In an ideal world, you’d accept immediately because it’s your dream job at a company you’re intimately familiar with.
From the hiring perspective, however, we often forget that the person we want for the job doesn’t know what the day-to-day is actually like. We don’t know if they’ll get along with their colleagues. We often don’t mention the perks, we just think you’d do good work.
Before you say yes to the dress offer, here are some things you should think about:
The stats are startling: if you stay in a job for more than 2 years, you could be making as little as 50% of what you’re worth. To combat this trend, many employers offer continuing education to help you continue your growth inside the company rather than taking your experience elsewhere. When you factor in the cost of replacing someone, it makes good financial sense to keep that institutional knowledge in-house.
It may seem gauche to ask about opportunities like this while you’re in the interview phase, when contemplating taking a job it’s important to have all available information so you can balance it against opportunities you’re already provided. If you’re doing the same job but lack advancement avenues, then it might not be the right move. Knowledge is power, and that’s something we’ll keep coming back to.
Where you’ll be Working
You might have had a casual, cursory tour of your new workspace, but now you have the chance to dig in. Think of it like a home inspection. During the first evaluation, you’re seeing if you like it. But, when you’re making an offer, you darn sure want to know that the roof doesn’t leak and the foundation is secure. As a future employee, you should ensure that the place you’re going to work meets your needs.
Do you prefer an open-plan office to cube walls? Do you need quiet to do your best work? It’s best to get in and learn about the environment, first-hand. How much time is dedicated to meetings and how much to creative work? Are there communal areas, stand-up desks, or couches? Do you want those things? Dig around to find out if the place really meets your needs.
Who you’ll Working With
It seems easy, when the question is asked, to respond that you love teamwork. Who is on that team, however can certainly influence how much you like teamwork.
Pieces of a team need to work well together, and if those parts aren’t involved in the interview process then they should be your first stop before accepting the job. It’s as much about personality connections as it is ensuring that skills align to needs.
If you’re able, talk with some of your future colleagues. Get a sense of how they really view the place. Even if it’s a post-work drink, some honest feedback on the strengths and needs of the business can be extremely useful in making your decision.
What are the Benefits?
Don’t ask about leave and fringe benefits during the interview process. Asking if lunch is catered every day doesn’t matter (at that stage). Ultimately, the perks won’t matter if you love your job. But if it’s an opportunity that you’re ambivalent about, some good perks can push it over the edge.
Are they the perks you need, though? If you’re childless, does free crèche matter? Will the perks help you keep a work-life balance? Honestly assess your needs and determine if these provide value for you.
Do you Want the Job?
When you’re out-of-work, the first offer you get can take a weight from your shoulders. Rather than jumping feet-first in to a bad situation, think about how you’ll feel about it in a week, month, and year. Some businesses give you a lot of leeway, others prefer to keep you locked in to a routine. Some like taking suggestions, others tell you how it’s going to be.
You can talk yourself in to being happy in the short-term, but if it’s not going to be a positive work environment. No job is worth being miserable over.
What are some good or bad experiences you’ve had in the job-offer process, as both an employer and employee? Share in the comments below!