First of all, breathe!! Be thankful you are in this position then pause and think about your original “wish list”. If you are working with a professional recruiter who has presented you with a job offer from one of their clients, go through everything with them. If you have been honest about your expectations the decision will be easier. The recruiter should go through everything step by step with you so you can see what makes sense to move forward in your career. Never look just at the job in hand but what the future might hold with a particular company or organization. Don’t get caught up in the scenario of taking the “highest offer” only to find out that you are in a dead-end job or that you have joined an organization that won’t be around in a couple of years.
A great exercise to perform is to sit down and write a “pro/con” list. On one side of the page put all the “pros” – all the things you like about the opportunity and offer at hand. Then, on the other side of the page, write down all the “cons” – the things that you don’t like and even go as far as to mark the ones that are “deal breakers”. For example, if an employer has offered you two week’s vacation and you know you must have four, find out if there is any “wiggle room “to start at three weeks and work your way up to four.
Negotiation of any offer is to be expected. The great news is; your professional recruiter is trained to negotiate. If they are truly working in the best interests of client and candidate alike, a win/win solution will come to bear.