Friday, March 23, 2012

Counter-Offer: The substance over form

     Most resignation letter have a common parting words "irrevocable resignation".  And the fun part of this - a great number of it can also be revoked.  Well, let's face it, resigning from a certain job is one of the hardest thing to do.  We will stop seeing everyday the people that we have valued & colleagues that became our friends  and the other great opportunities within the organization will also cease.  This is always true even if we have the valid reasons to leave.

     Behind those valid reasons to leave, there are also  good grounds to stay.  Sometimes, a pat on a shoulder or a sincere conversation can be just enough to stay.  I can attest to this when a well-respected person have stopped me from transferring to another department.  You know, my respect and trust to that person and love for the colleagues are the good grounds for me to stay more patiently in the same department. I was counted on, afterall.

     But when the above ways are not as efficient anymore, the company will give an option - the COUNTER-OFFER. I'm not an expert in assessing a good counter-offer but I will be sharing to you  how I qualify things.

1.  Timing & consequences - When was it offered? A week after you tender your resignation or at your last few days?  If the company (HR/Boss) already have negotiated your extended stay then, it implies that they are already letting you go. But if after the acceptance of such, they talked to you again for another option, however great it can be, assess the sincerity of the offer.  Being happy at work cannot equates any monetary value.

2. Sincerity - Why you are being offered with such? Is it really a recognition of your value to the company?  Or they have recognized a less competent replacement and having you again will prevent failures? This is the most important factor  to me.  It is the point of regaining trust or losing it.  A good offer should recognize why are you resigning at the first place and work on compromising (or conceding) it.  Having a prepared (new) contract during informal  meeting without previous conversation or confirmation about the offer will only show a ONE-WAY communication.

3.  Actual Value - Wacky as it may sound, but I actually did my SWOT Analysis for the counter offer (SWOT = Strength, Weakness, Opportunity and Threat). I look deeper to SUBSTANCE OVER FORM. Aside from SWOT, assess the monetary value of the offer.  With your new rate, will you still receive the same benefits like Overtime Pay?  If being offered as consultant, you will also lose all the statutory benefits (Employer's share on SSS, Insurance, etc.). What is stated in the contract, is it what is being offered (i.e. responsibility, etc.)?  Another thing, people normally accumulate leave credits during employment. Will you still earn leave credits? What about the savings on tax rates? Compute the financial equivalent of these lost benefits vs the counter-offer.  How long will the new engagement would be? You must always value a long-term engagement, too.

     When I received the counter-offer, I didn't give my answer right away.  I asked for a day to assess various factors as stated above. I am overwhelmed blurrily perhaps, so I need to go out the circle and look what's inside. But before doing that,  I asked for God's guidance with the decision that I am about to give. Honestly, the REALIZATION came more vividly to me after.

     With the particular counter-offer that I got, I left the office that day with positive answer, went to church to seek for guidance, got home with a probable negative answer, computed the actual value and slept with negative answer.  I am truly grateful that I have declined the offer. ;-)


  1. Ano na ang balita? Work ka pa din with Ate Mel? ;)

  2. maybe you could come and join me Scarlet Wednesday is now up... see you there!

  3. I think I'm gonna need that SWOT Analysis soon!


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