Evaluating a job offer: 6 steps to consider
After spending a year or two tied to your books, case studies, and presentation notes, you’ve finally earned that MBA you’ve been striving for. So what next?
Knowing that you’ve received numerous job offers is flattering and just what you’ve been aiming for as a graduation goal. High salaries, intriguing benefit packages, and fancy titles are tempting you like a free tropical holiday, so how do you choose between these seemingly exceptional jobs?
- Function: Ideally you’ll use the skills you developed in business school to produce personal success and company improvement. And hopefully you’ll gain even more skills, either through formal training or on-the-job experiences, to add to your skills bank. Accordingly, make sure your new role is challenging, as nothing leads to career static like a boring job that seems elementary, especially if you’ve just completed an MBA. Take into account if and how the prospective role will evolve and whether you’ll have the opportunity to strengthen the role or even gain access to a higher position from ‘mastering’ the position’s demands.
- Location: Choosing a city that has good economic, social, and cultural benefits can be harder than you think. Keep in mind that if you are a consultant or banker you may not have much time for social or extracurricular events in your first year or two after graduation, so you may consider choosing a city you feel won’t be your permanent home, if the career benefits are there. If you feel you will be working long hours, find accommodation near your workplace to avoid long, tiring commutes.
- Environment: Good working relationships are key to career success. Try to get a sense of your boss’ work habits and if possible, meet your potential colleagues. Mike Holmes, Recruitment Expert at QS Global Workplace explains, ‘Try and arrange to meet some of your colleagues, either in a work or social environment. Can you see yourself working with these people? Do you think you will enjoy working with them? It does not have to be positive, however if it is negative, perhaps you should reconsider!’
- Career Prospects:Mike Holmes discusses the importance of creating the right career path: ‘Make this job an excellent stepping stone; look at where you want to get to over the next 3-5 years and your long-term career aims. Put some milestones down so your career path looks manageable and realistically achievable.’
- Company values:Does the corporate culture reflect your personal and professional values and goals? Do they uphold the highest standards of ethical practice? Is the staff diverse? If you value hard work between the hours of 9 and 5 and the company values 24-hour dedication, you may decide its standards are not in sync with your own. Furthermore, many companies, especially online businesses, encourage team proactivity and a happy working environment. Google, for example, has an onsite gym, restaurant, and even sofas and dogs in some locations. Experts say this could be the reason why Google now ranks second in Fortune 100’s Top 100 MBA Employers 2006.
- Salary and Benefits:Make sure to consider company benefits such as bonuses, as what seems like a low salary quite easily could end up being a higher salary than offered for a similar position at a different company. Furthermore, it goes without saying that evaluating purchasing power in the country in which you intend to work is essential. You’d be surprised what a seemingly small amount of money can get you in some countries. And finally, while salary is very important, it shouldn’t be the be-all-end-all of job selection: ‘Always place a financial figure against the development and lifestyle opportunities that are available to you in both jobs,’ advises Peter Fennah, Director of the Career Development Service at the Cranfield School of Management. ‘At this point, you will find enough revealin g information to make an informed decision along with your gut instinct.’
Source: QS TopMBA.com
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