The job-hunting process can be a difficult one, so receiving a job offer seems like it might be the destination. If one offer is good, multiple offers must be great, right? Anyone who has ever picked which flavor of ice cream to buy knows that picking a flavor and sticking with it can be hard, especially when that rocky road looked so good. So how do you ensure that you are thinking about the offers in the best way to make the right choice?
Intrinsic motivators, such as enjoying the work you’re doing, the reason you’re doing it, and at what level you’re doing it. These are generally more important in the long run than extrinsic factors like prestige status, salary, and/or status. Resist the temptation to dismiss things like opportunity for advancement or quality of training in favor of things like a better job title. Many students fail to consider firms outside the Big 4 just because that seems like what everyone else is doing. While the Big 4 are indeed prestigious and would surely be a worthwhile opportunity for most in public accounting, fantastic opportunities may lie elsewhere as well.
Remember when choosing a firm that whether you are compatible with the established “office culture” may seem like a fringe consideration, but such compatibility is truly essential. If you connected well with the staff and partners then that is a good indication that you would continue to be happy there in the future. Research your potential employer firms for a greater understanding of what they value and how they achieve it. The internet is great a resource to see what people have to say about the firm that may be sparking your interests. The bottom-line though is to trust your gut. If you feel like you can thrive in a firm then make the right choice and go with it. You’re more likely to excel in an environment that makes you happy than anywhere else.