

  • Leadership – who do you report in to, do you trust them, do they bring out the best in you? There’s the old adage of people leave a boss not a job…
  • Advancement – what opportunity is there in the business for you to progress? The IT Recruitment Market gives plenty of scope for progression and promotion and sometimes a new job may be necessary.
  • Security – how well is the business performing, what are the competitors doing and is your business better or worse than them?
  • Technology – Everyone wants a job that holds their interest and within IT / Technology the products you’re working with play a key role. You want to be working on the latest tools and technologies and doing something that others may not be. How important is this for you?
  • Autonomy – are you micro-managed or respected and trusted to get on with your job?
  • Mastery – our urge to get better at something. Can we do that in our job?
  • Purpose – do you believe in what the business is doing?
  • Recognition – do you go home knowing that you’ve done a good job – this can be but isn’t necessarily linked to reward. Money is key up until the point where you have enough for money not to be an issue!
  • Location – with more time now spent working from home the importance of the base location may lessen over time but in recent times the thought of spending an hour and a half each way versus a 10 minute trip was quite often key in that decision making process
  • Reward – the overall package salary + benefits

If you want to learn more about what motivates humans, this animated video is really cool and links in to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs:

I could end this by giving some made up stat around the percentage of people that end up moving within 6 months of accepting a counteroffer but that just wouldn’t be fair! Whether or not you take that counteroffer has to be down to you – just try to consider a wide range of factors and make sure that if you’re going to stay it is down to the right reasons and that all of your reasons for wanting to leave in the first place have been resolved.

Picture of Ben Leeds
Ben Leeds
With over 20 years’ in the recruitment industry Ben has seen quite a bit and hopes that by sharing some thoughts he can help you to either hire the best person or find the right job!
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