In a competitive job market, young job seekers are often advised not to be too picky when it comes to accepting job offers. However, there may be instances when you have mixed feelings about a particular job offer and it could very well be in your best interest to pass on the offer if one of the following signs (red flags!) arise.
1. Negative reviews of the company or its employees cast a bad light or corporate information is not widely available online. Persistent negative reviews signal concerns about the work culture at a particular organisation. Another legitimate cause for concern is where the company website is often under maintenance or the corporate information appears to be outdated. A company which does not have industry presence lacks credibility.
2. Your prospective employer was unreliable or disrespectful. If prospective employers constantly cancel or postpone interview appointments, rude during the interview process or even if the interviewer hesitates in answering your questions about the work environment and prospects of career advancement, then you may need to trust your instincts and turn down the offer as these are merely signs of more serious issues, for example, an inconsistent company culture and a high turnover rate.
3. The company culture is not the right fit. Organisational goals, the management structure and work environment constitutes company culture. Not all company culture will be the right fit for you. For example, a startup company atmosphere where the work environment tends to be casual might not work for those who have a more conventional outlook.
4. Lack of benefits that promote a work-life balance. Remuneration isn’t just about your monthly salary. Beyond basic employee benefits such as medical insurance, dental allowance or retirement saving schemes, other fringe benefits such as gym membership or telecommuting privileges promote a better work-life balance.
5. The prospective position compels you to compromise your personal or career goals. It is important to determine your basic must-haves in a job, for example, flexibility, a specific or even related industry, etc. This way when a job offer comes along, you can assess if the prospective position has all or most of the characteristics you are looking for. Accepting a job offer and then forcing yourself to fit the job may not be beneficial in the long run!