I Quit! Actually I need a Raise…

I never try to discourage candidates from getting the very best compensation package they can negotiate. Really! I want every candidate that my firm works with to get THE best overall salary, bonus and other perks available to them. Period. What I take issue with is how some candidates choose to get what they want at the expense of others involved.

It’s the classic scenario where the candidate is very much engaged in the search process, shows up for all of the requisite interviews and completes each and every task along the way that we require as part of our search process. I mean we really invest a significant amount of time in vetting candidates and do whatever we can to ensure that we have demonstrated all of the reasons we feel a particular candidate is qualified and should be seriously considered for the job. The offer finally makes its way to me and before I send the offer to a candidate I always present a verbal offer to make sure I communicate all of the details verbally in advance of just sending the document via e-mail or overnight mail. It gives me a chance to gauge the candidate’s reaction to the offer and their immediate response is usually a fairly good indicator of their willingness to accept the offer – or not.

What drives me insane is once we (all) go through a fairly lengthy process to naturally bring things to closure something strange happens. A conversation might go something like this:

“Tim, I appreciate everything you have done for me in this search but I need more time to think this over”. “You appreciate the time…WHAT? Think what over? Later, I find out that behind the scenes, Mr. or Ms. Wonderful decided to take things into their own hands and use my offer to gain a better deal in their current company by resigning their current role. Now that’s a bit slimy…

My clients invest serious cycles in a search process and so do we! We go though all of this and this happens? Are you kidding me? Yes – it does happen (although it’s rare). Just when you figure it out what’s happened – you realize that the candidate is on the verge of making a major career mistake that will haunt them as long as they work for their current company. Once a candidate decides to use another offer to resign and have their current employer come back with a better deal – the game (for them) is over.

What they may not understand is that once they resign they have sent a loud signal to their employer that they must be very unhappy to go to this extreme. Also, they are no longer considered to be a loyal employee and their actions will definitely have an impact on their career moving forward. Yes…this includes promotions and raises! Most savvy employers will wish them well and never give into this sort of financial blackmail. Just wish them well – but show them the door!

The probability for those that resign and then decide to stay is very high that they will leave (or be asked to leave) within a year or so anyway. This charade is a colossal waste of time for all parties involved. It hurts just writing about it!

Can we change the subject now? Thank you!