A reader writes:
I applied for two jobs. I accepted the first job and then declined the offer and accepted the other. The one I accepted was closer to home and every other Monday I would have off. Unfortunately, the other job did not offer this.
Now I feel as though I should have taken the other job because I am not happy. I have to deal with a person who has a serious attitude. At first I thought it was me, but people were telling me that this has been going on before I got here, and it seems unfair to me to come into a situation like this. The staff tells me to hang in there — she is looking for another job, but this has been going on before I got here and I have only been here for one month.
I am ready to call the other company and see if the job is still available and see if they would take me back. The job is not what I anticipated. What should I do?
Seriously? The other employer isn’t going to re-extend their offer to you. Let’s review: You accepted an offer from the first company and then later reneged because you thought you had a better offer. When you accepted that first offer, the company cut loose their other applicants and started putting time and money into preparing for you. When you then decided to back out, you did what’s called “screwing them over.” I can pretty much guarantee that you’re blacklisted with them at this point.
Of course they won’t accept you back. And why should they, when you’ve shown you’ll walk away at the slightest hint of a better offer, before you’ve even started?
What if this company had made you an offer, you had quit your job in preparation, and then they called you back and told you that they’d changed their mind because they found a candidate they liked better? (And yes, I know that occasionally some unprofessional company does this. It’s just as jerky when the employer does it. It’s jerky regardless.)
Frankly, my advice is to stick it out where you are. Not only should you not try appealing to the first company, but you shouldn’t start looking for other jobs either, since you’re only one month into your current position. Otherwise instead of having one black mark against you in your industry, you’ll have two — one for reneging on a job acceptance and one for quitting just a few months in.
I’m sorry to sound harsh, but your letter reeks of self-entitlement and a lack of understanding of the commitment you make when you accept a job. Eventually that kind of behavior will harm you professionally, if it hasn’t already. Cut it out.