Contributor: Pamela Inglis, Recruiter – Rostie & Associates.
Okay. This is a tough one. I know there are a lot of articles out there about this subject – written by people far more eloquent than I am. But, they basically all say the same thing:
DON’T DO IT!
You’re always going to find someone who will tell you that they took a count-offer, got a great big raise and things couldn’t have worked out better. Believe me, they’re the exception.
Consider things from your employer’s perspective. Here you come, offer in hand from a competitor. Do they really want you going there? I’m sure there are many reasons why they wouldn’t, regardless of how much integrity you have. Perhaps you’re a sales rep and you’ve got deals underway. Do they risk losing the deal if you’re not there to close it? Perhaps the timing isn’t good – maybe, unbeknownst to you, one of your colleagues just gave their notice. Regardless of the reasons they’re going to be in the position of having to back-fill your role – and not at their convenience.
If you do accept a counter-offer you need to be prepared for the consequences because they are not going to forget that you (probably) took time off to interview elsewhere and were seriously considering leaving their employ. Could be an opportunity for a promotion that passes you by; or no raises again – ever. Or, worst, and most likely case, they will let you go when it’s convenient for them. And that opportunity you had? Long gone.
So, consider this, if the only reason you’re considering making a move is salary, pull up your garters and have an open and honest talk with your boss. I know what you’re thinking, it may not go well. And it might not. But at least you’ll know where you stand.
You also have to consider that if they’re not willing to give you a raise, one that you truly believe you deserve, then it’s probably time to call your favourite recruiter.