Not all jobs are created equal, which is why you shouldn’t feel obligated to accept every offer that comes your way. If taking the job means the difference between living on the street and keeping your house, that’s one thing, but if your situation enables you to be picky, career advisors say to do so. After all, despite what employers may have you think, there are real reasons to turn down a job. Here’s a look at four:
In this job environment many people are just happy to get a job and don’t give too much thought to the impact it can have on their future career. If the job is outside of your career path or you’ll have less responsibility than your current or previous job, career experts say that may be a reason to turn down the offer. “You run the risk of taking a detour in your career path,” says Pamela Skillings, co-founder of job coaching firm Skillful Communications. You have to think how will this affect your future prospects and the next opportunity and if it hurts, think long and hard before accepting the job, she says. “Can you articulate how this job is an improvement on your last job and how it will bring you closer to your long term goals,” adds Mark Jaffe, president of executive search firm Wyatt & Jaffe. “Are you acquiring new skills or tools or are you given increased responsibilities and the opportunity to make a big difference.”
2. The only appealing thing is the money
Money talks but satisfaction over a killer salary will only last so long, so if money is the only good thing about a job offer, you may want to reconsider accepting the position. “Money by itself is the worst reason to take a job unless you are starving,” says Jaffe. “Do it for the money and you are playing deaf, dumb and blind to everything else.” According to Jaffe if you take a job solely because of the money you’ll probably only be able to endure it for a period of time. It isn’t a way to build a successful career.
On the flip side, if you take a job that you are being underpaid for, that too can lead to resentment and bitterness. “If you feel like you are accepting something way below market rate or feel like you are working too many hours, it can definitely take a toll,” says Skilings. “It can be dangerous to accept something you feel is way beneath you.”
3. You don’t respect the boss
Great companies share one thing in common, great leaders. People want to work for someone that inspires them and someone they can respect. If you don’t respect or like the person you will be working for then that’s an extremely good reason to turn down the job. Not only will the lack of respect make work less than pleasant, but it will also wear on your own self-respect. “If you don’t respect the person how many directives, decrees and instruction will you take before it starts to wear you down,” says Jaffe.
Same goes for the culture of the company. Skilling says to be on the lookout for toxic work environments and if you get that vibe it’s a good idea to run for the hills. “A bad manager can make even a good job a nightmare,” says Skillings. “You have to carefully evaluate if you can work with the person every day.” Telltale signs the company may have a culture problem is if there are high turnover rates and employees with short tenures at the company.
4. You’re embarrassed to work there
People take pride in the companies they work for. After all, your career does become an extension of you. If you aren’t proud of the organization that offered you a job or your embarrassed to tell your friends and family you work there you may want to think twice before accepting the position. “If it’s low prestige it’s a warning sign,” says Jaffe. Even if it’s a high status job, if it’s in a company you’re ashamed to be associated with, then your tenure there will likely be short lived. According to Jaffe the firm’s culture and values have to be aligned with your values in order for it to be a success. For instance an environmentally conscience person isn’t likely to be happy working for an oil company just like a person who is against guns isn’t going to be fulfilled as an employee of the NRA.