How to Negotiate a Higher Salary and Why You Should Try
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Whenever you are job hunting or simply going to an interview or two just to prospect the market and see if there’s a better position for you out there, always keep negotiation on your mind. Negotiating a higher salary may not cross you mind in several situations, for example one of these:
- You’re a bit shy and not very outspoken about these things;
- You think the initial offer you got is more than reasonable (and already more generous than what you’re currently making, or compared to your last similar position);
- You’re not sure whether you should go to salary negotiation so soon after receiving the initial job offer, and maybe ask your company about a promotion or salary increase only after a while.
Let us set the record straight: you should always try to negotiate a job offer the minute you sit down for it, no matter how reasonable the offer seems. Even if you are right in your assessment and there’s probably no way you could obtain a higher pay from this initial salary negotiation, you should still try. If you at least attempt to steer the conversation into the direction of negotiating a higher salary, you will let your potential employers know two things: that you are aware of your self-value and that you will strive to earn more on the long-term. Both of these make you seem like a very valuable addition to their team. That’s why you should never ever give the impression that you settle immediately for the first offer you get, and try to negotiate a job offer before accepting it (even if the terms will remain the same).
How to Negotiate a Higher Salary: 5 Tips
The only problem is that not everyone knows how to negotiate a job offer, nor are they comfortable with it, since they are afraid something may go wrong during salary negotiation. You shouldn’t worry about it though: as long as you remain tactful, there’s nothing wrong with negotiating a higher salary, and even if your employer will stick to their initial offer, you will still make a good impression for trying. Here are the main salary negotiation tips to keep in mind before any interview or meeting discussing a job offer you’ve received.
1. Do your homework and research salary information
In order to discern whether the offer you got is indeed a fair one or not, you should definitely know how much are people working on similar positions earning. Also consider factors such as the city you live in (salaries vary by geography), the size of the company and so on. Then, you can decide whether you can reasonably ask for more or not.
2. Also research the company and the position
Another good thing to research before going to negotiate a job offer is the place itself, as well as the position you will be expected to fill. Is the employee in that position crucial to the revenues of the business? In what ways? How much did this company pay people in this position before you came along? These are all relevant questions to ponder (and research on) before going to the interview.
3. Bring along a detailed report of your achievements
Don’t forget to look to yourself as well. In order to argue that you deserve to be rewarded better for your work, you will need to prove why. A detailed report containing graphics and other neatly organized presentations of data would be perfect. Focus on your previous achievements, but in a results-oriented way: mention how you managed to increase the efficiency of your department in your previous company and so on.
4. Define your target, as well as your ‘walk-away’ point
Think about how much you could reasonably demand in the middle of your salary negotiation (based on the factors we mentioned above).You should also consider your lowest acceptable point as well, meaning the minimum you would be willing to accept before walking away. If your previous research indicates you could surely do much better in most other companies, then leave the negotiating table and don’t look back.
5. Practice your negotiation skills and don’t accept anything from the start
Make sure you brush up on your negotiation skills before going to actually negotiate a job offer. If you think it would help, you could even practice some make-believe conversations with someone close to you. Also, as a final tip, make sure you don’t accept anything from the start, no matter how good you think it is. Experts on how to negotiate a higher salary can confirm that the best response is always ‘Thank you for your offer, I will think about it’. Still, if the offer is really good, make sure you do call them back soon, before someone else swoops in and accepts a similar deal, filling out the position. Good luck with your salary negotiation!