I have encountered a few times when I would extend a job offer to a candidate only to have their current employer counter it with an offer of their own. Some candidates accepted the counter offer while others said, “Thanks, but no thanks.”
I was always surprised (and disappointed) by those who accepted the counter offer for the same reasons I share with you that you should not accept them:
1. Typically, by the time you’ve engaged in a job search to the point of receiving an offer, you’ve already weighed the pros and cons of remaining with your current employer, and decided the leap was worth more. When this is the case, why look back?
2. The reason you’re leaving is because there’s something you want out of your job or career that you aren’t receiving with your current employer; often more money or a promotion. If you stay, there’s a good chance your employer will put a bandage on your frustration to pacify you, but the root of your desire to leave probably won’t go away.
3. If you’ve been trying to gain the recognition you want and not receiving it, and suddenly it comes when you announce you’re leaving, I hate to tell you this but you aren’t getting this recognition because your employer believes you deserve it. You’re getting it because your absence is going to create a hardship for your boss and the people left behind, and they don’t want that. Is this really a good reason to stay?
Of course there’s always a chance your decision to stay could work out, but I’m not sure the odds are in your favor. If the future opportunity really looks promising, why not take a chance and try it? If it doesn’t work out, your former employer just might take you back.
The candidates that accepted the counter offer were knocking on my door within a period of a couple of years in search of a new opportunity.