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Author Topic: Playing job offers against one another  (Read 716 times)

tacojohn

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Playing job offers against one another
« on: December 12, 2006, 03:48:22 PM »
Here's my situation.  I received a job offer.  I asked for some time to think about it and was given until the end of the week.  However, there's a firm I would rather work for which has yet to get back to me.  The end of the week will be two weeks after the interview.

Here's my question: Is it good manners to let the preferred firm know that I (a) have an offer, (b) would rather work for them, and (c) how have some sort of deadline?  Is e-mail or phone better for something like this?  Any idea how to phrase it?

Also, say Firm B (the preferred firm) says it's going to be, for instance, the end of next week.  What is the best way to ask for an extra week from Firm A (the one that gave me the offer)?  Should I say I'm waiting on another interview I went on?

Texas88

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Re: Playing job offers against one another
« Reply #1 on: December 12, 2006, 04:15:50 PM »
Ok, I haven't won the job lottery yet, so I won't pretend to give you advice... but I've heard that firms are usually willing to give you more time. They'd rather do that than have you take their offer and then blow it off later after you get a better one.

I have a question: What year are you? Just asking because if you're a 1L, you're a rockstar for getting offers already!

Regardless, congrats on the offer!

xferlawstudent

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Re: Playing job offers against one another
« Reply #2 on: December 12, 2006, 04:25:04 PM »
If you got the job through OCI or otherwise through you school, I believe there is a time limit that they must keep the job open.  Check with your school--I want to say it is a month, per NALP guidelines, but I'm more focused on environmental law right now

jacy85

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Re: Playing job offers against one another
« Reply #3 on: December 12, 2006, 10:53:52 PM »
I would contact either the hiring partner or the person you've been in contact with the most re: interviews at the other Firm and just be polite and honest with them.  I'm sure they've faced this situation before.

sharpchick

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Re: Playing job offers against one another
« Reply #4 on: December 12, 2006, 10:54:36 PM »
Congrats on your offer!  I was told at my interview today that if I had another offer, I should absolutely call them and ask where they were in their decision. The partner was very clear in acknowledging that they are a little slower sometimes and they are very busy, but they said, please please call us and let us know.  I say absolutely do it!  As for asking the firm you have an offer from for an extension, I'd say if you really want to work for the other firm and they've given you a definite time by when they'll do it that is short, then yes.  Either way, good luck!

Texas88

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Re: Playing job offers against one another
« Reply #5 on: December 13, 2006, 12:47:34 AM »
Sharpchick -- Glad your interview went well. I hope you get an offer!

tacojohn

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Re: Playing job offers against one another
« Reply #6 on: December 13, 2006, 11:08:29 PM »
I'm a 2L, so I'm no rockstar.

Lenny

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Re: Playing job offers against one another
« Reply #7 on: December 14, 2006, 10:58:45 AM »
It is definitely ok to call up Preferred Firm and tell them the situation and that you would prefer to work for them, and ask for a timeline.  Firm offers are like dating - your are more attractive to the guy/girl you want once he/she sees you with someone else - you're now dateable.

It is also ok to call up the other firm and explain the situation.  Be nuanced about it - don't just say "I'm waiting to get word from another firm that I like better than you."  Say something like "I just need a few more days/weeks/whatever to be able to get a complete picture of my options."  This is business - if you start caring about feelings, you're playing right into their recruiting scheme.

Felsen

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Re: Playing job offers against one another
« Reply #8 on: December 24, 2006, 11:36:41 PM »
OK, you answered my first question, you're a 2L.  This makes a difference.  Note, I've not gone through the process yet, but this is what I've gathered.

There is a deadline required by the NALP for when job offers can first expire.  It is December 1 (that's what the Skadden folks said at a Q&A session I attended).  Since it is already past that point, there probably aren't additional requirements.  The firms are trying to finalize who will actually be coming over the summer so they can plan on how many 1L positions they'll have, and possibly grab any remaining 2Ls.

It is perfectly acceptable to call a firm who hasn't given you an answer yet and tell them you have a job offer and need to make a decision soon.  I am presuming of course that you have already interviewed with the firm and are just waiting on a decision.  You can call them (one of the interviewers probably gave you their card).  Start by asking them what the status of their decision is.  If they are still deciding, let them know you have an offer on the table, but need to act on it.  Give them the date you need to know by.

If they want you, they'll speed things up.  You can tell them that you'd really like to work at their company, but you need an offer or else you'll have to take the existing offer.  If they don't want you, they won't do anything, so you'll want to more seriously consider the existing job offer.

Definitely do this through a phone call, not an e-mail.  Do not leave the information in a voice message, you want to talk with someone directly to make sure someone is going to act on it.  Make sure you talk with a decision-maker.  You want to talk with someone who is involved in the process and can actually speed up a decision, rather than the person who was just sitting in on the interview to learn how to do a recruiting job.

I know, this is too late to help you by now, but maybe someone else will have a similar question.