Can I approach my employer and tell them that I got an offer from another employer and if they are willing to make me a counter offer in order to get a raise and make me stay?

The point is this is a made up story and I'd like to see if my employer is willing to give me a raise and this way I can explore my options further. I noticed if people are more harsh with my employer the company is more willing to negotiate.

Or how does it work? Do I need a prove that I got an offer from someone else? This isn't a try to mess with my employer or put a burden on his shoulders. The company is doing well but underpaying many employees lately.

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    I don't think this is a duplicate, because the OP is asking about making up an offer and doesn't actually have one in hand. So the answers would vary from the other question, since the risks are different. – thursdaysgeek Oct 18 '17 at 20:46
  • @Grasper, the risk is that your employer, instead of giving you a raise, tells you to accept that offer and lets you go. If you actually have an offer, or plan on working freelance that's fine. Go work that job, have a good time. If you didn't actually have an offer and you lied about the whole thing, you're unemployed. Is unemployment an acceptable outcome for you? – Seth R Oct 18 '17 at 20:51

Can I approach my employer and tell them that I got an offer from another employer and if they are willing to make me a counter offer in order to get a raise and make me stay?

You can surely try this as a negotiation technique, but I would not recommend it. Only do this if you truly have an offer in hand. You don't want to threaten to quit if you don't have a job to land on, that surely is something you don't want.

There are other ways for asking for a raise, and this seems to be quite risky given that you have much to lose if your negotiation fails. Proceed with care.

Edit: You may say that even if it fails you will still be working there. This might not be the case, as they can take your bluff seriously and decide to terminate you right there.

That or, if they say "no, we won't give you a raise" and don't fire you, it will be evident that you were just lying to get the promotion, something that could damage your professional reputation.

I suggest you search for other offers before trying to do this.

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  • Why would that fail? If they won't give me a raise I will still stay with them. – Grasper Oct 18 '17 at 19:02
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    Not necessarily, they may not take it lightly and decide you are no longer committed to the company and decide to terminate you right there. It is a risky bluff. Besides if they say "no" and still don't fire you it will be evident that you were lying to get a promotion, something that may also be harmful to your professional reputation. – DarkCygnus Oct 18 '17 at 19:03
  • no, my company is very needy. They hired back many people who left and then they returned. – Grasper Oct 18 '17 at 19:07
  • Still I would not risk it. Even though you say the have rehired, you can still be fired then, even though they took you some time later. I suppose that is something you dont want. If you feel like this may be a safe move go ahead, but I must insist that this can surely backfire on you. – DarkCygnus Oct 18 '17 at 19:09
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    @Grasper it could be helpful if you check this question How should I properly approach my boss if I'm feeling underpaid? you may get more insights on how to safely and properly ask for a raise. Good luck :) – DarkCygnus Oct 18 '17 at 20:19

You are playing an incredibly dangerous game here. If they refuse to give you a counter offer, then your options are either to quit and have no job, or to stay with the company anyway, in which case your credibility has been destroyed. If they find out, your boss will know that you are a liar and that is not something you want.

Something similar happened to a friend of mine: they went to their boss with a real offer and asked for a counter-offer, which they did not get, and decided to stay in their current job. They basically lost their negotiating position with the company for the rest of their employment there. Management knew that their threats were toothless. As others have pointed out, they could even decide to end your employment right there and then.

If you are unhappy enough with your current salary that you are willing to take action, then you should actually go out and get a better offer from another company. Do not make one up. You have far more to lose than you have to gain.

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  • I would just say I decided to stay. No one would know any more details. – Grasper Oct 18 '17 at 19:06
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    Doesn't matter. You still have plenty to lose, even if the offer was real. See the amended answer. – TheSoundDefense Oct 18 '17 at 19:09
  • @Grasper - You would be forever be the guy who called out "wolf" when they didn't mean it. You will basically lose all future negotiation power with regards to a raise. – Donald Oct 19 '17 at 16:58

You can do anything you want. But this could backfire in a number of ways:

  1. Your employer may respond by suggesting you take the offer.
  2. Your employer may ask for proof of the offer before offering a raise.
  3. Your employer may offer you a raise. But they might also immediately begin interviewing candidates for your position, and fire you when they have a suitable replacement.
  4. Your employer may figure out that you are lying to them and fire you.

Most of the negative outcomes involve you losing face and/or being shown the door.

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  • This happens all the time here. Some people stay some leave. Not a biggie. – Grasper Oct 18 '17 at 19:09
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    Then why are you asking the question in the first place? – djohnson10 Oct 18 '17 at 20:22

Without even wanting to get into the ethical issue of being a liar, don't play chicken unless you're prepared to lose. By walking in any saying "I've got another offer", you're risking your employer saying "OK, fine. You're not committed to this company. Bye. Don't let the door hit you on the way out." If you're prepared to take that chance, then maybe do this. If not...

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