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In today's competitive market, you are more likely than not to receive a counter-offer.  While counter-offers may be tempting and even flattering, there can be pitfalls that you need to be aware of. 

Ask yourself these questions:

  • Will your loyalty always be in question?
  • If there are future cutbacks, will you be the first to go because of concerns about your loyalty?
  • If you accept the counter-offer for more money, are you just giving your employer the time they need to locate and select your replacement?
  • Will your career track remain blocked if you accept it?
  • Will your responsibilities be expanded?
  • Will you have to report to a person you don't respect?
  • Have you just received next year's raise or bonus early?
  • Is the counter-offer a ploy to avoid a short-term inconvenience by your employer?
  • What are your realistic chances for promotion now that you have considered leaving?

Counter-Offer Statistics

According to national surveys of employees that accept counter-offers, 50-80% voluntarily leave their employer within six months of accepting the counter-offer because of promises not kept.  The majority of the balance of employees that accept counter-offers involuntarily leave their current employers within twelve months of accepting the counter- offer (terminated, fired, laid off, etc.)
As attractive as counter-offers may appear, they greatly decrease your chances of achieving your career potential.

Once you've accepted a new position and are ready to turn in your notice, you should be prepared for the counteroffer.  Some companies will try to offer you more money to stay, but remember, they never work in the long run.

Here are Ten Reasons Why:

  1. You've made your employer aware that you're unhappy.  From this day on, your loyalty will always be in question.  You will never again be part of the team.
  2. When promotion time comes around, your employer will remember who is loyal and who is not.  The employee who has never thought of moving on will be the one who gets the next promotion.
  3. When times are tough, your employer will begin the cutbacks with you! They will remember the day you resigned -- not all of the hard work you have put in.
  4. Where is the money for the counteroffer coming from?  All companies have wage and salary guidelines that must be followed.  Did your next raise just come early?
  5. Your company will immediately start looking for a new person at a cheaper price.  They may give you the extra money now, but be aware in the future.
  6. The same circumstances that caused you to consider a change will repeat themselves in the future, even if you accept a counteroffer.  There was a reason you started looking.  What changed?
  7. Statistics show that if you accept a counteroffer, the probability of voluntarily leaving in six months or being let go in one year is extremely high.  Seventy percent of the employees leave in six     months.  The other 30% get let go.
  8. Accepting a counteroffer is an insult to your intelligence and a blow to your personal pride -- you were bought.
  9. Once word gets out, the relationship that you now enjoy with your co-workers will never be the same.  You will lose the personal satisfaction of peer group acceptance.  Word will get out that you were bought.
  10. What type of company do you work for if you have to threaten to resign before they give you what you are worth?
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