A counteroffer letter to challenge the terms an employer has offered for employment is a bold move. If you have a habit of being vague and passive, writing a counteroffer letter is not for you. Counteroffer letters must be direct, specific and assertive. You must know your worth and ask for what you want. Remember, the company wouldn't have put the offer on the table if they didn't want your skills and expertise. But don't go overboard; your potential employer can always exercise his option to hire someone else if your demands exceed his resources.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Challenging
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Type the letter. Show you're taking the offer seriously.
Head the letter formally. Include your name, address and telephone number at the top of letter, either to the left or in the middle, using resume formatting. To the left, a few spaces below, type your prospective employer's name, title, company name and address, in paragraph form. A few spaces down from that, to the left, address the letter using the title you've been told to use. If his name is John Meyer but he asked you to call him John, address the letter "Dear John." If he hasn't expressed a preference, address the recipient by his last name.
Express appreciation for the job offer, and your inclination to accept. Express optimism about your future with the company. For example, "Thank you for offering me the position of head writer. I would love to accept and I envision creating many rewarding projects for your company."
Bring in the "but". For example, "However, there are a few specific terms of the offer I'd like to alter."
Be specific about what you're requesting with your counteroffer. List each subject of the offer separately. Next to each subject, type the company's initial offer, your counter offer and your reasoning. For example, "Salary: I appreciate your offer of £78,000 and 2 per cent stock ownership, however the median annual salary of someone with my skills and expertise is £87,750 annually. If you raise the annual salary to £82,550 and make my stock ownership 5 per cent, I'll gladly accept the position."
Leave room to negotiate. Keep your offer slightly higher than for which you're willing to settle. That way your employer has room to lower your offer, while leaving you room to get what you really want.
Don't go crazy. Your potential employer will not negotiate much higher than his initial offer. If you ask for too much, he might decide to go with someone else. If the offer isn't even in the range of what you're willing to accept, turn the offer down and try your luck elsewhere.
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