Conventional wisdom argues against taking a counteroffer from your current organization. Why? Typically, if you are seeking out a new job it is because there are larger problems that exist within your job duties, your team, or at an organizational level.
Accepting a counteroffer to stay, even a competitive one, doesn’t solve any of these issues and signals to management that you are a flight risk. However, as companies are desperate to hire and retain technical talent, lucrative counteroffers are tempting to accept.
Do you want a new job or more money?
Everyone will always accept more money. But is that the real motivation behind your decision to explore other jobs? Determining what is fueling your discontent will help you to manage your expectations and understand your motivations.
Define your motivations.
Company or Team Culture – Every job will have difficult managers or frustrating politics. However, if you are working in a micromanaged environment or toxic culture where you cannot directly influence change, a counteroffer won’t ease your dissatisfaction.
Skills – Is your skillset dwindling in an environment where you aren’t working with modern tech languages? Lack of challenge leads to lack of interest and the potential to fall behind peers as new technologies emerge.
Policies or Work-Life Balance – Will more money make ever-changing remote polices, commuting time, or after-hours availability tolerable?
Increased Cost of Living – Cost of living; including housing expenses, healthcare, mass transit costs, and gas prices have tightened budgets across the board. Determine if, and how much these cost increases are affecting you.
Is this a pay raise conversation?
If your motivation is financial, asking for a pay raise may be the right move. Requesting additional compensation can be difficult and uncomfortable, but it is the more appropriate conversation to have. If your only goal is to trigger a counteroffer, it is potentially risky and time consuming to interview just for offers to take back to your manager.