No one who is about to change jobs should use short-term criteria to make long-term career decisions. Yet, I contend that too many candidates (both active and passive), too many recruiters, too many HR people and too many hiring managers filter jobs and people in and out on short-term criteria before they even have a chance to understand the long-term opportunity. This is one of untended consequences companies make when treating a career move as a transaction rather than a serious business decision.

To test one aspect of this we created a survey comparing the criteria people use to engage in a serious career discussion vs. the criteria used to accept an offer. Following is the same list that’s included in the survey. (Note: I’ll update this blog post in a few days with the survey results, or sign-up for our weekly newsletter.)

The Criteria People Use to Engage in Career Conversations and Compare Offers

  • Location
  • Company name and reputation
  • Position title
  • Compensation package
  • The opportunity to take a lateral transfer
  • Generic hyperbole
  • The scope, challenges and content of the job
  • The quality of the hiring manager
  • The quality of the team
  • The importance of the job
  • The opportunity to grow
  • The company culture or mission
  • The candidate experience
  • Short and long term compensation package and benefit plan

Even if you’d don’t take the survey, how would you answer this first question?

“Assuming you’re not looking for another job, what criteria would you use to determine if you should spend more than a few minutes considering the opportunity?”

Here’s the second question, “After having full knowledge about the position, what criteria would you use to determine if you’d accept an offer and what's most important?”

That’s it. Did the criteria or the order of importance change?

Feel free to add your comments, but above all, don’t make long-term career decisions using short-term information.