When considering leaving your current position, it's not uncommon for your employer to make a counteroffer to keep you on board. In fact, only 38% of hiring managers reported not making counteroffers at all. From retaining top performers to avoiding the costly process of recruiting, there are many reasons why companies may opt for this route.
So, why shouldn’t you accept an employer’s counteroffer? We explore the reasons you may want to think twice about before deciding:
Your loyalty will be questioned
Trust and loyalty are essential for any professional relationship. However, accepting a counteroffer after initially submitting your resignation may break the initial trust that was once there.
Despite the employer's willingness to make you a counteroffer, it’s likely that they will still view your decision to leave as a lack of commitment. This could result in a damaged relationship, making it difficult to advance your career within the company. Not only that, but your employer may be sceptical about your long-term commitment and whether you will entertain other job offers in the future.
Your current employer may not follow through on their promises
While it's natural to hope that your employer will follow through on their promises, it's important to be realistic. Your employer may not be able to deliver on what they had outlined in the counteroffer, or they may make changes that are not in your best interest. Therefore, it’s essential to get any changes you expect to see clearly outlined before deciding.
Underlying issues may not be addressed
According to research, 80% of candidates who accept a counteroffer from their current employer end up leaving within 6 months. This comes as no surprise when you consider that 89% of bosses think that money rather than workplace culture issues drive their employees to quit. This means a counteroffer may be solely revolved around salary or promotion, rather than addressing the conditions that prompted you to look for a new job.
Whether it’s a difficult boss, poor management, limited opportunities for career progression, or simply not liking the job in general, it’s unlikely that a counteroffer will address these problems long-term.
It’s not uncommon for candidates to miss out on a great opportunity if they decide to remain with their current employer. In fact, many employees accept counteroffers based on financial gain and to avoid the hassle that comes with starting a new job.
Ultimately, they may have turned down a role that’s more suited to their long-term goals. Therefore, it’s essential to carefully weigh up the pros and cons of both opportunities based on how they align with your personal needs and values, and not feel pressured to stick with your existing employer.
It could create uncertainty in your existing role
When accepting a counteroffer, it’s essential to consider the longevity of both job offers. Especially if a counteroffer is tempting because it involves a higher salary, it could put your position in the existing company at risk.
Whether it’s finding a candidate who is more committed or aligns better with the workplace culture, it’s not uncommon for an employer to begin searching for a replacement if an employee decides to stay.
Should I tell my new employer about a counteroffer?
Although it may seem like a good idea, there are several reasons why it may not be advisable to tell your new employer about a counteroffer - like how it would impact your existing role, it could damage your reputation and long-term prospects in addition to making your new employer less willing to negotiate. However, each situation is unique, and it depends on your individual circumstances and the nature of your relationships with both companies.
Ultimately, whether you accept a counteroffer will come down to personal circumstances. However, it’s important to consider all the potential drawbacks that have been outlined before you decide. If you do decide to accept, be sure to address any underlying issues that led you to look for a new job in the first place and make sure that your employer is committed to addressing them.
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