Imagine: You’ve accepted a job offer, and almost immediately after doing so, you regret your decision. Perhaps you were laid off soon after being hired. Maybe the employer rescinded promises that were initially made. Maybe you disliked your job responsibilities or work environment. Or perhaps you just didn’t get along with your supervisor or co-workers.
For many people, these hypothetical situations are a reality. Accepting the wrong job offer is a common mistake people make in the world of work, particularly when they’ve been unemployed for several months or are frustrated with their current employer.
According to Marcia Heroux Pounds, author of the recently released book “I Found a Job!,” job seekers shouldn’t let desperation pressure them into jobs that are a poor fit. To help job seekers make a confident and informed decision about whether to accept a job offer, Pounds offers the following advice:
- Remember your values: Before accepting a new job, think about what’s important to you and assess how well you believe the employer will live up to your standards.
- Do your research: Use the Internet and talk to others to achieve a better understanding of the potential employer. Doing so will help you spot red flags that may indicate that a particular job is not as secure or rewarding as it initially seems.
- Go with your gut: Your instincts play a major role in giving you the green light to accept a job offer. On paper an offer may look fantastic, but if you can’t shake a funny feeling that the job isn’t right for you, there’s a good chance it isn’t.
- Take the long view: Keep in mind that salary isn’t the only factor you should consider. Are there health benefits, a 401(k) or other retirement plans? Can you expect an annual bonus? Will your employment package work with the relative cost of living where you’ll reside? Ask these important questions before accepting an offer.
- Ask for the opinion of someone else: Discuss the offer with your spouse, partner, parents, mentor or a good friend to get their perspectives. You can be too close to the situation or too emotional and may not think of asking for something doable in the compensation package.