Never, Ever Fall For The Counteroffer

So, you finally made the decision to move on. It could have been for any one of a million reasons, but you made it. You wrote your resume, found a recruiter that you liked, and started your search. After a few interviews, you receive an offer. You accept, and agree to a start date 2 weeks down the road.

Now all that’s left to do is to write your resignation letter and deliver it to your manager. You’re floating. You knock on your manager’s door and ask him if he has a few minutes. You hand him the letter and politely tell him that you are resigning. He asks you what he can do to get you to stay. You hesitate. He asks you for details of your offer and suggests that he may be able to meet or exceed it. You pause for a moment, and begin asking some questions.

From the moment that you hesitated, you blew it. The only correct thing to do was to immediately say that while you enjoyed working for the company, that the decision is final.

Now here’s the list of reasons why you should never, ever fall for the counteroffer:

  1. Remember, there was a reason or reasons why you started looking in the first place. What in the counteroffer changes any of that?
  2. Your resignation letter was effectively an ultimatum to the company – pay up or I’m leaving. So now that they’ve paid up, they can begin looking for your replacement on their terms.
  3. Good luck with your next promotion within the company. In all likelihood, they will hold the counteroffer over your head for years to come (if you even last that long).
  4. I hope that you realize that you have just wasted a whole bunch of people’s time – from recruiters, to hiring managers, to HR, to administration staff, to your references, to the other candidates for the job. Not to mention the costs that your prospective employer went through performing background checks and employment verification. If you accept the counteroffer, you have probably burned a bridge with both the recruiter and the employer. Don’t expect either of them to welcome you into their offices ever again.
  5. You’ve just demonstrated to everyone involved that you did not think things through very thoroughly – that you are immature and inexperienced. That you are unreliable.

Remember, it takes a lifetime to build a reputation, and only a moment to tarnish it. So, before you even begin looking for a new job, make sure that you are fully committed to moving on, and that there is no way that you would accept a counteroffer.

For a good employer will be happy for you when they learn about your career move, and may even consider bringing you back at a position of higher responsibility sometime down the road.

Managing For Results, Not Time Spent Working

What should managers care the most about – the number of hours that their employees put in, or the results that they produce? In North America, the emphasis seems to be on getting employees to work more hours, with the assumption being that productivity will increase. But, will it?

Well, studies show that the optimal work week is – drum roll please – 40 hours!

Bring back the 40-hour work week

Stop Working More Than 40 Hours a Week

If you work in the area of software development, then you really need to read this post “Why Crunch Modes Doesn’t Work” from The International Game Developers Association.

And what is the impact on employees working more than 40 hours per week for an extended period? According to Business Insider stress, heart disease, hypertension, and depression, just to name a few.

America’s 55-hour work weeks ruin workers’ lives and don’t produce extra value for employers

The Importance of Human Resources to an Organization

How much does your President or CEO really know about your company’s Human Resources department? If they want to lead a great organization, then it pays to know a lot. Don’t just look upon HR as a regulatory requirement, look upon HR as a competitive advantage that best positions you to dominate your industry.

The best organizations have great HR departments, and great leaders that recognize this fact.

Businessweek – What Every CEO Needs to Know About HR

A Company is a Community, not a Machine.

Does your boss refer to the company as a factory? Does he treat the staff like they are robots? Does he desire to know exactly how you spend your day, or does he care about the results that you produce?

Great leaders take people to a better place. Their goal is for everyone on the team to have success.

“The best managers have a fundamentally different understanding of workplace, company, and team dynamics. See what they get right.”

Inc. – 8 Core Beliefs of Extraordinary Bosses

Make Sure That Your Team is Comprised of A and B Players

Let’s face it, some people are better workers than others. Just like it was in high school, people can be graded as A, B, C, and D players at work. It’s been said that in management, A players want to work with A+ players, and that B players want to work with C players.

You only want to have A players in management. If you accidentally promote or hire a B player to management, after a period of time you need to sit down with them and transition them to a non-management position if you cannot get them to raise their game.

Fire the D players swiftly. You don’t want any of them on your team at all. However, C players are a different story. You want them to become B players. Be fair to them; sit down and spell out exactly what your expectations of them are. Give them a reasonable chance to improve, working with HR to document the process. Let them know that B players are the minimum that your organization can tolerate and support. They will grow to become the backbone of your organization.

Forbes – Don’t Get Held Hostage to Bad Employees