Would You Accept Today’s Job Offer If Tomorrow’s Might Be Better?

nbv8ejI need your advice. For a friend, not for me. (I’m quite happy with my job!)

A friend of mine has been applying for jobs, and he got an offer today. He actually missed the phone call–the offer is on his voice mail. He hasn’t called back yet, and the organization didn’t give him a deadline, just, “Call us back when you get this message.” That kind of thing.

So that’s great. But the quandary is that my friend has applied for several jobs, and he actually has an interview with a different company next week. He would slightly prefer to work for that company, but it’s a complete unknown as to whether or not he’ll get an offer from them.

What is the right thing to do in this situation? I’ve been trying to figure it out. The only situation like this I’ve been in is where I got a job offer but didn’t have the prospect of another job. I was unsure about the job, so I asked for a few days to think about it. The company granted me that time, but I don’t think they were happy about it.

It’s the uncertainty factor that makes this really difficult. If my friend knew for sure that he was or wasn’t getting a job from the company next week, he could make a perfectly informed decision. But he doesn’t have that luxury.

He could try to calculate the odds of getting the new job and do a quantitative analysis based on his expected happiness at job A versus job B. That’s probably what my business school professors would do.

Or he could call company B tomorrow, tell them that he has a job offer on the table but that he would honestly prefer to work with them. Maybe they’d give him a chance to accelerate the process and do the interview tomorrow. He could probably stall until Monday to call back company B.

What do you think he should do?