You’ve put in countless hours of preparing, searching, applying, and interviewing for jobs and internships. And now, your hard work has paid off because…you have multiple offers!
First, congratulations! Your dedication, persistence, and skill set have landed you in an enviable position. Having the ability to choose between two or more internships/jobs is a great situation to be in. However, it can also be stressful, as you have to weigh different options and, ultimately, choose just one. To engage in this process of comparison, keep these three tips in mind.
Identify criteria that are important to you
When comparing multiple job or internship offers, identify what criteria are important to you. The key word here is you. Different people have different priorities and what is important to one person may not be important to you. Think about things like salary and benefits, location of the position, overtime requirements, housing affordability, work atmosphere, chemistry with manager/colleagues, mission of the organization, and opportunities for professional development. While there may be some criteria that are important but not a deal breaker, there may be other criteria that you just can’t compromise on. This is okay. It’s normal to have a list of non-negotiables that you use to evaluate internship or job offers.
Get all your questions answered
Internship and job offers usually come with an ‘offer letter.’ This letter will likely come in the form of an email and employers will require you to review the details before officially accepting the role. If, after reading the offer letter, you still have questions about the position, you should ask your contact at the company. For instance, if it’s unclear how many vacation days you’ll receive, you can ask. If it’s unclear whether you have the ability to work remotely, you can ask. And, if you’re curious about opportunities for professional development, you can also ask about that. Getting all your questions answered isn’t bothersome or demanding. It’s an essential part of evaluating competing offers.
Remind yourself that you’ll have other positions
The decision to choose between multiple job or internship offers can feel like a big one. With this said, as you’re weighing the pros and cons, remember that the position you choose is not the position you will have for the rest of your life. It’s common for people to have several jobs over the course of their careers and for students to have several internships over the course of their college experience. While you may feel a lot of pressure in making a decision, try to remind yourself that this is just one of many opportunities you will have to grow your career.
After you have made a decision, be sure to communicate clearly and respectfully with each employer. Even though you may be turning down an offer, you can still maintain a positive relationship with the recruiter or company. You never know where your career may take you. So, building positive relationships is a good way to build a strong network.