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Your Employer Made a Counteroffer…Now What?

BY: admin | June 14, 2019


In the current competitive market, employers are well aware of the challenges of not only attracting new talent to join their organization, but also retaining the great employees that they currently have. In order to help prevent great employees from leaving their organization, employers will often present a counteroffer upon the receipt of a resignation.

If you are ever on the receiving end of a counteroffer, it may sound tempting at first.  A boost in pay, promises of a promotion, and no learning curve; what’s not to like?

But before you accept an enticing counteroffer, ask yourself these important questions:

  •  If a raise or promotion is only presented to you in response to your resignation, why was your true value not recognized earlier? Will you have to threaten to quit every time you want a promotion or increase in salary?
  • Since you had already planned on resigning, will your loyalty to the company remain in question after you accept the counteroffer? If so, how will that affect your professional relationships in the organization?
  • Is it possible that the counteroffer was made to stall as they find a suitable replacement for you?
  • Do the terms of the counteroffer really satisfy all of the reasons you originally had for wanting to leave?

If you don’t find the answer to any of these questions to be satisfactory, it is likely best to respectfully decline the offer.  So, how do you decline without burning any bridges? Remember to be appreciative, assertive, and accommodating in your response.

For example, your response could go something like this:

“Thank you for the offer, Mrs./Mr. ________.  Out of respect to the commitment that I have made to my future employer, I must respectfully decline.  I am committed to ensuring that there is a smooth transition as you back-fill my position and am willing to provide any assistance that I can after my time here is concluded.”

Keeping your response short and professional will almost always ensure that your professional relationship will remain intact and you can pursue your new opportunity free of guilt or regrets.