Increasingly employers are using counteroffers to retain employees who have received an offer from another company. This is because of the shortage in the pool of talented candidates and because each employee that leaves a company takes with him a wealth of experiences and a network of contacts. If you are tempted by such an offer, consider the following:

  • Your new offer is from an employer who has seen your value only after spending a little time with you. Your old employer has been able to act for a long time but did not take action to keep you on by offering new opportunities or a vision for your future career path.
  • Do not forget that you will have to live with the potential consequences of accepting a counteroffer for the rest of your life. If you first accept an outside offer but then accept a counteroffer from your current employer, your trustworthiness will be compromised – also in the eyes of those who have proposed the counteroffer.


  • Discover your market value. Put yourself out on the market and apply for a position that could fulfill your career interests, have an initial interview, and find out if the potential employer values what you have to offer.
  • Give your current employer a chance. Talk to your boss, tell him or her that you are interested in a new role, salary increase etc. and give him or her the opportunity to come up with a proposal. There is no need to disclose your applications or talks with other employers, nor do you need to put your boss under pressure.
  • Make a firm decision. Based on the outcome of this conversation, make a definitive decision to stay or go. Only accept promises in writing and signed. If you are satisfied with this, inform the company that you have interviewed with that you do not want to continue the application process. If you are dissatisfied, continue assessing your opportunities outside the company.
  • Depart on good terms. If the decision has been made and you know you will leave the company, submit your resignation letter within the notice deadline stated in your current contract. In your letter, do not elaborate on the reasons for making this decision.
  • Close the door. Ask your employer to kindly respect your decision and that you do not wish to receive a counteroffer. This approach may also be the best way to persuade your employer to release you from your contract earlier than the official resignation date.