How to handle a counter offer

11 February 2020

By Josh Fuller

​What’s a counter offer? A counter offer is where your current employer offers you something to stay after you’ve accepted a job elsewhere and have handed in your notice. This is often more money but could also be added responsibility, a new job title, a promotion or anything else that gets you to change your mind and stay.

Take your time

It’s very flattering to have your employer fall over themselves to keep you. However you need to think carefully before changing your mind. At this stage you have 2 companies who want you to work for them and you can afford to take some time to make the right decision.

Consider why did you decided to look for another job in the first place and why you decided to accept the new job. Weigh up both jobs. Compare the salary/benefits/working environment/long term career opportunities. Plus all the other things that are important to you.

Current employer

Also consider why your current employer hadn’t offered a bigger salary/more responsibility/new job title etc before? Maybe you didn’t discuss the fact you were unhappy with them? Was this their first opportunity to show you have valued you are? However, if they did know and the counter offer is a gesture to keep you maybe you need to consider whether you want to work for a company that only offer you what you want/need as a last resort?

A large proportion of people who accept the counter offers end up looking for work again within 6 months. Not having their original reasons addressed is usually the reason. Short term gains can be very flattering and leave you blinded. Think long term and be sure to make the right decision for you.

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