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I've been on record against them since 1982 when I wrote the original "Counteroffers Are Counterproductive" for The Personnel Journal and a different version for the WSJ's Natnl. Bus. Employment Weekly. As our friend Chuck said covering the subject a few months ago http://www.compensationcafe.com/2012/04/a-cautionary-tale-counter-offers.html, they mostly are a stopgap measure, because the unhappy camper never sticks around (sometimes because they are fired thereafter as a lesson to others that blackmail is not REALLY rewarded).

Too bad Scott's research didn't repeat all the same questions this year. Also note that if you had a bad relationship with the mercenary before the counteroffer, the fact that it did not change afterwards is not a good thing. I can't imagine anyone with a good prior relationship accepting a counteroffer. Since a counteroffer usually occurs after the heart has left, the mind will eventually inevitably follow shortly thereafter. When the spirit has departed, the body cannot long survive.

That said, counteroffers can and do buy a little time to find a replacement.

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    Compensation consultant Ann Bares is the Managing Partner of Altura Consulting Group. Ann has more than 20 years of experience consulting with organizations in the areas of compensation and performance management.

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