The Recruitment Underground Blog

Career Skills, Training and Transitions

So You Got An Offer, Then What?

Posted by jamesseetoo on November 13, 2009

I had a call from a friend the other day and he was in an interesting dilemma.  He’d just been offered a position but the compensation was around $5oK less than what he had been making.  So what to do?  After all, with the economy in this shape it’s scary to be out there with no pay check.  At the same time, when you’ve worked hard and been successful it can be tough to “take a step back” on the pay scale and there’s always the fear in the back of your mind that you’re going to be missing out on something more appropriate and well you might.

But when you think about any position there are going to be pros and cons and opportunities.  And I think the intangibles become much more important in this climate.  Now it must be said, my friend is a highly talented individual who has been incredibly successful in investment banking and so of course, he’s traditionally been highly compensated and this position is working internally in a company where the pay scales are just different.

And that’s where the intangibles come in.  As a consultant my friend could potentially make two are three times more than he would working in-house.  At the same time, there would always be a hole in his experience as people who work in-house have to deal with competing agendas both internally and externally while a consultant can concentrate on his client.

So it’s very important to think of your career in holistic terms.  It may not be a steady progression forward but might meander like the Mississippi River on its way to the Gulf of Mexico.  But the question you should always ask yourself is, “Are you going to benefit from this position?” and it may not be monetarily, at least immediately.

When I was recruiting at Life Technologies (Nasdaq: LIFE) people would often ask when I was going back into consulting.  One of the things I always said was, “My contact list isn’t full yet.”  Sure, I could have been making more money in consulting but I was getting an in-depth education in the biotechnology industry while helping to bring talent to a company that grew from $1.6 billion to $3.4 billion in revenue.  And during that time I gained a great deal of insight into how a large corporation works which was a better experience than I could have gotten in an MBA program.

And to top it all off, I made some lifelong friends there.  So sometimes going for the money is not the only thing.

Remember, your skills are your job security.


James Seetoo

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