In lieu of my last post pertaining to ethics issues with my current company, I was recently offered a developer position in another organization with some nice incentives and a pay package of $86k (up from my current $70k) and a collaborative environment where scrum and proper dev, qa, design, and pmp are used. I went to inform my current employer of my intent to resign in two weeks and they have already returned a counter offer which includes allowing me to telecommute five days a week (in lieu of my 114 mile round trip commute each day) as well as $90K in compensation and taking the lead on rearchitecting their applications rather than a subordinate position in the process, as well as addressing the ethical and management issues I've brought up as parts of my reasons for leaving. They have asked me to take my resignation off the table till the company president returns from vacation so he can personally meet with me to discuss remaining a part of the company for the long-term.

My questions are two parts. 1.) Would it be seen as greedy to seek $100k in compensation along with, telecommuting and a more management/leadership role in the application development process. 2.) Whether at $90k or $100k, would the pay increase be sufficient reason to stay in a company which lacks any real dev, qa, pmp leadership for the opportunity to lead those initiatives?

closed as primarily opinion-based by user52889, Kent A., thursdaysgeek, gnat, AndreiROM Dec 29 '15 at 22:42

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The answer to question 2) only you may give. You're the one who's worked there and dealt with those people. However, let's analyze the situation as a whole:


You work in an organization which by your own words lacks ethics and has management issues. You were upset enough about the things you experienced to make you want to leave, and found a good job elsewhere.


You have a pretty good offer on the table, but your ethically compromised bosses have returned with a counter offer: a boatload of money, a promotion, and the opportunity to telecommute! Sounds fantastic, congratulations! Right?

Too Good To be True

These guys could have given you a raise and listened to your concern long before now. A sudden $20K pay bump, promotion, etc. smells of desperation to me, and that won't work out well for you in the long term.

Why? Because no one is irreplaceable, and your lack of loyalty will never be forgotten. They might need you desperately now, and are willing to bend over backwards to secure your cooperation, but the second whatever hurdles they're facing are behind them you will be shown to the door, and make no mistake about it.

Driving Change

We all want to be that person who joins a poorly managed organization and somehow turns the whole thing around into a wildly successful enterprise. That happens in real life, but when it does it's because someone's fronting a lot of money and changing out most of the staff, never-mind the internal processes.

You are deluding yourself if you think that you will somehow take up a position of leadership and lead them all into a bright new future. This would have happened before now if the people in charge wished it. They are the ones driving the culture of the company and making the final decisions. The fact that they have not taken any steps until you were half way out the door tells me that this is not actually important to them, but simply something to lure you back in.

Do you honestly think you will have their full support in completely overhauling the way that the entire company works? To push major, disruptive changes into many departments? Hire the staff to make those processes a reality? Tell other managers how to run their teams? Dismiss or punish uncooperative staff? How about develop and implement the training, all while developing products, and pushing features out the door? Right.


If this company is ethically compromised, and poorly led, and knowing that statistically this is not likely to change, why would you stick around for more of the same behavior which drove you to quit in the first place? Especially knowing that you will be painting a target on your back for later retaliation as an over-paid, disloyal employee?

I'd take that other job offer and never look back.

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    OTOH, the only place that you have a chance to be the one who sets up all those cool things is a place that doesn't already have them. And being that person is great for your resume. – Amy Blankenship Dec 29 '15 at 21:12
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    @amyblankenship - yes, however changes on that scale involve a lot of effort, time, money, and support from the company leadership, which will impact deliverables and step on a lot of toes. A company needs to commit to this sort of thing willingly, not at the threat of quitting. In the end the OP is the only one who understands the full situation. – AndreiROM Dec 29 '15 at 21:21
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    A little over the top but I still agree – paparazzo Dec 29 '15 at 21:24
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    Places that are willing to do this without some convincing usually already have, so realistically if you want a shot to do this in your career this type of place is going to be the most likely place to do it, even if it only has a small chance of success. And if you succeed, is there much you can't do? – Amy Blankenship Dec 29 '15 at 21:38
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    @amyblankenship - while I agree that this could be a great opportunity to try and do something truly magnificent with his career, the OP must also keep in mind that the chances of actually pulling any of it off are incredibly small. Seeing how that's the case he has to look at his own situation (single and with good savings vs having to provide for a wife and 3 kids, for example) before deciding to take the risk of potentially just being fired when the company doesn't need him as much anymore. – AndreiROM Dec 29 '15 at 22:04

I like the answer from AndreiROM but too much for a comment.

Coming from $70K to $90K is a strong statement but going from $86K to $90K is not a strong statement.

Say you were able to rearchitect your current environment and address ethical and management problems. That could boost you to a mid or senior manager position. It has a high reward but a high risk - the chance of pulling that off in the environment you describe is very low. There is also the risk they fire after a year at $90K. In poker you would do what is called expected value (EV). Where would you be in a 2 years:

  • Hero current job
    5% (at best)
  • Tolerated at current job - no raise
  • Zero at current job (fired)
    Give that a negative cost of 3 month find a new job
    Not even account for not able to demand as much after fired
  • Stressful environment

EV stay = $57.75K

New job you are pretty much 100% to be like 92K (just two small raises)
More learning and less stress

EV leave = $92K

EV leave / EV stay = 1.6

Work the numbers but even if they gave $100K it would not change the numbers. And they are more likely to fire - not just for the bigger number but because you negotiated and bigger number. I don't think a bigger number today from you current company gives you a better EV.

It does not take a slide rule here to take the other offer.

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