Noncompete agreements have become increasingly popular in recent years as businesses strive to retain top talent. With their increasing popularity comes resistance by employees to lock themselves into these roles by signing such a contract.
There are a few things to consider as you decide if you should sign the noncompete offered by your new employer.
Was it discussed before the offer?
A common issue for new hires is the placement of a non-compete agreement within the new hire paperwork without any forewarning, discussion or opportunity for negotiation. At that point, you accepted an offer without the knowledge that the agreement is necessary. This misrepresentation often occurs when employers refuse to negotiate the terms. Consider whether the position is important enough for you to bind yourself by that agreement.
How competitive is your industry?
Working in a highly competitive industry means an opportunity for growth and improving your salary when you find another job in your field. A non-compete agreement restricts your ability to do that. Think about your long-term goals and the trajectory you want for your career and only sign the agreement if it fits your needs and goals.
Some employees simply sign the noncompete agreement because they assume they have to. While it may be a requirement for employment with the company, you do not have to bind yourself to the business that way. Never sign a noncompete on the assumption that a business does not enforce them. Instead, consider the agreement carefully and ensure that you are comfortable with the terms before signing.