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How to reject job offers politely without affecting future prospectus...

 
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Hi folks,

I got frustrated in my current job due to too much of politics being played by some folks and I had put my papers and started searching for job..Now I have 5 offers in hand...Most of the interviews happened simultaneously and I wasn't too sure about the work culture and other things related to the companies..So I deferred my final decision till I get all the offers...Now I will have to choose 1 offer and politely decline other companies offer..How to do I go about doing it in a diplomatic manner..I know my decision will piss of some HR folks..I want to ensure that my future prospectus with the companies are not affected by my decision..How do I go about doing it..What excuse will sound convincing to HR managers..Please do let me know what you feel would be an ideal approach..
 
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Why would you invent an excuse? Tell the truth: You want to pursue another offer. Unless you made it sound to the HR person that their offer was the only one you were considering and you would accept no matter what, it would be unprofessional for them to take it personally.
 
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It's indeed remarkable that you have 5 offers in this economic condition, I think you can simply decide which one you'd like to take up and inform others that you wouldn't be able to join at this time. Keep it as short & polite as possible and don't give name of the company that you're joining. Good luck!

- Manish
 
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Write a concise, reasonable reply. Thank them for their offer and tell them you are unable to accept it at this point in time since you found another that had better career prospects. Its not necessary that you tell them the exact reason. All that they need to know is that you are not joining them because something in the offer that they made fell short of your expectations.

Some HR departments will call you to find out the exact reason. Try to be as vague as possible.
 
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If there were several simultaneous offers, surely you can tell them the offers all came through at the same time.
 
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Dear Chucklehead,

I'm accepting a job offer... but not with you.

Kiss off!
<your name here>




But if that's a little to brief, I'd suggest:


To X,

Thank you for your job offer of Y. I was very fortunate to have 5 offers from which to choose. It was a tough decision but ultimately I decided to take a role doing Z. <optional reason why> I was quite impressed by your company and would like to keep in touch as our needs may intersect again. If you need help filling the role I have some colleagues who I think would excel in such a position.

Again, thank you for your time and offer.

Sincerely,
<name>
<contact info>




What this does (or similar emails) is:
* Decline politely
* Set you up as a man in demand
* Open the door to keep in touch and build a relationship (ping this person every 6 months--put it on your calendar)
* Help your friends find a role
* Help the HR person with his work, making him want to help you in the future
* Provide your contact info (email, cell, skype, home address, linkedin profile, etc.)

I think you should mention the job description but not the company. You may choose why to mention why specifically you took the other job. For example, if it was objective and changeable (e.g. salary, benefits) telling them this politely will let them know what to fix and help the industry as a whole as it creates upward wage pressure. If it's something subjective (e.g. culture) or not changeable (e.g. longer commute) mentioning it will not make any impact and they may think this issue will prevent you from accepting a future job offer.

--Mark
 
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I think there is no harm in saying that you don't want long commute/ frequent travel/ whatever other difficult to change element of the job description. On the contrary, it may prevent them from bugging you with similar unsuitable propositions in the future.
 
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I think it's a good thing you do not want to insult HR managers, but how many times do we as employees get impolite rejections from HR managers? Ok now actually that s not your question, I know. But nevertheless.

On topic. Just say you already have accepted another offer. They don't hold that against you. From my experience you can, a few years later, apply to the same company again. I did that. That s my present experience here in the Netherlands Amsterdam area.
 
Marcel Wentink
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Edvins Reisons wrote:I think there is no harm in saying that you don't want long commute/ frequent travel/ whatever other difficult to change element of the job description. On the contrary, it may prevent them from bugging you with similar unsuitable propositions in the future.



No, don't do that. Say in a few years you want to apply again to that company, they will ask why your former objection is not valid anymore. If they remember. Just say you are accepting another offer. Simple and nuetral.
 
Edvins Reisons
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I agree that one does not need to explain reasons in a rejection email/letter (simply because it's less work to do ). However, one can gain from communicating one's constraints and preferences, and this can be done long before receiving offers. For example, when recruiters call me and start talking about a job in a neighboring town 60 km away, I tell them immediately that I am not going to commute there.
 
Rambo Prasad
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Thanks a lot for all your input..
 
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What should be done if the HR calls you and asks for the name of the company where you plan to join ?
 
Campbell Ritchie
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HR have no business knowing whose offer you are accepting. They have probably got no business asking in the first place, so something slightly humorous but uninformative, maybe?
I would say, "Now that's a leading question!" but customs probably differ in different countries.
 
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