Wed | May 23, 2018

Glenford Smith | Should I reject my company’s counter-offer?

Published:Sunday | April 9, 2017 | 12:00 AM

Q: Mr Smith, I have interviewed and been successful for a position, and I am going to complete my mandatory period here. The problem is that my current employer, who had said the company could not pay more, is making a counter-offer of almost the equivalent what I am being offered. They say I won't have to contend with moving and have promised a promotion the next time a position comes up. What do you advise?

- Worried

A: Thanks for your question. And congratulations on successfully interviewing for the position you wanted. Your 'problem' is one that I am sure many of people reading this column would love to have.

Avoid thinking negatively about your current employer. You may be tempted to think about why the increase now; whether it's because you have told them of the offer. Or you may start to wonder if they were thinking of promoting you all along. Refrain from entertaining any thoughts along these lines. They are likely to be counter-productive.

Having said that, regarding your company's counter-offer, having looked at it from a number of angles, it may be better to reject it altogether. Here's why.

Your current company or your manager may be trying to hold on to you, at least in the short term. With you leaving, they will have to rush to fill the position quickly. They will probably have to train the new hire to match your competence.

Your leaving might make your boss look bad. That person will question why you are leaving, what your departure says about them, and what impact it will have on the morale of other staff. All these considerations may be motivating your employer to have you reconsider your move.

The problem with this is that even if you were to take up such a position, neither the boss nor your co-workers will view you in the same way again. They will see your leaving as a lack of loyalty, leaving the staff in a lurch, or simply not being a team player. No one will say these things to your face, but you will feel them nonetheless.


Don't be resentful


Now, I just said not to think anything bad of your company, but it is a valid question to ask why they couldn't find the increase when you asked. The key is to ask this question dispassionately and resist the temptation to be bitter and resentful.

You cannot put your faith in the promise of a promotion about which you don't know when it might open up. It may never come. Never put your faith in a vague hope that you will get some consideration if a promotion turns up. The promise may be quietly forgotten and put on the back burner.

Don't pay any mind to the part about 'not contending with moving'. If one were to be uncharitable, it comes across as a bit manipulative. Stick to your guns, and all the best to you.

Good luck in the new position!

- Glenford Smith is a motivational speaker and success strategist. He is the author of 'From Problems to Power' and co-author of 'Profile of Excellence'.