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Learning, Sharing, and Teaching => Ask a Mustachian => Topic started by: dodojojo on September 24, 2013, 07:57:06 AM

Title: Stay put or jump?
Post by: dodojojo on September 24, 2013, 07:57:06 AM
I'll keep this brief...or try.

I'm a contractor at a huge global company.  The pay is only decent for the area but more than anything I have made in my mostly non-profit career.  The problem is that as a contractor, I do not receive any benefits and am only paid for the hours worked. So no holidays and vacations and anything like health, dental, is available but I pay a higher premium and no match for 401K.

I have an offer to join a small consulting firm to do what I currently do.  The offer would be as a fulltime employee--meaning the lush benefits package.  I anticipate the pay would remain the same or only slightly higher.

If it was only down to finances, I would jump.  But...I worry about the stability of my position at the small consulting firm.  I'm essentially joining to build up a new area of practice for them.  The partner heading this practice is in his late 60's.  And though we have had a good professional and genial personal relationship--I know he would throw me under the bus as soon as the shit hits the fan and that could happen if the practice doesn't take off.  As a consultant, I'd probably have to work much much more to bring in business at the 10-15% rate.  Currently, working in-house, we get 100% of most of our deals.

My current place is stringing me along with a promise to bring me on as a permanent employee but it's been over 3 months since the initial conversation.  Being slightly paranoid, I can't quite shake the feeling they are hedging their bets--that I'll stay as a contractor and waiting on the federal government (most of our business is from the federal government).

Further complication, I'm pretty sure my current manager knows or has an inkling I have an offer. It's a very small world in our line of business.  I don't want to get into the details but it's very incestous.

I know I should push the permanent employee issue with my current company.  But it's a sensitive area as I don't want to be too pushy ( a recent salary increase situation got a little touchy).  I want to appear committed to the job and they should have no hesitation bringing me on board.  On the other hand they may think that it's a sign that they can keep me on as a contractor without having to take on the cost of hiring me permanently.  But if I hint that I have a better offer may spur on the hiring process, but it could also mark me as someone not committed to the team and not worth hiring on permanently.

Title: Re: Stay put or jump?
Post by: jrhampt on September 24, 2013, 08:13:26 AM
It's been three months since you've brought it up, so they know you want a permanent position.  That commitment goes both ways - so far, they have been unwilling to commit to you.  I would absolutely schedule a meeting and tell your manager that you have an offer for a permanent position, but that your current company is your first choice.  Ask them if they can counter with a permanent job offer.  Don't hesitate to do this, just make sure that they know you want to work for them and become a full part of the team.
Title: Re: Stay put or jump?
Post by: dodojojo on September 24, 2013, 09:43:33 AM
I know I'm putting off the inevitable...just bring up the issue with my current manager.  At a certain point it has to happen.  I guess it's hard because the consulting job isn't a slam dunk which would make the decision easier.  I don't want to overplay my hand.
Title: Re: Stay put or jump?
Post by: catccc on September 24, 2013, 01:00:09 PM
How does your employment history look?  I guess I'm asking if it looks like you are a job hopper.  If not:

Ask again about permanent employment w/ your current employer.  If you don't get it, go for the new job.  They should not need to hear that you have a better offer elsewhere to give this to you.  But if the new job doesn't work out, you can try to find another job.  Don't burn any bridges.  Tell the current employer that you really wanted to stay with them but you could not, as a reasonably prudent person, pass up the benefits and permanent employment of the outside offer. 

Good luck!
Title: Re: Stay put or jump?
Post by: SunshineGirl on September 24, 2013, 02:58:18 PM
That's a tough spot to be in. I think you need to get an offer in hand from the smaller firm, and as part of your negotiating, make sure there is a severance package - the most complete, the better. If not, get a signing bonus that you can set aside for that day, if it comes.

When you have your offer in hand, go talk to your boss.

I don't feel there's job security anywhere these days, but larger firms often have stock purchase programs and good matching retirement offerings.