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Extending A Counter Offer? Lessons to Consider from Manny Diaz

Earlier this week, the head football coach of the Miami Hurricanes, Manny Diaz returned to his home town shortly after accepting a job at Temple. The promise of a promotion and strong passion for the Hurricanes enticed Diaz to accept the counter offer at Miami. Sound familiar? College football draws surprising parallels to today’s hiring landscape. As we enter 2019 and the jobs market continues to heat up, employees are keeping their eyes and ears open to new opportunities. With retention top-of-mind, many executives are extending counter offers to keep their top performers.  When evaluating whether to extend a counter offer, here are a few takeaways from the return of the Miami Hurricane’s head coach Manny Diaz:

Consider connections:


An employee has another offer on the table, but do they really want to leave? Before offering a raise or promotion, evaluate their connection to the company. Are they passionate about the organization’s mission, culture and values? Manny Diaz certainly was.

“Miami is home,” Diaz told the Associated Press on Sunday night. “The U has truly been the job for me since I first got into coaching.”

If an employee has built strong relationships, has tenure at the organization and a passion for what they do, a counter offer may make sense. On the other hand, if the employee is uninterested and disengaged, you may want to reconsider.

Reflect on accomplishments


Evaluate the employee’s contributions to the organization. What innovative ideas and unique skills do they bring to the table? It can be challenging and expensive to lose a top performer. If an employee matches Diaz’s drive, consider asking them to stay. Diaz's unit ranked second in total defense and first in passing defense. According to Miami’s athletic director, “[Manny Diaz] is absolutely the passionate and innovative leader that our program needs.”

However, the decision may not always be so crystal clear. It’s essential to dive in to specific accomplishments and evaluate if the skills can be easily retaught or coached to a new employee in that role. 

Ask yourself: How will it impact the team?


Before you extend a counter offer, think about how relationships may change. Will the team accept the leader's return if they know he or she had one foot out the door? Diaz is an example of someone who cultivated strong relationships and trust within the organization. "I give this coach all my respect," Miami running back Camron Davis said. In this case, team members are ready to depend on Diaz just like they did before. 

Evaluate how a counter offer will impact the dynamic in your unique situation. While it works in Miami’s case, in some instances, a returning leader could cause tension on the team. 

For more information on counter offers, click here.

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