Ten questions to ask yourself when you receive a counteroffer (and why you shouldn’t accept one)

Story by Gemma Beasley / May 2, 2023

  1. Why did it take you resigning for the company/your boss to give you a pay rise?
  2. Is the career progression or project pipeline going to suddenly appear? Why wasn’t it available before?
  3. Will you be as appreciated and valued as much as your peers now that you showed your hand by resigning? 
  4. If you’ve just accepted a pay rise in your counteroffer, how much budget will be left to give you a “normal” annual pay rise? How long will it now be until your next pay rise?
  5. Is the company just stalling the inevitable? Will your boss now be looking for a replacement, now they know you’d planned on leaving? 
  6. If the industry gets slow, will you be the first on the list to get laid off? Companies tend to value those who show loyalty rather than those who’ve been looking for new jobs (and have been given pay rises they weren’t planning on giving you)
  7. Are you prepared to settle back into the same old routine? Where did the excitement for the new role and the new challenges go? You went on that interview for a reason…
  8. Have any of the “other reasons” you chose to look for a new job changed? Are you still reporting to the same boss you didn’t like? Are company politics the same? Is there still a slow decision-making process or lack of value placed on your expertise? Do they have enough work for you now?
  9. If you end up accepting a counteroffer, your loyalty will be questioned. It’s human nature. Your employer will always have a niggling doubt as to how much longer you will stay with them. That can have an impact on end of year bonuses and promotion opportunities.
  10. If you’re not laid off, you’ll probably end up quitting – again. Statistics show that over 80% of those who accept a counteroffer end up leaving, voluntarily or not – within one year.

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