graduate champlain college

Turning Down a Job Offer

by Sarah Wilkinson, Class of ’17

You may be thinking, “Why the heck would I turn down a job offer?” and maybe at this stage of your life, you’re not in much of a position to do so, but sometimes, a job just isn’t a good fit. Maybe it’s in the wrong industry, the pay is less than you know you’re worth, or you know you won’t get along with your coworkers. If it feels wrong, it probably is.

So how do you turn down a job offer without burning any bridges? You need to craft a heartfelt email to the employer who hired you and say three things: thank you, why you are rejecting the job offer, and something to set groundwork for the future.

Step One:

In your email, be sure to tell the employer that you sincerely appreciate the opportunity to work for them and for all the time they put into reviewing your application and interviewing you.

Example 1: Thank you for the interview last month, and for the opportunity to come work at your company. You answered all my questions and helped me get to know the job and the company’s culture.

Example 2: Thank you for the offer to work as a Public Relations Assistant at your company. I appreciated you taking the time to show me around the office and answer all my questions.

Step Two:

You don’t have to go into much detail, but you owe it to the employer to let them know why you’re not accepting the job. Make sure not to say anything offensive that may mean you could never look to the company for employment again in the future.

Example 1: After consideration, I’ve decided to take a job with another company that will allow me to more closely pursue my interests in Marketing and Public Relations.

Example 2: This opportunity isn’t the best fit for my career goals at this time

Step Three:

Make sure as you sign off the email, to let the employer know you look forward to crossing paths with them sometime in the future, whether it be at an upcoming job conference or for future employment.

Example 1: It’s been a pleasure getting to know you, and I look forward to our paths crossing again in the future.

Example 2: I hope to see you next month at the Job Conference we talked about.

The main idea is to be kind, sincere, and honest when turning down a job offer. And, it’s okay to feel proud of yourself if you find that you have multiple job offers, just don’t let it shine through in your letter!

Source: The Muse