I've received an offer from one of the Big4. The post is IT-related and managerial in nature.

There were some back-and-forth about the salary. The salary was far below my expectations and far below my stated expected range. I provided a thorough counter-offer of why I believe that the base salary should be bumped by X%. I received a counter-offer with no bump in base salary at all, instead increasing sign-in bonuses (which for me do not mean much as they're one-offs).

I thought about the offer, and 4 days later I responded via telephone that I would have to decline the offer as the base salary was well below my expectations and current earnings, and I would feel financially uneasy to sign such an offer (mind you that in all communication I was very polite and respectful). The partner who I was being interviewed by (throughout the whole process), said that he did not accept my rejection of the offer and would like to chat via telephone after the weekend so I could rationalize my thought process to him and see what we can do about it.

It has been close to 4 weeks since the time we last spoke. I initially assumed that this could just be bureaucracy and politics (it took them 2 weeks to come back with their counter-offer) and I'm looking for closure; I don't mind if they moved forward with another candidate (I would expect that I would have been informed of this decision) or whether they are still considering how to approach my concerns, but I would like to know what the status of the situation is. Should I contact or stay silent and see how this pans out?

closed as off-topic by Jim G., NotMe, gnat, Dukeling, scaaahu Dec 7 '17 at 8:58

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  • I think you have closure. They offered, you declined even after a counter offer. There's not much more that needs to be said. – NotMe Dec 7 '17 at 0:25
  • Do you have a particularly strong desire to speak to them (assuming they might try to give other perks and won't increase the base, which appears to be the most likely scenario here)? If yes, contact them. If no, don't. – Dukeling Dec 7 '17 at 8:23
  • I think by not giving you an answer they've given you an answer. – Jonathon Cowley-Thom Dec 7 '17 at 11:55
  • "[the partner] would like to chat via telephone after the weekend" - Did you have that conversation? Did you make an appointment? You need to get back with them and continue the conversation if you find it worthwhile. Once you or he ceases the find the conversation worthwhile, then one of you stops and it ends there. That's probably better than you accepting an offer that you don't find acceptable. – Brandin Dec 7 '17 at 12:44
  • Don't call us, we'll call you. – SliderBlackrose Dec 7 '17 at 14:44

The ball is in their court: they know what they need to do to get you, and they know how to contact you. You rejected their last offer, and whether they decided to accept that after all, or are madly working behind the scenes to get a better offer, you are better off waiting. And moving on mentally.

If they call back with a better offer, you can be pleasantly surprised (or not so pleasantly, if the offer still isn't good enough). If they never call back, you've already moved on anyway, with other potential jobs in the works.


Some places have the mindset that they are correct, you accept their decision. The back and forth may be useless as when you're about to close the deal they add something, they know that it would be OK; you'll accept it.

Your statement is telling:

"... he did not accept my rejection of the offer and would like to chat via telephone after the weekend so I could rationalize my thought process to him and see what we can do about it.".

That seems demonstrative of the "what we tell you is correct" mindset.


  1. I've had places write me one week to decline my resume only to write the next week to explain that I am expected to be present on a particular day and time for an interview.
  2. At another place I showed up at the correct time for an interview and everything went well, at the end of the interview I expressed interest and mentioned that I looked forward to hearing back from them; to which the interviewer replied that they are not going to offer the position to anyone, the position is closed.
  3. I've spent more than a month fiddling back and forth every few days for a position at a large place that didn't pay much to start but had potential (I thought). Finally after beating out a page long agreement we signed.

    I started work and within a week they said we would tear up our agreement, they had a new one for me to sign; it took a half hour to explain to the person that he can have me sit in his office all day, he's the boss, I'm not altering our agreement. His word is good or it is not.

It sounds like they are speaking to you but ultimately you are to accept what you are told, nothing else is to be expected. So it's a waste of your time to give your input, they should simply offer the best they can and that's it.

I'd add X dollars per week they make you wait and pre-negotiate a sign-up, parachute, and raise minimums without review, be clear that they didn't call to waste your time.

If you can't stand up to them when you don't work there you won't be able to stand up to them when you do work there.

The interviewer probably has to explain to his boss why he is unable to hire anyone, if he had other options then a lot of time wouldn't be spent with you.

Let them call, just move on. Someone else might call 6 months down the road and say "Don't worry about that guy, I'm negotiating this"; and then proceed in the same manner.

Some places do that because some people accept that, it's only when no one will accept it that things fall apart.

  • I really want to hear the rest of the story on #3. You didn't blog it anywhere, did you? – Wesley Long Dec 7 '17 at 8:08
  • I took the parachute and went to somewhere else where I was placed in charge (except for the owners) and had a much lighter workload for 20% more. The first place continues to this day but wages have decreased slightly (when you include the COL and inflation). - I stayed at the 2nd place for years, eventually leaving for a higher workload and much higher wages. There's no blog. – Rob Dec 7 '17 at 13:10

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