5 Signs You Should Not Accept a Job Offer

How do you know when you should pass on a job offer?You’ve interviewed for a position and, on the surface, the job is a perfect match. But you have noticed a few red flags during the interview that cause you to hesitate about accepting a job offer. Are these issues important or not?  Let’s look at five warning signs that indicate it may be better to continue your job search.


Sign # 1: Interviewer Complains About Their Current Staff

Just as you shouldn’t bad mouth your current or former employers, it’s never a good sign when your interviewer is criticizing his current staff. When this occurs, either your future co-workers will drive you crazy with their ineptness, or your future boss is a domineering tyrant.  Regardless of the reason, it’s probably best to leave this company in your rearview mirror.


Sign #2: The Interviewer Oversells the Opportunity

Everyone has heard the phrase, “If it’s too good to be true, it probably is!” When you are promised rapid promotion, easy success, and the ability to double or triple your starting salary in your first year, you need to question the long-term potential of the position.  If the interviewer spends little time asking you about your qualifications, and if she is vague about the job duties, those are definite red flags. Typically, overselling means that the company experiences rapid turnover and the interviewer is desperate to recruit as many new hires as possible.  Unless you are in need of some quick cash to get you through a tough time, keep looking.


Sign #3: The Same Job is Advertised Over and Over Again

Another sign that there will be trouble with a position is if the same opportunity is advertised over and over again. There are reasons why a job remains open or doesn’t stay filled.  Does the hiring manager have unrealistic expectations?  Is the compensation competitive?  Is it a bad work environment?  Even if you haven’t seen the opening advertised repeatedly, here are a couple of good questions to ask your interviewer:  “How long has this position been open?” and “What is the average tenure of someone in this position?”  Your recruiter’s answers will help you determine whether or not this is a high-turnover job.


Sign #4: The Employees Act Nervous Around the Boss

Most managers can display a warm and welcoming demeanor during the interview, making it difficult to tell if your interviewer is being genuine or if he is hiding his true colors. However, his employees have seen his real personality so you can learn a lot from their interactions with him.  Do they avoid eye contact?  Do they act nervous or fidgety when he speaks to them?  Do they walk the other way when they see him coming?  If you answer “yes” to any of these questions, there’s a good chance that the manager isn’t as personable as he appears.


Sign #5: The Employees Look Unhappy

You can tell a lot about a company by the energy, body language and facial expressions of its employees. As you walk by, do the employees look content and do they give you a warm welcoming smile, or do they look like they are trudging through their days?  If you work at this company, these are the people with whom you will be spending the bulk of your days.  If it’s a depressing atmosphere, than it probably isn’t the right fit for you.


In Conclusion…


It may be tempting to jump at a job offer if you like the responsibilities, but it is important to consider the whole picture, especially if you are looking for a career. Keep in mind, accepting the wrong position will likely prevent you from finding the right one.  So if you notice one or more of these signs, it may be better to keep looking rather than put yourself in the wrong situation.


Have you seen other signs during an interview that made you decide against the opportunity? Feel free to share your ideas in the comments section.



If you’ve had problems identifying a job offer that’s right for you, consider Area Temps’ temp-to-hire program. We can introduce you to leading companies throughout Northeast Ohio, and assist you in finding a position that will advance your career.  Our temp-to-hire program is a great way to try a company before you make a long-term commitment.  So, if you’re ready to find an exciting new position in the Cleveland area, let our experienced team help fast track your job search. Contact our expert Cleveland Ohio recruiters today.

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