Although it’s slightly less stressful than having zero job leads, the process of picking between multiple offers can be rather difficult. There’s a lot to consider, and if you make the wrong move, you could find yourself stuck in a really bad situation.
The best you can do is make an informed decision, and in an insightful Business News Daily post titled “Career Confusion? 9 Tips for Choosing Between Job Offers,” writer Brittney Helmrich solicits advice from a series of career experts. They make some excellent points, and summarizing Helmrich’s first three tips, one key strategy is to go into the job-search process knowing what you want.
According to Helmrich, you should figure out your main priorities (money, stability, etc.), make a list of criteria, and “think about more than money,” as Adelphi University Center for Career Development director Thomas J. Ward says. That last one is crucial, as Ward insists that accepting a position purely for the paycheck can lead to “failure and disappointment.”
Helmrich’s next two tips center on determining whether you’ll be a good fit at a prospective company: “consider how you connect with the boss” and “look at the company’s culture.” Just as you don’t want to work for a manager who won’t show you respect and help you prosper in your new role, you want to steer clear of companies where you’re unlikely to fit in and mesh well with colleagues.
“If you are not happy at the organization, salary is not going to matter, and you most likely will not perform to the best of your ability,” says Husson University director of career services James Westhoff.
Being unhappy in the present is one thing, but it shouldn’t be your only concern. Helmrich’s next two tips are to “focus on your future” and “look for long-term satisfaction,” and that means thinking about whether the companies you’re considering will give you a chance to grow as an employee, take on challenging assignments, and basically carve out a place for yourself down the line. Can you see yourself sticking around for five or even 10 years?
Of course, that kind of sustained employment isn’t everyone’s gameplan, and that’s why Todd Rhoad, managing director at Bt Consulting, suggests you “think about your next job.” If you’re looking to get in, gain some valuable experience, and then jump ship for something better, make sure you’re focused on things like salary, title, and the number of people reporting directly to you, Rhoad says.
When all else fails, and you still can’t make up your mind, “buy yourself some time.” That’s the advice of Beyond vice president of marketing and member experience John Krautzel. When you’re contemplating one offer while waiting to hear back on another, Krautzel says, you should be honest with your prospective employers and ask for time to mull things over. You probably won’t get more than a week, but that might make the difference.