While counter-offers may be tempting and even flattering, there can be pitfalls that you need to be aware of. Ask yourself these questions:
- Why weren’t you valuable enough to receive the salary / promotion yesterday?
- Will your loyalty always be in question?
- If there are future cutbacks, will you be the first to go because of concerns about your loyalty?
- If you accept the counter-offer for more money, are you just giving your employer the time they need to locate and select your replacement?
- Will your career track remain blocked if you accept it?
- Will your responsibilities be expanded?
- Will you have to report to a person you don’t respect?
- Will you receive next year’s raise or bonus early?
- Is the counter-offer a ploy to avoid a short-term inconvenience by your employer?
- What are your realistic chances for promotions now that you have considered leaving?
According to national surveys of employees that accept counter-offers, 50-80 percent voluntarily leave their employer within six months of accepting the counter-offer because of unkept promises. The majority of the balance of employees that accept counter-offers involuntarily leave their current employers within twelve months of accepting the counter-offer (terminated, fired, laid off, etc.).
As attractive as counter-offers may appear, they greatly decrease your chances of achieving your career potential.