If everything about the new position is satisfactory, go ahead and accept the offer. If you’re expecting an offer from a second company, you should let the second company know about your offer right away, so they can speed up their decision. That way, you’ll avoid jeopardizing one deal for the sake of another.
Once an offer’s on the table, it makes common sense to accept or reject it within a day or so. Otherwise, your inability to commit will reflect poorly on the way you make decisions; or it will telegraph your lack of enthusiasm to the new employer. In either case, you’re likely to be bruised by waiting too long.
If you have legitimate concerns, or you still have questions that need to be answered, now is the time to bring them up. Rather than tell the employer, “I’ll have to think it over,” use the following script:
“Mr. Employer, this job looks very good to me, and I’m enthusiastic about coming to work for your company. I’ll be in a position to accept your offer and start in two weeks if I can just clarify a couple of things…”
The answers you get will make your decision for you, and you’ll either accept or reject the company’s offer.
If you decide to reject an offer, remember that it’s almost impossible to resurrect the deal at a later date, since the position will be offered to someone else, or the employer will feel insulted, and close the door on your candidacy. Whatever you do, make certain your decision is final.