Negotiating your initial salary can be scary, but it can have big payoffs. Because many raises are often percentage based, starting with a higher salary will give you an advantage for the rest of your career. You only get one shot at the initial salary so dont be scared to advocate for yourself!
When many people get a job offer, they are so thrilled to even have the job, that they neglect to put thought and effort into the compensation. Also, many people have a fear of coming off pushy or ungrateful. There is nothing wrong with respectfully asking for fair pay.
Heres some tips to help you successfully negotiate your salary.
- Research your worth. Making up a number that you think sounds fair will not cut it. Take some time to find out what the average pay for your job, in your area, with your experience is paying. Use a tool such as Job Search Intelligence or the U.S Burea of Labor Statistics. This is the single most important step in negotiating your salary and will give you a realistic number.
- Do not disclose your number. Now that you know how much you want, do not be the first person in the interview to say that number. Often times, an employer will ask “How much are you looking for?” This is a tactic they are using to see if they can lowball you. Also, there is potential to scare them off if you name a price too high. If your potential employer asks this question, you should respond with, “I am open to negotiation and would need to see what compensation package your company provides” – or something similar to that.
- Be prepared to counteroffer. Just because you get an offer you arent happy with, doesnt mean you should turn it down. Type up a thoughtful and respectful counter offer letter for your hiring manager. At this point, include what pay you are looking for and justify it. I did this for my first job and it worked! Don’t be too scared to try it because most companies expect some negotiation.
- Negotiate benefits. I always wish that I asked for more leave in my initial offer! People often forget about all the other benefits that a company might offer. Consider using them as another form of salary negotiation.
- Attitude counts. You need to walk the line between being firm and confident without being pushy or rude. Also, coming off too eager for the job in initial contact can tip the hiring manager off that you will accept the job no matter what. Try to be cool, calm, and confident throughout the entire process.
Salary negotiation doesn’t just pertain to initial interviews. If you think you deserve a raise at work, bring it up during your next review and arm yourself with research and justifications!
Keep these tips in mind during your next interview process and you will have a successful salary negotiation. What are your tactics for salary negotiation? Have you ever successfully negotiated? Let me know!