Managing Multiple Offers Got You Down?
By Erika Osmundson, AgCareers.com Marketing & Communications Manager
Why is it that a good thing, like having multiple job offers to choose from, can be so stressful? Perhaps it is because selecting the RIGHT one can be difficult. There are so many things to consider and each offer seems to provide something slightly unique. While considering multiple job offers relies heavily on personal reflection, here is a little advice from a trusted student career advisor, Beka Crocket from Colorado State University, to help guide you along the way.
EO: Why is deciding between multiple offers so stressful?
BC: Receiving multiple offers is stressful because graduates want to ensure that they pick the “right” opportunity, and that is hard to know. Also, many people feel a sense of loyalty to a company based on prior experiences and there is fear that if they pick wrong they will be burning bridges. Rest assured that companies expect you to have multiple offers if they know you are a good candidate and want you to pick the right one for you!
EO: Are there things students can do now to help them prepare for evaluating multiple offers?
BC: First-know your bare bones budget when you enter the world of work. Chances are there are several things that you will have to pay for that you haven’t had to in the past. Then elevate one level because people should have more entertainment and luxury options as a young professional than as a student or person in training.
ADVICE FROM THE COMPANY:
If you’re in a position where you have the luxury to select from multiple job offers, choose the opportunity that aligns most closely with your values and passion. A job where your passion aligns to the purpose of the position will offer you greater personal satisfaction and financial rewards in the long run.
Tim Fossen – Christensen Farms
While everyone has an ideal wage in mind, you have to realize that not all offers have wiggle room. If the offer presented to you is in the range of what is deemed appropriate for a person coming out of school, then the chances for negotiation may be limited. However, if the wage seems off, then it does not hurt to ask. You may have a better chance at negotiating things like relocation, etc. In general, it is ok to ask, just don’t be disappointed if the organization is unable to meet your demands.
Jennifer Struck – DuPont
Second-know your top five geographic ideals. Even if you don’t get to start in one of your top five, does the company have the potential to get you to an ideal geographic location over time?
Third-know your workplace values-does the company have a reputation for stability, growth, professional development, pay advances, telecommuting, flexibility, profit shares, paid time off, etc whatever is important to you do they offer that, talk about it in the interview process.EO: Are there factors that students should consider that often go overlooked but are important?
BC: Most often the factors that go overlooked are the workplace values and motivated work skills. Young professionals often get so excited by dollar signs that they overlook some details which include company fit, the ability to use motivated skills and a company whose values mesh with them as a person. These are all items that I encourage people to ask about in an interview, read how people on LinkedIn are describing the work that they do, and the recommendations that people are giving.
EO: Can a young professional ask for more time to make their decision and what is the best way to do so?
BC: It is absolutely ok to ask for more time so long as it is reasonable. For example, let’s say week 1 you interview with company A and week 2 you interview with company B. On week 3 company A gives you an offer but you anticipate an offer from company B in the coming days that you’d liked to consider. It is ok to say, “I really appreciate this offer and I am so excited about what you have shared with me about your company and I look forward to being a potential contributor. I am wondering if I may have four more days to consider your offer as I am weighing several options and want to ensure that I make the most informed decision for myself in preparing for my next steps.” If a company says “No” or gives you an “exploding” offer then a young professional really needs to decide if that company is a good fit for them.
EO: As a graduating student, can an offer be negotiated? If so, what is the best approach?
BC: As a professional, new or seasoned, it is always in your best interest to negotiate unless the salary, benefits, and work contexts are your absolute ideal. The most flexible thing to negotiate is salary. However, first you have to do your homework and know what a reasonable salary is. Great resources exist such as O*Net, Glassdoor, and Career Services on campus to provide you with a reasonable baseline salary. Then if you have experience you can advocate for even more than the baseline.