It certainly feels great to know you have choices of which job you want next. Company A wants you and Company B wants you. It is a great position to be in. So, what are the best ways to choose between multiple job offers that will benefit your career? And how do you protect your relationship with the company you did not choose?
Here are ways to help you make the best of a great situation.
1. Look beyond perks
Perks in the forms of coffee kitchens and pizza nights do not pay bills. When it comes to deciding which job offer you will choose, aim for the one that helps you support your health and your financial situation. Things like health insurance and dental will save you a ton of money over the course of a year, especially given the rising costs of healthcare in the USA.
Also, choose the job that appears to offer a peace of mind. Do you think the company will be a toxic work environment or one that will leave you feeling inspired? Jobs that are mentally and physically taxing on the mind and body will do more harm to you than good over the course of a career.
The last thing you want is a job that offers medical and dental benefits because you will need them after a couple of years on the job due to the behavior of the company. Make sure you get as much information about your job responsibilities and who you will work with. Be as detailed as possible and then answer the question, “Is this the right job for me?”
2. What job offers the most opportunity for career growth?
Career growth can come in many forms, be it in education, financial, or title. However, times are changing faster than ever before. It used to be that if you were hired at a company, you stayed there for your entire career or changed jobs maybe two or three times. In the 21st century, the average number of times people change jobs is between 10 to 15. While employed employees devote their time and energy to preparing for their next career move.
With that being said, you will ideally want a job that is progressive and preparing you for a career transition. So, education and position growth will tend to matter more than financial growth. Accepting a job that will be automated to death in 5 years because it pays well now is a career move that could hurt you.
If you are not learning and growing in your job right now, the chances are in a few years your career will stall or demand you start taking new business courses. In the US job market, the older an employee gets the less likely they are to be paid more if they are not learning new skills and growing.
Some do manage to hold onto jobs for an entire career, but the reality is the majority of these jobs are becoming a thing of the past. If you have hit the glass ceiling in your company already it may be time for a change. If you have a few job offers on the table aim for the one that will provide you with career growth for the next five years and help you eventually move on to bigger and better jobs.
3. Which job is one you actually want to see yourself advancing in?
An interview question that used to come up often was, “Where do you see yourself in 5 years?” Even though the question does not seem to be asked as much anymore (probably because of point #2), you should be asking yourself, “Do I want to advance my career here over the next 5 years?”
Why? Working at a company and succeeding within that company is great. But what do you do if the company has a notoriously bad reputation? To give you an example, imagine you worked for and grew your career at a company that was bailed out by the US Government in 2008.
Before that happened, you were steadily promoted, educated, and saw financial gains from your hard work. Then suddenly, you are laid off and start your job search at a time when your most recent experience is at the very company everyone is holding a grudge against.
Before choosing a job, do your best to make sure the ethics and morals of a company are aligned with your own. The last thing you want to do is grow your career at a company you dislike but agreed to work for anyway. When you interview for a new job, eventually you have to be proud of the company you just worked for and it is easier to do that when you respect them.
4. Did you like the people you met during the hiring process?
It is not silly or emotional to say this. If you did not like the people you met during the hiring process, then you should not be working for the company regardless of what it offers.
Think about it: You are going to spend 40+ hours with these people during the week. You have to collaborate with them and share ideas with them. How do you think your job will turn out when you do not even like the people you work with?
When you have job offers on the table, make sure you like the people you are interviewing with. By nature, when we “connect” with people in-person there is a sense that anything can be achieved. When you start to feel like you are managing personalities, achieving anything becomes a chore and eventually, you will end up resenting someone or something who disagreed with you. Don’t ignore your gut instinct when you think you’d be happier working with one group of people over another.
Protecting your relationship with both companies
If you are in a position where multiple job offers arise, always be sure to let the other company down politely. Emails written like this, “Sorry, you did not offer enough” are a mistake. Instead, as a job candidate you get to write your version of a rejection letter like this:
Thank you so much for the offer for the **** position. I appreciate you taking the time to consider me and for answering so many of my questions about the company and role.
After much consideration and thought, I have decided to accept a position at another company.
It was a pleasure to meet all of you and I hope we can stay in touch if future opportunities to work together present themselves..
Over the course of your career, this is a great way to establish connections that help your career and network flourish!