Why would my employer do this? Is this a counter offer? Am I screwed?

I have been in my entry-level position for close to 4 years at my company. I am getting close to the point where there is not much more I can really do. I always get stellar performance reviews, and I work really hard.

I have been internally interviewing at my company for 3 months (3 different positions). I was told during the previous internal interviews that I needed more experience with extra responsibilities for those other positions.

A friend approached me about taking a job with their company. They were willing to offer me a 7% increase in my salary and some increased responsibilities. My first thought was "this is wonderful! I can gain more experience and get a better job down the line at my current company"

I decided to talk with my supervisor about the offer from my friend. I explained that I am still loyal to our company, but that I was leaning to take my friend's position because I am looking for more responsibilities (because of the previous feedback). My supervisor was obviously shocked because I am a high performer. I told her that the extra pay was nice, and that if my current company could offer me the expanded responsibilities and that 7% bump I would gladly stay. She assured me that she was going to see what she could do.

My supervisor called me 2 hours later and said that she had met with our VP and HR and was going to offer me a 15% pay increase. She mentioned that I was very appreciated and that nobody wanted me to leave, that she was going to bump me up a pay grade (no clue what that means), and that our team would be expanding its responsibilities and that I could help with that. She also said that her decision would not impact an internal job I also applied for. I was taken aback by the large pay increase. And told her that I would like a write-up on what essentially is going to be going on. She said she would get back to me on Monday.

It doesn’t take an expert to google and learn that counter-offers come with a vengeance. My question, is my current company trying to draw me in to stay so that they can plan for me to obsolete?

I would love some professional advice because I really don't know what to do.

I find it odd that I get this magic pay increase that I did not think would ever happen at my company. I am worried that if I take their new offer I will be screwed in the long run. I don't want to burn my friend. But I also don't hate my current job, I am really just focused on getting more responsibility, I don't want to be cornered in an entry-level role forever. I know that if I leave now I will probably also burn a bridge with my current employer. I feel like I got myself into a big pickle.

TL: DR my company is offering me a 15% salary increase because I said I was offered a job at another company.


Bring the counteroffer to your friends' company - ask them to come up on their offer, then take it and quit your current job.

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