Did you just get your first professional job offer? As excited as you may be, reign in your enthusiasm so that it doesn't override your common sense.
Tell your prospective employer that you need a couple of days to go over the offer. The company has invested a lot of time getting to know you throughout your interviews. Now, you need to take some time and focus on getting to know the company. You also need to read that contract carefully. A little negotiation now can save you a lot of stress, heartache and legal fees later.
Here are some things you should consider doing before you sign on the dotted line:
1. Ask to see where you'll be working
Make no mistake -- companies want to woe the best and the brightest among today's professionals. That means they may put on a show for their applicants and display the most gleaming parts of their office interior.
But you need to see exactly where you'll be working. You know yourself best -- if working in an open space with unassigned desks is okay with you because you really carry everything you need in your laptop, that's great. However, someone who prefers private space actually needs those cubicle walls and someplace to put a personal mug in order to feel grounded and happy.
2. Ask to meet the people you'll work with most closely
You won't love your job if you can't stand the people you're going to be working with the most. Consider this: You may spend more active hours during the week with your co-workers than you do your own family. Doesn't that make it a wise plan to meet them at least once before you commit to working there?
3. Review your contract carefully
Go through your employment contract carefully and make sure that you understand everything it contains. If there is anything you find confusing or questionable, consider having your attorney analyze the contract for you to see if it really is a good deal.
In particular, make certain that you look for limitations on your future employment, especially noncompete agreements that restrict your ability to work in your field either geographically or chronologically once your employment ends.
Remember, there's no right or wrong answer when it comes to what makes a job "right" for someone -- it's all about what you find comfortable.
Source: FindLaw, "Between Offer and Acceptance," accessed Dec. 28, 2017