After scaling through the whole hassle of crafting an attention-grabbing cover letter, optimizing your CV, searching, applying and acing the interview like a pro, you have now been made a job offer. Congratulations.
At this moment, it is easy for anyone to quickly accept the offer, considering the high rate of joblessness in the country and what you might have gone through to arrive at this stage.
You must be thinking “Emma, who wouldn’t accept”, right?
A few years back, I remember accepting a job offer of N20,000 as a young accountant. Just like you, I was also eager to escape the rat race of unemployment. I didn’t consider any other thing. All I wanted was to leave home in the morning.
So, I accepted the job offer. But a few months into the job, I became restless and frustrated. Alas, what I accepted wasn’t exactly what I really wanted for myself. There were no opportunities to learn or develop myself. Nothing else but a job and a salary.
The place was so disorganized; everybody was carefree and answerable to no one. On the contrary, I was that young man who was eager to take instructions, be held accountable for something, learn cooperate ethics, principles and become better in my field.
I was also the only graduate in the firm and the rest of the staff were secondary school leavers who were practically picked up by the owner of the firm because he didn’t want to incur more expenses in employee remuneration.
I was tired. Nothing new was learned from the job or anyone. My salary was practically spent on transportation with a few kobos left to buy Gala and Lacasera on my way back. This was definitely not the right place for me. So, you see? I understand your eagerness and I can boldly say I have been there and have done that.
So before you accept that offer, I advise you to pause, breathe in and carefully consider what is on the table. You have got to ask yourself some seemingly simple but important questions before you can joyfully sign or reject your new contract.
These questions will not only help you make a better decision. But will definitely ensure your career success and keep you happier while the job lasts.
Having said that, without further ado, let’s dive straight into the four important questions you should ask yourself before you accept that job offer:
Will This Job Help Me Achieve My Goals?
Unless you are actually looking for something to keep you busy, pay the bills or just for you to leave home in the morning like I did years back, then you should overlook this question.
However, if you want something more and you desire to build an amazing career, if you hope to climb the corporate ladder faster and you have goals you have mapped out to achieve this year – both personally and career-wise, then you need to ask and answer this question. Be honest about your goals in view and how working with this firm will help you achieve them.
Ask yourself: how can this job help me achieve or even surpass my goals? Are there opportunities working with these firm will avail me? If yes, how do these opportunities relate to my goals and how should I start positioning myself for them?
Is It Easy For Me to Fit into this Company Culture?
I understand that as a result of the high rate of unemployment and the struggle to join the workforce, a lot of young professionals – especially entry-level talents – do not give a damn if they are a good fit for jobs or the company they applied to. The struggle has caused most of you to think you can fit anywhere – no matter the culture, ethic, and work environment. This isn’t so.
There are some work environments that you can fit and thrive in effortlessly. There are also some that would keep you frustrated for the rest of your day on the job. So, you have got to observe and find out what the company culture looks like, their style, atmosphere in place, principles and ethics. Then decide for yourself if it is what you can cope and easily adapt to.
Will This Job Help Me Grow?
Growth! That’s what most of us want at every stage of our lives. I believe that’s what you want too. But often, we neglect or treat this all-important topic with little sense of urgency when it comes to making career and job decisions.
This is the reason most people have been spinning at a spot all year round like a stuck car wheel. Because nothing is happening! You are not getting better! There are no opportunities that would help you harness your skills and potential.
You are becoming obsolete because your skills are not effectively utilized. You are not getting better on skills you have already gotten. If this job does not offer you more opportunities to hone your skills, then your response should be a big no.
To avoid being stagnant, you have to find out if the company encourages the eagerness to grow and career advancement among its staff. If they do promote staff development, how exactly is that done? Is it through in-house training, travel opportunities, etc?
How Much Is In For Me In This Offer?
I know someone is about to say ”it is not all about the money” but before you do that, let me tell you for free: “It is all about the money”. However, if you still think it’s not about money, then this article isn’t for you and you should probably consider volunteering for an NGO.
Personally, I think we should earn more for the value and solutions we bring to the table. So, one of my goals this year is to up-skill my knowledge base which will, in turn, raise my earning. And because of that, I think you should always ask yourself what’s in it for you. Don’t you agree with me?
So take a good look at the money and other benefits that might come across your way when you work for this firm. Is it what you want? Would it be enough to pay the bill and give you a decent lifestyle?
Compare it with your previous earnings. If that was the reason you left your last job. Is it better or worse than it? Or is it worse? If it is worse, then it is time to put on your negotiation skill and negotiate your way to that 7 figure salary you truly deserve. You can check out my article on salary negotiation, it would be of help to help you up your negotiation game.
Do you have any career challenges or questions? Kindly share them with me.