Why You Should Or Shouldn't Take The Counteroffer When Resigning

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You’ve been interviewing for jobs even though you already have a job.Whatever your reasons for wanting to leave, if your current employer decides to make you a counteroffer when you resign, should you take it?

This all depends on your reasons for wanting to leave in the first place. 

If it’s because of more money or responsibilities, then you should refrain from accepting the tempting offer. 

“Once you’ve accepted an offer, it is not only questionable to turn it down for a counteroffer from your current employer, but also a poor career decision,” Claudio Fernández-Aráoz, a senior adviser at Egon Zehnder International and the author of “Great People Decisions,” told Amy Gallo at Lifehacker.

Reasons such as money or more responsibilities can easily be worked out with your current employer, so they may feel a breach of trust if you decide to go on job interviews instead of approaching them first.

In this case, most people end up leaving — or getting fired — shortly after accepting the counteroffer, Fernández-Aráoz said. 

Debra Auerbach agrees in her post at CareerBuilder and says that a “counteroffer can often create more problems than it can solve.”

“By resigning, you’ve severed the bond of trust with your company,” Judi Perkins, career coach and founder of Find the Perfect Job, told Auerbach. “It’s like catching your partner cheating. There will always be that bit of doubt. You’ll eventually leave the company, but next time it will be on their terms, not yours.”

So when is it OK to accept the counteroffer?

Your employer may be more understanding if your reason for wanting to leave had something to do with your lifestyle. For example, if the other job is closer to your home, or is a better choice for your family at the moment.

Tim Malone, a computer technician, writes at TechRepublic that he wanted to leave his company, because the other job offer was closer to home, but when he resigned, his company made him a counteroffer he couldn’t refuse:

“When I submitted my resignation, I was shocked to receive a counteroffer that included a perk I had never before considered — working from home three days a week. In addition, the counteroffer included a promise to find a junior staffer to take care of the endless user support requests that stood in the way of progress on projects.”

“Look, I’ll admit that I’m no expert on career counseling. My area of expertise is running tech support for small businesses. So I hope you’ll forgive me for stepping out of the box on this one. I’m just going to throw this out for consideration. To have a successful working relationship with the boss, there has got to be some trust.”

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