Career Development

Declining a Job Offer

Declining a Job Offer

You applied.  You interviewed.  You waited.  You received a job offer.  What happens now that you need to turn it down?

Show your appreciation.

  • They have already invested time and energy into you.  Make sure you share a heartfelt thank you to those that did so.
    "Thank you so much for the offer for the ABC position.  I truly enjoyed learning about XYZ Organization and the role and appreciate the generous offer."

  • Give a reason, but it's OK if you are vague.
    "After careful consideration, I have decided that now is not the best time to leave my current position."

    "While this position seems like a great opportunity, I have accepted a position that better aligns with my long-term career goals."
    "After much reflection, I have decided to take an opportunity in Cleveland, closer to relatives."

  • Stay in touch.
    "It has been truly a pleasure getting to know you. I hope our paths cross in the future."
    "Again, thank you for your time and support.  I wish you only the best."


  • It’s preferable to decline over the phone, although email will work.
  • Do not stall and let the employer know as soon as possible. Let them have time to reach out to other candidates.
  • If you handle things well, you will not burn bridges.