Counter offer ? Take it or leave it?
This is the classic story of every mid-career engineers and other employee out there: You have been job hunting and went for few interviews and now you are being offered a new job. When you submitted your resignation letter to your superior, you are being counter-offered. What should you do?
Well, you came to the right place. Listed below are a few questions that will help you consider whether you should take that offer or not. Let's take a look and assess the situation first before deciding to take it or leave it.
1. What are the Pros and Cons?
Many people who ended up accepting a counter offer are usually tempted by the increase in salary.
Besides salary, another factor that will be taken into consideration is that you wouldn't have to deal with the stress of adjusting to adapt to new working environment. But, how does your future actually look like with this company?
In the first place, even considering leaving the company will be seen as a lack of loyalty by superiors, and your interaction with such superiors might change because of this - you might not be involved in certain strategic works and plans due to the newfound lack of trust. Besides that, your colleague might interact with you differently as well. In Japan, this would probably have to do with the concept of 終身雇用（しゅうしんこよう, shuushin koyou) which basically refers to the company culture wherein companies tended to hire workers that could work at that company for the rest of their life. While it's less prominent nowadays, and transferring jobs to gain other types of experience in different companies/industries is becoming more accepted, one might still face a certain hesitance when thinking about leaving their current company.
Therefore, to sum it up, it would take time to rebuild the trust between you and your superior or colleagues if you decide to stay, so decide carefully.
2. Should you stay because of a pay rise?
A pay rise is considered to be the number one factor that makes people accept counter-offers. But, is it enough?
Why does your company offer you a pay rise only when you are about leave? Does it mean that you have been undervalued or underpaid by your company? You should be considering whether you could have been rewarded earlier for your job. Even with a pay rise right now, is this the amount you should be getting or could it be more?
From a business view point, it is indeed cheaper and time-saving to keep an existing employer rather than going through a long process to search for another suitable candidate and train him or her from scratch to take over your position. So, just keep that in mind. Getting a pay rise right now doesn't ensure that you will be treated fairly or better in the future.
3. Why did you want a job change in the first place?
While weighing the pros and cons of accepting a counter offer from your current employer, you must also remember the reasons that prompted you to seek for a job change in the first place. There are many reasons why one would like to change their job. For example, being underpaid, overworked, unsatisfied with the working culture, etc. While your counter-offer might include an increase in salary or more benefits, it’s unlikely to be a long-term solution unless the underlying issues that prompted you to leave in the first place can be addressed.
Changing your job is never easy. You would have to be willing to go through the whole process of job hunting again (all the research and preparation), not to mention multiple interviews to get to this point. Would you really want to give up your new role and environment to stay in the same company?nWhile a bigger pay cheque is definitely tempting, taking your time to consider your options will save you from regretting in a near few months. Asking yourself “why” is always important. If you have been looking forward to your new role and working in a new environment, these might be some good signs that it is a right choice to leave your current employer and make some changes. It's also perfectly fine to not feel guilty because of leaving your previous company, no matter how people might treat you for it.
In the end, you should do what's best for you.
With that said, we hope that this article helped you - hopefully the 'why' within you is a bit easier to answer.
In addition, if you're wondering how much certain industries and jobs in Japan on a yearly average, then this article may be of help and put things into perspective for you. Visit "The Average Salary of Different Occupations and Industries in Japan" and maybe use the information written there to bargain for a better salary. Good luck!
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