Proper way to renege a job offer-Urgent


I was notified yesterday that I got a job offer at a firm I really dream of working, but the thing is I have already accepted a job offer givent by another firm earlier ( but I didn’t sign any contract with the firm yet, cos they just sent me a written informal offer letter by email and asked me to accept it).

I feel bad for attempting to back out from the first offer, but I think I am determined to work for the second firm, so the issue for me is how to renege the first job offer properly. My biggest concern is that being in such a small and well-connected professional sector, I have fear that my reputation will be greatly weakened if the second firm finds out I renege for another firm.

THerefore, my question is how I should renege my job acceptance for the first firm properly. Should I be honest or should I just vaguely say I renege due to sudden change of my personal circumstances, or even lie (I personally resist this option)?

THanks sooo much!!!


Thank God I’m not the only one with that issue! I’m gonna ask my careers advisor for the best option. Unlike you I actually signed a contract for one (accepted no money)… Gosh, had when you can’t det a job… even harder when you can!


It’s a nice a problem to have in the current environment. You must have done well on the interview.

It sounds like you haven’t legally committed to the first job. I’d agree with Littlelegs, the industry is too big for one name to be remembered. However, people will remember a bad impression if you choose to apply for the first firm in the future.

I would go down the honest route. Say that:
you were privileged to receive an offer
due to the economic climate, you wanted to accept it quickly
since then you received a better offer which is more suited to your career goals and personal circumstances

In any case, there will a line of graduates waiting to take that position anyway. So the first firm won’t do too badly.