How To Lose a Job Offer Without Even Trying


By Randy Quarin, Toronto Communications & Technology Recruiter

You believe you’re perfect for the job and, after a terrific interview, the employer seems to agree. So you’re in the final stages of the screening process and it seems like you’ve got the new job in the bag. But hold on, don’t get ahead of yourself yet. There are still things that could cause the employer to rethink making you an offer. Here’s what NOT to do:

Ask for too much time to think it over.

A few days are reasonable … more than a week is not. If you ask for too much time, you run the risk of not appearing enthusiastic and that you’re hoping to receive a better offer somewhere else.

Expect an unrealistic salary. 

Before you go into the interview, you should have researched how much this particular position pays. Or your recruiter has told you the salary range. Be realistic about the marketplace and what the industry standard is for this size of employer and the area. Over-the-top salary demands make you appear out of touch with an inflated sense of your own worth.

Lie … about anything.

Lying about aspects of your career, salary or references can come back and bite you. Many job offers are contingent on all of your information checking out. So you could lose the position even after being hired. Make sure all of your references are people who will say positive things about you as many employers will shy away if your references don’t provide a glowing review of your work.Job Offer

Spring a significant demand at the last minute.

If you’re hoping to work from home part of the time, or want flex hours to accommodate a long commute or childcare issues, this should be discussed earlier on in the process.

Play hard to get.

Unless you truly are hot stuff and potential employers are vying with each other to woo you away, playing hard to get will make you appear uninterested – not more desirable. If a company calls saying they’d like to make an offer, get back to them promptly to discuss it. If they make an offer but you’re waiting to hear back from other employers, tell them you’d like some time to make sure it’s the right choice for you and your situation.

Forget to send a thank-you note.

Didn’t your mother always tell you to send thank-you notes? It’s a simple gesture but one that could make a difference if the search has beenHow to lose a job offer narrowed down to a few candidates. Send a well-written letter expressing your interest in the position and thank them for taking their time to meet with you.

Be rude to other employees.

You probably won’t just be working with your boss, so treat everyone in the company with respect. Ignoring the receptionist or junior staff and just being polite to the manager is not wise as most managers listen to the opinions of all their employees. A simple “he (or she) is not very friendly” could send up a red flag.

Brag on social media.

Put down the smart phone and step away from Facebook and Twitter for the moment. Comments like “nailed my interview” and “they’re so going to hire me” are best said in person … not for the world, and your potential new employer, to see.

(If you get the job, you may want to check our post How To Start A New Job On The Right Foot. )

IQ PARTNERS is an Executive Search & Recruitment firm with offices in Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver. We help companies hire better, hire less & retain more. We have teams of specialist recruiters in Financial Services & Insurance, Marketing Communications & Media, Emerging Tech & Telecom, Consumer Goods & Retail, B2B & Industrial, Technology, Accounting & Finance, HR & Operations, Energy, Mining & Engineering, Life Sciences, and Construction, Property & Real Estate. IQ PARTNERS has its head office in Toronto and operates internationally via Aravati Global Search Network. Click here to view current job openings and to register with us.