Answer These Three Questions Before Turning Down That Job Offer

Nancy Anderson
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After spending a long time searching for jobs, it can be thrilling to receive a job offer. Sometimes, however, you may feel a job offer is not right for you. In these cases, you have a difficult decision to make. Should you decline the job offer and continue your job search or accept the offer and give the job a chance?

When deciding whether to accept or decline a job offer, it can be helpful to ask yourself a few questions. The following questions can help you process your feelings about the job offer and decide whether it is right for you.

1. What's holding you back from accepting the job offer?

Some of the issues that might prevent you from accepting a job may be negotiable. For example, if the job has a lower salary than you were hoping for, you may be able to negotiate a higher rate of pay. On the other hand, an issue such as not liking the person you have to report to may be less easy to resolve.

2. Does the job move you closer to your career goals?

Think about the career goals you want to achieve within the next year or two, and determine whether or not the job you were offered fits into your plan. For example, you may want to secure a specific position at a company, launch your own business or save for a deposit on a new home. Will this job move you closer to your goal? It's always a good idea to accept a job that gives you the skills, experiences or resources you need to achieve your goals.

3. Are you excited about the role you've been offered?

During a job search, you might tell yourself that emotions don't matter, but that's not necessarily true. How you feel about a certain position, industry or potential colleague can be a good indication of whether or not you're making the right move. If you're excited about taking on a new challenge but doubting yourself due to nerves, that's often a good indication that you should move forward. On the other hand, if you dread the thought of going to the job day after day or working with a specific person, that's a good sign that the job is probably not for you. A job you're passionate about is more likely to make you happy than a job that pays well, so don't be too quick to dismiss your feelings when deciding whether to accept or decline a job offer.

If you ask yourself these three questions and decide the job you've been offered isn't right for you, let the employer know your decision as soon as possible. There's nothing wrong with deciding to decline a job offer, as long as you handle the situation politely and professionally.

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