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Why you shouldn't accept a counter offer after resigning

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A year ago, I had a candidate who was delighted to accept a role with a Cpl client. Our client rejected all candidates from the process and was delighted the candidate was joining. 2 weeks later the candidate withdrew as he was counter offered – even though at the final round interview he had promised the client he wouldn’t accept a counter offer.

Like 90% of candidates who accept a counter offer, the candidate was soon back on the market and reached out to us about a new to market client we were working with exclusively. It turns out the previous client was now heading up the division he wanted to join. Unfortunately, our client confirmed he wouldn’t be considered as he was not trustworthy.

When the temptation of an increase in salary and the “promises” of promotion are put in front of you it is very easy to have your head turned by a current employer. This is when you need to be strong and remind yourself why you were leaving in the first place.

Remember the main motivation in looking for a new job

In most cases if you’re unhappy in a job an increase in salary or “promised” promotion down the line won’t make you happy.

You have been given a new opportunity by a company who feel you can add great value to their team, a fresh start and a chance to leave those problems of old behind. Accepting a counter offer by your current employer will just leave you in the same situation as before, only now you have the regret of turning down a chance to leave.

Always remember the main motivation for leaving in the first place.

Know your worth

Ask yourself why did it take handing in your notice for your boss to give you an increase or opportunity of promotion?

If your boss didn’t think you were worth extra money in the first place, then this certainly won’t change when their hand has been forced into giving you an increase.

Know your worth as an employee, think back to the reason you were looking to leave in the first place and grab your new opportunity with both hands.

What happens if you do accept the counter offer?

For most employees who accept a counter offer it doesn’t take long to realise they’ve made a mistake. In fact, 85% are on the lookout less than 6 months after acceptance.

When you have handed in your notice you have shown you are unhappy and not a loyal team member, even if your reasons for leaving are justified. This means your commitment to the company will be questioned and will have a negative impact when it comes to promotion time. Hardly a motivator for when putting up with the issues that led you to hand in the notice in first place.  

Whether it is due to a lack of opportunity, feeling undervalued or just dreading that long commute each morning, we all have different reasons for wanting to leave a job. If you are offered a counter offer think it through, remember why you decided to leave in the first place and consider your own worth.

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