By: Eugene Moore
Q: How should I go about declining an offer?
A: Although looking for a prospective job can cause a high level of anxiety, declining an offer can be equally stressful. If you are strategic in your approach, you can minimize these challenges. Often, in fear of not landing a job, applicants will send large number of job or internship applications in the hope that they are afforded one or more opportunities. It’s good to apply to multiple places and to keep your options open, but mass-applying is something that should be avoided, as it can create the stress of having to decline multiple offers that might not have interested you in the first place. To avoid this, seek opportunities not out of desperation, but because you have thoroughly researched the companies and believe you are an ideal candidate.
Imagine you have followed these suggestions and find yourself with three offers from companies that you admire: how do you decide which to accept and which to decline? However you decide, you should inform the companies in a professional and timely manner. For example, you can say, "After much consideration, I have decided to not accept the position as I have accepted a position with another company." More often than not, the company will respect your decision.
Before you accept or decline an offer, make an effort to negotiate any details that might sway your decision. Once you have officially accepted a position, your ability to negotiate vanishes and you must suspend your job search. Although receiving an offer is exciting, it is best to be careful when declining offers, and to understand the entire process to ensure you act professionally.
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