As you go through the thought process of deciding whether or not to accept an offer or even if you are not at that stage but simply entertaining the thought of moving on for greener pastures, consider that this is one of the best times to reflect on what is really important to you in terms of your career and life. There are a number of possible factors which can be important to you: compensation, location, balance in life, peer relationship development and a whether or not you can leverage a role later on either in the company or outside of the company.
All of these factors are not equal. Aging parents, children in high school and other life circumstances can mean that you need to balance your work life with personal commitments. Compensation is always a good driver, but sometimes not the overriding factor.
Whatever your considerations are however, you should go beyond drawing the proverbial line down the middle of the paper and listing the pros and cons of a role. You should weight your considerations because frankly, some things are worth more than other and you don’t want to be in a position a year from now of finding yourself in a role that doesn’t meet your needs.
First Step: In terms of pulling out the paper and moving to concrete steps, list what is important to you on the left. Assign a weight on some scale, say 1-10 where 10 is the most important to you and 1 is the least important. Add up the weights for a total possible score.
Second Step: When evaluating an offer/your current situation, rank the components of the offer/situation relative to the weights. For example if you weight “money” as an 8 and the offer you receive meets those needs, rank the offer an 8. If you weight “no travel” as a 7 and the offer you receive requires you to travel more than you want, you can rank the offer for that category a 5 etc. Add up those scores.
Third Step: Divide the offer score by the total possible score for a percentage. If the role ranks 80% or better, you may consider that a good offer…..or you may not. Perhaps you may be looking for a 90% or 95%. It’s up to you.
Sometimes circumstances dictate our likelihood that we have to change our situation, sometimes our situation meet our needs. Whatever the case is, this is a good way quantify and/or re-evaluate every few years in terms of what is important to you and use that as a base line. Best wishes!