GOOD READS

How to Juggle Multiple Job Offers

A job offer is usually welcome news--unless it comes while you're waiting to hear about a different job you really want with a different employer.

While many job-seekers might see this as a good problem to have, it's a tough spot to be in. And most job-seekers aren't sure how to navigate it well. After all, can you put the first company off, and if so, for how long? What should you say to the first company in the meantime? And can you take the offer but rescind your acceptance later if the other job comes through?

The first step here is to call the company that made you the job offer. We'll call it, "Company A." Explain that you're very interested in the job and would like some time to think it over, and ask when they need to hear back from you. Any reasonable employer will give you a bit of time--generally a few days to a week. Be aware, though, that many employers will balk at giving more time than that. Especially since a request for more than a week tends to signal that you're hoping for an offer from somewhere else in the interim and will make them question your interest level.

Next, contact the other company (Company B) immediately. Don't delay by even a day--time is crucial here. Explain to them that you have an offer from another company, that you need to give them an answer quickly, and that Company B is your first choice. If Company B is strongly interested in you, there's a good chance that they'll be willing to expedite things.

However, Company B might tell you that they can't speed up their timeline. If that happens, then you have a difficult decision to make: Are you willing to turn down Company A's offer without any guarantee that you'd get an offer from Company B in the future? Your answer probably depends on your financial situation and how confident you feel about other prospects coming along.

But what you shouldn't do is accept Company A's offer with the intention of backing out of it later if Company B comes through. Company A will have turned their other candidates loose by that point, as well as invested time and money in preparing for your arrival, so reneging on your acceptance would burn that bridge to a crisp. You'd also risk damaging your reputation in your industry, because people talk and you never know when that will come back to haunt you. Assume that once you accept an offer, you'll need to keep your word.

In other words, do what you can to expedite things, but know that you might need to decide if you're willing to end up without any job offers to see the process through with your favored company.

Alison Green writes the popular Ask a Manager blog, where she dispenses advice on career, job search, and management issues. She's also the co-author of Managing to Change the World: The Nonprofit Manager's Guide to Getting Results, and former chief of staff of a successful nonprofit organization, where she oversaw day-to-day staff management, hiring, firing, and employee development.



More From US News & World Report

Quiz: How well do you know India's economy?

Question 1

Which of these products is India the world's largest producer of?

Poll Choice Options
  • Wheat
  • Rice
  • Milk
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10

Latest News

  • Infotech's net up by 15 percent

    Hyderabad, April 24 (IANS) Infotech enterprises, a Hyderabad-based engineering solutions provider, Thursday said its net profit during 2013-14 stood at Rs.266 crore, an increase of 15 percent over last fiscal. Infotech chairman B.V.R. Mohan Reddy told reporters that the firm registered a revenue of Rs.595 crore in the quarter ended March 31, a growth of 28 percent year-on-year. We are very confident that this momentum will continue during the current financial year (FY 2014-15)," said Mohan …

  • India may witness below normal monsoon rainfall

    New Delhi, April 24 (IANS) India is likely to witness below average monsoon rainfall in 2014 that will affect farm output and economic growth, the government's weather office said Thursday. Rainfall during the 2014 monsoon season (June to September) averaged over the country as a whole is likely to be 88 percent with a margin for error of plus or minus five percent of long period average, according to data released by the India Meteorological Department and Earth System Science Organization …

  • 69 percent cyber attacks targeted at large companies in India: Report

    New Delhi, April 24 (IANS) Despite stepped up information security measures, businesses in India continue to be an attractive target for cybercriminals with as many as 69 percent targeted attacks being focused on large enterprises, a report said here Thursday. In India, cyber criminals are unrelenting in their focus on large enterprises with a staggering 69 percent targeted attacks carried out against them. "Despite stepping up their information security measures, businesses in India continue …

  • IGIA to become zero-diversionary by October: Committee

    New Delhi, April 24 (IANS) The Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA) is set to become a zero-diversionary airport by October as the government is set to implement the recommendations set out by an expert committee which was formed to look into the matter. According to the Civil Aviation Ministry, in a meeting held Thursday with all stakeholders including India Meteorological Department (IMD), Airports Authority of India (AAI), Delhi International Airport Pvt Ltd (DIAL), Bureau of Civil …

  • Air India seeks to lease 14 Airbus A320 aircraft

    Air India Ltd [AIN.UL] is seeking to lease 14 Airbus A320 aircraft, according to a tender document posted on the state-run carrier's website. Air India has asked for bids for up to six-year-old A320 aircraft ... …

IN-DEPTH ANALYSIS & INTERVIEWS

  • Too good to be true?

    Developers are offering lucrative buyback schemes. But such promises may not be always kept. …

  • Leaderspeak with Vikram Limaye

    Vikram Limaye MD & CEO, IDFC Ltd shares many firsts from his life. …

  • Appy Voting

    Mobile and online apps, seeking to inform or influence voters, have been more active than ever before in this election. …

  • In the crosshairs

    Why the future of FDI in multi-brand retail looks bleak after the polls. …

  • Deserving the honour

    How do the winners of the two new banking licences - microfinance lender Bandhan Financial Services and infra institution IDFC Ltd - measure up to the challenges of operating as full-fledged banks? …

  • A Samurai from Chandigarh

    Advertising veteran Sandeep Goyal is disarmingly frank as he recounts his years with Dentsu. …

  • Falling in line

    Global investors gear up to working with Narendra Modi despite reservations about his secular credentials. …

MARKET MOVERS

  • Most Actives
    Most Actives
    NamePriceChange% Chg
    16.52-0.33-1.96%
    UNITECH.BO
    14.31-0.27-1.85%
    SUZLON.BO
    120.40+7.00+6.17%
    FRL.BO
    66.05+4.10+6.62%
    MANGCHEM.BO
    54.40+1.65+3.13%
    HCLINFO.BO
  • Price % Gainers
    Price % Gainers
    NamePriceChange% Chg
    16.20+2.70+20.00%
    JAGSONPH.BO
    53.50+8.90+19.96%
    RUSHIL.BO
    40.45+6.45+18.97%
    RCIIND.BO
    63.95+8.90+16.17%
    MRPL.BO
    24.00+3.10+14.83%
    NELCAST.BO
  • Price % Losers
    Price % Losers
    NamePriceChange% Chg
    10.95-10.95-100.00%
    4THGEN.BO
    17.30-17.30-100.00%
    ALFAICA.BO
    16.81-16.81-100.00%
    AMAL.BO
    11.73-11.73-100.00%
    BORAX.BO
    29.95-29.95-100.00%
    BRADYM.BO
  •  
    Recent Quotes
    Symbol Price Change % ChgChart 
    Your most recently viewed tickers will automatically show up here if you type a ticker in the "Enter symbol/company" at the bottom of this module.
    You need to enable your browser cookies to view your most recent quotes.
  • Recent Quotes News

    •  
      Sign-in to view quotes in your portfolios.