Your job search and interview skills have paid off big time and you’ve now got multiple job offers in your inbox. While multiple offers sounds like a dream scenario, it can be quite stressful, especially for first-time job seekers. Friends and family are quick to share their opinions on what the clear right option is, but the “right job” for you will depend on a number of factors, some that might be easily overlooked.
Money isn’t the most important thing
Comparing salaries is the easiest place to begin when deciding between multiple offers, but Rachel Kim, career strategist and coach at SoFi, says basing your decision on money alone is a mistake. Taking money off the table forces you to dig deeper and decide what it is that you really want. “Think through the aspects of the job responsibilities and career goal alignment that you were hoping for when you started the search,” she says. Sure, money makes a difference, but it’s important to weigh all aspects of the position; from the entire compensation package including vacation time to the skills and experience you’ll derive that can help you to further your career.
Is it the right “fit”?
Finding a job that “fits” means you have to be clear on what motivates you and what your purpose is. “Career success often comes from finding a job where “you’re connecting with your intrinsic motivators; where you’re using and growing those skills you want to keep growing, where the purpose of your work and how you add value is clear, where you feel like you belong,” says Kim. Being clear on your purpose and values will make you more likely to perform better in your job, and that can lead to promotions and larger salaries in the long run.
Career growth potential
Evaluate each position based on the skills that you will have the opportunity to practice and learn, the experiences you will gain, and the network you will grow. Consider whether there is a clear path to success and growth within the organization. Is the company growing? Are there opportunities for learning and development to improve your long-term career advancement? All of these should factor into your decision.
Who will be your direct manager?
Your manager plays a major role in your career success. When evaluating a job offer, ask yourself whether your new boss is someone you will be able to learn from and whether you will enjoy working with this person. A Gallop poll of over 1 million U.S. workers found that 75% of people who quit their jobs did so because of their bosses and not the position itself. “In evaluating your potential manager, you’d want to learn about their management style, their decision-making process, what qualities they like in direct reports, what a successful manager/employee relationship looks like from their perspective,” says Kim. Looking back on your interviews, ask yourself if there was one manager that stood out that you would most enjoy working for.
Consider your exit plan
“Your long-term vision should help guide you to make the best decisions in the short term,” says Kim. These days, it’s unrealistic to think that you’ll remain with one company for your entire career. Ask yourself where you want to be in five, 10, or 15 years, and what you will need to get there. What skills and experience will you need? Who will you need to have in your network? Then weigh each job offer, taking into consideration what doors each position will be able to do for you, who you will be able to surround yourself with, and whether the experience you will gain will set you up for success when it’s time to move on.
Celebrate your decision
It’s easy to start second guessing yourself as soon as you submit your letter of acceptance. This is why it’s important to take your time in making a decision so you can evaluate each carefully and ensure that the decision you make is one that you will be comfortable with. Once you’ve made the decision, avoid second guessing and celebrate the fact that you are embarking on a new step in your career.