Countering the counter-offer: why sometimes the grass really is greener

12 months ago Maria Tapis

Lauren Blog

​While working in an internal recruitment role, Lauren Pocknell longed for the consultancy environment she’d previously enjoyed at a large staffing firm. And then Investigo came calling. Yet after she was offered a position with us, Lauren received a counter-offer from her employer – and accepted. She soon wished she hadn’t. Knowing external recruitment was where she really wanted to be and at last deciding to work for Investigo, Lauren tells us why you should be wary of accepting a counter-offer.

Why did you want to move on from your role in internal recruitment?

There was nothing wrong with my current company. Internal recruitment was awesome but it didn’t have the same rewards or buzz as agency recruitment. I decided I wanted to go back to 360 recruitment and make a fresh start at a good, established company. Once I got the thought in my head to move on, I don’t think there was a way back. That feeling of “what if” will make you less productive over time.

Why did you initially reject the offer from Investigo?

There were a number of reasons. I was worried about upsetting my current boss and about what people might think or say. There was also the fear of starting something new: new probation period, new colleagues, new team.

I had stability too. I knew my last company and I was comfortable there – maybe a bit too comfortable. I told too many people that I was thinking of leaving and I ended up getting such conflicting advice – some saying “stay where you are” and others saying “go for it” – that I didn’t know what to do. Half of them didn’t even work in recruitment. I suddenly felt embarrassed to leave. When my employer made the counter-offer, I decided to stay.

In the end you made the right decision and came to Investigo. What would you advise candidates to do if they receive a counter-offer?

If a manager offers you more money when you say you’re going to leave, for me that’s a kick in the teeth. They’ve always clearly had that money in their budget, so why didn’t they value you that highly in the first place?

Trust will be broken. The manager will always remember that you wanted to leave, no matter how much they say they will not. It’s better to leave on good terms and just cut your losses rather than stringing it on until the next time you get headhunted or something upsets you.

At the end of the day, accepting the counter-offer might keep you happy for a short time, but ultimately it won’t take away the reasons you wanted to leave in the first place.

What would your advice be to someone considering the move into a new recruitment position?

Don’t ask too many people – listen to your gut first. Put together a pros and cons list and when you do speak to your close family and friends, tell them your decision rather than asking their advice.

Go for it – challenge yourself! I’ve done two deals in six weeks already and that’s with the Christmas break. My manager has been an absolute gem and offered me so much support.

If you’re worried about making the move, be honest with your potential new line manager. Tell them your concerns and get a better idea about whether you’re compatible with the role.

Honestly, what’s the worst that can happen? If you work hard and trust your ability, then go for it.

What’s different about Investigo?

You’re always out and about on meetings and putting together regular business plans – which I’ve never done before, but really helps you focus. You feel like an entrepreneur and you take ownership of your market.

There’s no micromanagement. The onus is on you to do what you need to do. Investigo has the most supportive managers – hands-off, helpful and human. You can talk to them about anything.

Then there’s the commission. I was not in a commission-based role and with Investigo’s lucrative scheme, I wanted a piece of that. That said, there will be a point where your happiness and career progression will outweigh the finances, and only you know when that point comes. Luckily for me,  Investigo’s got those covered too.