This whole salary negotiation thing is unpleasant. Despite the fact that I got a big, fat raise today, I feel fucking AWFUL. Maybe I never should have entertained the counter offer. Putting in my notice was horrible enough, but agreeing to hear a counter offer made things roughly 1,000 times more stressful.
I'd asked for a day, at least, to think about whether I'd entertain a counter offer, and if so, how much I'd need to make me stay. I was leaning toward taking the weekend, but then my boss let me know that he needed to get the pay increase information to HR or Payroll or whatever, by the end of the day today.
Even better, there was news that the company had been sold. Not that anyone is too terribly concerned. The company has been sold a number of times in its existence, but it's always stuck around. My boss has been with the company for 18 years, for Christ's sake. He wasn't worried at all, and said it might even be better for us in the long run, because now we're privately held.
So, the sale of the company was not unexpected, nor is it apparently a big deal. Yet the news fluttering around the office certainly added to the already-stressful day I was having. Honestly, I got nothing done, I couldn't eat and I was on the verge of tears half the day.
I threw out a ridiculous sum of money and waited. And waited. After a couple of hours, my boss called me to his office. He said they couldn't do that much, but they could give me a 25 percent increase. That's more than the offer I had, and even enough to cover the health insurance difference. He laid out a path for me, kept telling me how much potential I had and how much everyone liked working with me and what a great job I did. Yeah, yeah. I know.
After much stressing and texting with Macho Man, I decided to accept their offer. My boss was so happy, he came this close to hugging me. As it was, he jumped up and shook my hand and clapped me on the back. Then we went to tell his boss, who was also borderline giddy. So, yeah, that took a bit of the edge off.
However, calling to tell the other job I could not longer accept their offer sucked. I already felt like a huge asshole, but she made me feel much, much worse. And hey -- it's her right to be pissed. I'm leaving her in the lurch. She said, "I thought you wanted to work in government and this is where you wanted to be." That's true, but I also have bills to pay, lady. Also, what was I supposed to say in the interview? "Yeah, I'm just here for the fuck of it. I just don't want to lose my interviewing chops and I was curious about what the job actually was." Because that's why I was there.
In the end, there were other factors that led me to stay. Working from home and being able to show up whenever, as long as I'm there by 10:00 or so, are really nice perks. The prospect of leaving home shortly after 7:00 a.m. to get to work by 8:00 had me pretty worried, I will confess. The admin portion of the job would mean dealing with the public. And I'm not sure if you know this or not, but I generally do not care for the public. I'd have missed afternoon trivia dearly, and working my CSA share might have been a nightmare.
There will be much pondering and wondering whether I really made the right decision or not in the coming days and weeks and God knows how long after that. Right now, I'm going to lay on the couch and try to shut my brain off for a bit before I start working on the Chocolate Stout Cupcakes I'm making for The Boy I Currently Like. Also, I intend to get drunk. At least the urge to bawl has passed.