A Strategy for Managing Multiple Job Offers

Hey everybody, I’m Brian Clapp, VP of Content and Engaged Learning at WorkInSports.com and this is the Work In Sports podcast…

Some big news before we get into the stat line and today’s question...

As some of you may have read -- WorkInSports has been acquired by iHire. Now, before panic ensues, this was not a hostile takeover like in the movies. We wanted this, we angled for this, we pushed for this!

iHire is an awesome company one we have long admired, In fact, our CEO and their CEO are good friends even before this deal.  



I’ll cut to the chase and oversimplify this whole process -- they have way, way, way more resources than we do, which means we can and will do more to help sports job seekers and sports employers. 

The tools and advantages of this deal will be explained in the months to come as we work through the integration process. I’ll be adding some quick segments to future shows to introduce you to new iHire/WIS tools aimed to help you land your dream job or hire your next great employee. 

If your organization wants help with their hiring -- call me. We will be set up to help you dominate more efficiently. 

If you have questions about stuff like this or for the Monday podcasts  -- hit me up. I’m available in all sorts of ways --- there is LinkedIn, connect with me there. We have a private Facebook group for this here podcast -- you can connect with me there. 

And my email still works and will forever.

FYI -- this podcast will grow. Our new team is highly committed to its growth and reach, which fires me up, so don’t worry about that.

I’m still here.

In fact, I’m already strategizing another career advice related podcast -- so if you have ideas on what you’d like from another career focused podcast. Speak!

Ok the question for the day -- a problem we all want to have from JohnPaul in Chicago…

“I have been offered an internship role with a smaller baseball league for the summer. They sent me the offer earlier this week and expect a response within a week.

 I also am now onto the last round of interviews for a full-time position with the NBA. 

The NBA won’t let me know for at least another 2 weeks which by then the offer for the baseball team will have expired. I don't know if I should ask for an extension from the baseball team or ask the NBA to expedite their process to let me know sooner if I make it or not. How do I approach this situation so that I am able to have enough time to make the right decision, and how do I communicate this to the baseball team or the NBA so that they potentially give me an extension or don't revoke the offer completely?”

JohnPaul, good question, one that I am happy to answer because I love that this is a real problem. It seems like for the last year everything was -- "I lost my job what the heck do I do now?" 

The chance to talk about a multiple offer situation -- love it, let’s jump in. 

I want to start out with some framework for this discussion -- this ends up being a very personal choice. I am going to present some strategies and approaches, but you have to make this call because there are three scenarios that can come out of this.

1: You get the job you want

2: You get the other job

3: You get neither

That is a realistic situation. You may not get either. I don’t want you blaming me, I want you to take ownership of your choices, but I’m more than happy to help guide you through a process.

I’m of the keep it simple mindset here. 

Ask yourself, which job do I really want? And don’t tell me both -- there is always a preference. Figure that out first. 

Need a hand? My wife and I do this trick and it works every time when you have a tough decision to make. 

Write down NBA on one sheet of paper, and Baseball on another. Have a friend put each sheet of paper in a hand behind their back. Pick one. 

Now immediately describe how you feel in that moment -- are you excited about this one? Or do you instantly feel disappointed it wasn’t the other?

Don’t ponder, don’t deliberate -- this is snap decision time. 

Depending on how you feel in that moment, that’ll tell you where your heart is. 

Ok, back to the real advice, instead of parlor games.

Once you have determined which one is most important to you, abide by their schedule.

John Paul, you wondered aloud, "should I ask the NBA to adjust their schedule and expedite their process?" -- just think about this for a second. The answer is no. You have zero leverage in this deliberation, if you can’t play by their schedule, they will move on. 

I’m not trying to sound heartless, I’m being honest. 

Identify the job you are most interested in, and play by their rules. Take some chances with the other secondary opportunity. 

Now, here the chance to really win over both: be super ultra honest and transparent with choice #2. 

Tell the minor league team, you are in process for a full-time job in the NBA. You are extremely excited about the opportunity they present, but you have to wait and see the process with the NBA through. It will be two weeks until you know for sure about the NBA and that your interest remains in their organization if they can be flexible with their decision-making.

To be clear -- they may not like this. They may think, we don’t want someone who thinks we are a second place choice! Or we’re not waiting for anyone!

There is that chance. You may lose this opportunity.

We speak honestly on this show.

But, I’ll tell you this, smart people, smart businesses, will recognize the conundrum, appreciate the situation and really value your honesty and transparency. 

Business ethics matter. Being a strong communicator matters. Being honest and open matters. 

Smart businesses will identify this in you and appreciate it. I think more often than not, they will still consider you. 

But, our primary goal, is to preserve your top opportunity and give you the best chance with the NBA full-time role you have identified as your top choice. 

Stay on their timeline, play by their rules, don’t ask for any accommodations. And nail that process.

If it doesn’t work, come back to team B. 

Tell them honestly, "I just finished up with the NBA, they have decided to go in a different direction and I humbly ask if your opportunity is still available. I appreciate you being flexible and let me follow through on this opportunity, and I hope I can still be considered for a role in your org."

Don’t oversell it, don’t get into over-the-top commentaries like, "I knew all along yours was the better opportunity" or any other fluffery. Just be straight, appreciate their flexibility and try to see if the connection is salvageable. 

Look -- you could come out of this without. And that would stink, but keep this in mind, if you got this far with two sports organizations at the same time, you are doing things right, and other opportunities will come. 

If you get the NBA job - let’s party. If you get the MiLB internship -- let’s party still. 

It all comes down to deciding which is most important for your future and focusing on that schedule of activities. 

Alright, JohnPaul, like I said good problem to have, keep doing what you are doing because it’s working you are gaining interest. 

By Brian Clapp | March 29, 2021
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