*Looking for a new job is stressful enough, but once you find an opportunity, making those final considerations about whether to accept the job or decline it brings on an entirely new array of stressors.
Is the salary enough? Should you try to negotiate more and exactly how much more? Is there a good benefits package?
While these are all things you should consider before accepting a job offer, here are three additional considerations you should make before signing on the dotted line.
Can You Afford to Live Comfortably with the Offered Salary?
Look past the specific number that you are being offered and consider how your current expenses will change if you accept the job. This is especially crucial if accepting the position requires a move to a new city. For instance, if the new opportunity is in New York and you currently live is a much smaller city, the dramatic increase in cost of living could dwarf what had seemed like a much higher salary.
Start by running the numbers of your current monthly expenses and the increased costs in the new city by using a cost of living calculator and try to negotiate a higher salary. If the salary is firm and the new job is worth some sacrifice to your current lifestyle, try to negotiate some other benefits to help mitigate the costs.
For instance, you could ask for relocation assistance if you plan to find an affordable apartment in the NYC metro area and possibly even cover some of your moving expenses.
Is It a Good Fit?
The right job is about so much more than a specific position’s day-to-day responsibilities. To start, evaluate the office vibe and the overall company culture. Do they mesh well with your personality and what you’re looking for?
For instance, if you prefer the structure and traditional elements of a formal office setting, working at an ultra-casual internet company may not be a good fit for you. Or conversely, if you consider wearing a tie torture, a job at that big high-powered law firm may not be so enjoyable for you in the long run.
You also need to consider how your role fits into the company’s overall structure so that you can determine if there is room for growth. Ideally, you should be confident that this role will help you reach bigger career goals, either within the company or elsewhere in your industry.
When it comes to the organizational structure, it’s also helpful to request introductions to a few managers above your direct manager. For instance, in the event that your manager leaves the company, it’s helpful to know if a management change will help or hurt your career path within the company.
How Will the Job Affect Your Quality of Life?
Does this new job require an hour commute each way? Does the position require longer hours that will deplete your current work-life balance? These elements all affect your overall quality of life, and while they may not seem like a big deal now, they could contribute to job dissatisfaction within just a few months.
Take a realistic look at how this new job will change your life, making a list of all of the pros and cons. In some cases, it’s worth making a long commute if the job will provide the experience you need to get to the next level in your career. Or perhaps a job with long hours and a big paycheck doesn’t actually mean much to you if you don’t have any time to enjoy the fruits of your labor and spend time with your family and friends.
Your work is a large part of your life. Therefore, it’s important to consider these factors when coming to a decision about a job. After all, they could be the difference between stress and satisfaction.