How to Graciously Decline an Offer

Posted October 14, 2014 by Abby McDonald in Career Moves
So you’re comfortable in your current job.  Recruiters have been stalking you on a daily basis, dazzling, shinier, opportunities to you, with more money, more perks, lots of upward mobility and so you decide to give it a whirl.

You listen intently to what they’ve got to say and you’re thinking “Why the heck not?”

You’ve been in your position for some time now, you’ve met and exceeded your job requirements, you make a good living, but you wouldn’t mind making more money, I mean who doesn’t, right?

And so you think to yourself that perhaps a change of scenery, wouldn’t be so bad after all.

So off you go, interviewing your brains out, building a momentum and finally a breakthrough happens and you’re flooded with offers.

What’s a Career Girl to do?

Here’s 4 points to consider before you take the plunge:

  1. The 80/20 Rule: We’ve all heard about the 80/20 rule in relationships, well it also applies to your career, in that, you don’t want to be dazzled  solely by the 20%, or more specifically, by your immediate wants and ignore your needs.  For example, although money IS important, it shouldn’t be the main, motivating factor for leaving your position.  You want to make sure that 80% of this golden, opportunity meets the needs of what you deem as a fulfilling, career.  Making a decision on the 20% often gives you a temporary high and leads to dissatisfaction.
  2. Identify your “Main thing” or your “Why”: Your main thing, is your motivator for leaving your current position.  This motivator, is intrinsically linked to the things that you deem sacred in your life, that makes your career enjoyable, challenging and fulfilling.  When examining your golden opportunity, ask yourself if it fully utilizes your talents and skills to the fullest.  If it meets this criteria, then it’s probably a good move.
  3. Timing is Everything: Being approached by recruiters, on a regular basis, can become quite flattering, however, you want to be very objective when making your decision.  Timing is everything, I cannot stress this enough.  You’ll find that some of the most successful, people in the world, will tell you that they’ve said No more to opportunities, than Yes.  And, the reason being is that they are so crystal, clear on the vision that they have for themselves, so they are very strategic in their decision making.  If it doesn’t feel like it’s the right time, then maybe it’s not.  Always remember that there will always be other opportunities.
  4. Trust your Gut: And then of course there’s the good old “gut” feeling that you have when something feels fantastic, or it’s a total flop.  For example, does the opportunity feel expansive?  Or, does it feel constrictive?  If it excites and invigorates you, it’s probably a good fit, however, if you feel overwhelmed with anxiety and you just can’t visualize yourself thriving in this new position, then you’re best bet is to decline.

Review these fundamentals in the face of career temptation, and you’ll become a pro at graciously, declining opportunities until the right one arrives.


About the Author

Abby McDonald

Abby McDonald knows what it’s like to live life fiercely and courageously. She started out her Career in the Financial Services Industry 17 years ago with the intent of becoming a Trader only to be fired to her dismay. Through a lot of soul searching she stumbled upon the Executive Search business 13 years ago, while successfully running her own firm for the past 6 years called Dynamic Synergy Group Inc. Abby McDonald has coached and interviewed many people over the years and has developed a love and passion for helping women to discover who they “Really Are” in both their Life & Career. Her latest business venture is www.talkwithabby.com a spiritually infused, inspirational site offering Life & Career coaching services as well as providing a platform for Advice for those who seek it.