If you are one of the lucky few to experience the situation in your career of having multiple positions offered to you at the same time, there are several factors to take into account to ensure that you handle the situation professionally, fairly, and ethically. In our attempts to procure the right position, we always utilize all opportunities that are presented to us as job seekers. We may apply and interview for many positions for months before finding the position that is a perfect for our skills and personality. Occasionally, after interviewing with several organizations, multiple job offers become part of the scenario. Following a few simple guidelines can ensure that you create a winning situation for yourself.
Be honest. All companies should give you a day or two to consider their offer. Many times it is advantageous to you as the prospective employee to be honest and let them know that you are considering a few offers and that you need a reasonable amount of time to take all of your options into consideration.
Do take the time to consider all options. You should never accept one position “just in case” and then decline it as soon as the position that you really want is offered to you. There are a myriad of actions that an employer takes when someone accepts a position. It would negatively impact the employer and be highly unethical to allow them to order your business cards, pay for your training seminars, and close the recruitment process by notifying all the other candidates that the position has been filled when you really plan to accept another position.
Ask for all job offers in writing. Any employer that is serious about the employment offer should present a formal written offer of employment even if it is via e-mail. Ask that the offer include additional information such as bonus information, insurance options, and of course the salary to ensure that everything you discussed in the interview will be approved by management.
Ask about the corporate culture of the organization. Are they extremely on-point and task driven at all times or does the company have a progressive and relaxed atmosphere? Do they tend to support the employee’s professional development with training, seminars, and certifications or are they a just “put the widget together and clock out” type of company? You have to make an honest determination as to which environment you would most likely be successful in and take that into consideration above and beyond the salary and insurance options. It may be more beneficial for you to accept a position with a little bit lower salary if the environment is conducive to your ultimate happiness and success.
Be positive without the arrogance. There are diplomatic options available when negotiating salary or benefits with an organization. Don’t demand or play games with employers to get what you want, because it will likely result in you losing the offer all together.