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Accept that new job -- the right way
Sunder Ramachandran
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January 04, 2007

We keep talking about how to reject an offer or how to follow up after an interview.

In my earlier articles, I have highlighted right way to reject a job offer and strategies you can use to follow up when the interviewer doesn't get back to you.

While it's important to stay professional when you are saying 'No' to a job offer, it's equally important to accept an offer the right way. One should clarify all the terms before you show up for the company's induction.

Writing a professional acceptance letter or email is the best way to achieve this goal. Here are some things all of us must keep in mind while saying 'Yes' to a job offer.

Start well

The acceptance letter is a fairly simple and pleasant letter to write. In the first paragraph, thank the company for the offer and directly accept the position by stating the proposed date of joining.

Restate the fine print

Next, restate the terms and conditions as you understand them. These are points you must have discussed during the negotiation stage. They may include salary, location, benefits or any other items. 

Restate any other instructions you were given in the job offer. These might include the date you will begin working, or the hours you would be working. It is extremely important to restate these details because they provide documentation of an understanding between you and the company before an actual contract is signed.

Ask for clarification

If there are some terms and conditions you do not understand, ask for clarification. It's better to gain absolute clarity before signing on the dotted line, rather than regret later. Watch out for benefits like insurance, medical claims and leave policy, and make sure they meet your expectations.

Keep it short

The company already realises your value -- that's why they made you an offer -- so don't tout your credentials and accomplishments. Keep your letter short and sweet. Any exaggeration about your accomplishments at this stage would leave an unpleasant taste in your new employer's mouth.

End on a positive tone

Finally, end with a statement of your happiness at the opportunity to join the company. Be thankful and courteous, watching your tone so as not to sound too overconfident. When you hear from the employer, save a copy of the letter or e-mail as a draft. This will come in handy if you run into trouble with any agreed terms in the future.

A sample letter

Dear Mr Sharma,

Thank you for offering me the position of marketing manager.

I would be willing to join the organisation effective January 5, 2006.  I would like to restate the following terms and conditions agreed upon during our final meeting:

I would request a clarification on the following:

Please let me know what would be a convenient time to call you and discuss the same.

Looking forward to joining the team at XYZ (name of the company).

Yours sincerely,
Vilas Malik
(M) XXXX
Address

Sunder Ramachandran is managing partner at WCH Solutions, a training solutions organisation. He can be reached at sunder@wchsolutions.com.



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