Would you turn down a 30% pay raise? At the end of last month I did just that when I turned down an offer with an incredible pay raise to go to another firm. Why the hell would I do such a thing? Was this the right decision? How do you know which job is the right job?
Here’s what happened: At the beginning of February, a former boss of mine emailed me, sharing that she had recommended me to another company. Not only was I stoked to have someone in my network looking out for me, but a previous boss no less!
In following up with the recommendation, I went through the process of interviewing, learning about the demands of the position, and what additional responsibility the new position would entail. Shortly thereafter, I received an offer for more than I have ever earned before.
Which Job is the Right Job For Me?
Last month I wrote about Finding The Right Job, and developed a score sheet that would allow me to rate and compare various jobs. When a new opportunity comes across your path, it is hard not to get overwhelmed with excitement. One of the major benefits of this score sheet is to strip away those emotions and other less objective feelings when making a decision. Much like investing, emotions can cloud your judgment and sway you to make the wrong decision.
With that in mind, I pulled out my score sheet, and rated both my current position and the new opportunity for each criterion. My filled-out score sheet is below:
The Right Job – Turning Down a 30% Raise - Score Sheet
As you can see above, the new job doesn’t significantly come out ahead when compared to my current position. While the new opportunity fulfilled more of my desired job characteristics, ultimately those and the increase of pay did not outweigh the benefits of position longevity and the sacrifice of a great personality fit. As a note, longevity was a bit over weighted for me as I’ve been at my current job for less than a year and rapid job hopping can be perceived negatively.
The Right Job Must Have: Personality Fit
Too often people ignore the personality of those around them. When comparing a position, the personality criterion should almost be counted twice. As I talked about in my first post, working with people you like and mesh with is very important.
Currently, I work in a larger office setting and my immediate team is a great group of people with laid back personalities. We fit and work very well together. With the new position, I would be transitioning to a small office of less than 20, where the personality fit is extremely important. Additionally, my role there would be executive level, requiring an extra emphasis on the personality fit with the other executives.
Of course, it goes without saying that I could absolutely end up regretting this decision! I just gave up more than six figures in additional income over the course of the next five years. As a numbers guy, and someone who is very focused on increasing and developing increased streams of income, this was the hardest decision I’ve ever made in my professional career.
Have you had to make a job decision recently? What did you find important when deciding on the right job?