Posted by: davidsandusky | August 19, 2008

Counter Offers Just extend Inevitable

Have you ever conducted a “passive” job search to test the market and leverage a pay increase in your current job? 

Congratulations and hold everything!

Congratulations because smart people always keep an eye out to understand the market, trends and how they can grow and market their personal brand. 

Hold everything if your agenda is to negotiate a pay raise or promotion with an offer from another company in hand.  Why?  Loyalty is out the window.  Your company might be willing to provide a counter to retain you while they look for your replacement.  Or, you may soon realize why you actually considered leaving and the pay increase is not it.  All the while, you showed your cards to the new company who thought they pre-closed a candidate they want to hire only to find out leverage was the agenda – trust equity is down – bad personal brand.

Consider this: Do you have expectations in place with your current boss and company that addresses accomplishments and fair pay?  Are you managing a career strategy and communicating goals? 

If/when you plan to move on, why?  Are you no longer challenged?  Bored or boring?  Culture or relationship issue of some kind?  Sit back and consider what you love about your job and what you can do to change what you don’t.  If you are not inspired, it may be time to move on – don’t accept a counter offer.  Move on an maintain great relationships. 

The wild card is when you are recruited out of left field for an opportunity that warrants real consideration.  In this case, review pros and cons including timing within your career strategy and pay for value.  Review with your trusted personal board of advisors.  If you are going to stay, stay.  If you are going to go, go.  This decision process is easy if you have a career strategy and communication in place within current company because you know where you stand today.  Now, you may learn something about yourself that could change course in your career strategy this year.  Fine, plans change all the time.  Know why and work with your current boss on adjustments to what you want to accomplish for the company. 

An accepted counter offer clouds the upcoming year.  I have seen it far to often.  Counter offer scenarios result in departure within a year many times.

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