One of the most scaring and daunting parts of anyone’s career is negotiating your salary, but it is also the most important one. According to a salary.com survey, approximately one out of five people do not negotiate their salary. If you don’t negotiate your salary, then you might miss out on more than $500,000 over the course of your career. If you are asking for a raise or starting a new job, you need to be familiar with the ways on how to talk money. You need to find a perfect middle ground between feeling short-changed and being totally unrealistic is vital in obtaining the salary you want and deserve. To help you get to prepare to negotiate salary, here are some of the best tips from salary negotiation experts.
#1. Research, Research, Research
While you’re discussing for an increment in your salary for a new job or asking for a raise at your current job, one of the first things you need to do is to be prepared to back up your request with facts and hard data. You can gather data by doing a good amount of research related to your job and salary ranges. You also need to research what your company’s competitor are paying their employees for the same responsibilities as you. This doesn’t mean you research for the same job titles but you need to focus more on the positions that have same responsibilities as you.
You can learn about average salaries and research the market rate for your position by researching job search sites like Salary.com, PayScale.com, and Glassdoor.com, and while doing so, you also need to take into account the company’s size, industry, and location. Moreover, before signing a contract, speak with the human resources of your company to know about the usual pay ranges. After doing all this research, you will be equipped with some realistic expectations.
Then, you need to ask for a higher salary in a planned strategic way. You can ask for it by using the following phrase: “I got to know that our competitor is paying $X for someone with the same position. At present, is our company successful enough to match?” Putting your request in this manner is kind of a leveraging technique that will put the ball back in your employer’s court.
#2. Study About Your Company’s Budget
While asking for a raise in your salary, you need to focus on areas other than your own performance and qualifications like you should consider how the company is doing at the moment. Every company has an exact budget set out and you can just go in and ask for a random figure. Instead, you must consider if your request is realistic or not. Sometimes you wish won’t be fulfilled, even if you deserve a raise because the company is struggling right now. You need to think of more strategic areas and should know that getting a raise is all about timings and the company’s financial position.
#3. Consider Your Current Value Honestly
Before going to your boss for salary negotiations, you need to make your case and focus mainly on your value. It’s very important to take your time while considering the value you bring to your company. Employers are pretty straightforward when they are hiring, as to what they want in regards to their future employee, as they aim to hire committed, passionate and effective employees who will work alongside them to achieve the company’s mission. So if you are asking for a raise, you need to show your employer that you deserve that raise.
To do so, you should make a list of all your major accomplishments and contributions to the company, and quantify them whenever possible. That list can include methods and techniques you used to manage company’s finances, modernized different process, and the like. You can also think about a work problem that you tackled diligently, and how your solution benefited the company in financial terms. All these aspects will help you determine your financial worth to the company.
You need to make your case by convincing them that you have contributed a lot to the company and can do more and that deserves greater compensation because of your value.
#4. Wait Until the Right Time to Talk Money
One cardinal rule while negotiating your salary is that you should never be the first to talk about money and name a number. So when is the right time to ask for it? Well, ideally, you must wait until after the first interview to start any kind of salary conversation. But what if your employer brings it up? And that question will come up for sure and you will feel pressured to give a number. You need to redirect your employer to your accomplishments instead of money and make some efforts to deflect that discussion. If your efforts aren’t successful, give a narrow range which you would be happy to take, even if they offer the lowest of that range. It should be noted that you do not make the company focused on your wants and needs, even before they are dedicated to needing you.
#5. Try Not To Bring Your Emotions into It
You can be very terrible at negotiating if you are way too emotional. You might take the offers personally when it comes to salary negotiations (e.g. “was I not good enough for a bigger offer?”). I would suggest that you refrain from bringing any kind of personal emotions into it because this negotiation is not at all about either of you winning or losing. Rather it’s about both parties getting something they want most in place of giving something in return. It’s very important to leave any personal emotions at the door and postpone the salary negotiating until the time when you will be more able to suppress and control your emotions.
#6. Be Ready To Discuss More Than Money
Sometimes, your employer would not budge on the number because they company may have fixed salary. This doesn’t mean your employer don’t value your contribution but maybe can’t give you a raise right now due to budget limits. If this is the case, there are other compensation elements that you can discuss.
If they value your worth in the company then they will want you to be happy too. And they might be happy to help you out by giving you an overall better offer by being more flexible in the benefits package.
Extra vacation days
Additional training/educational opportunities
More flexibility in your schedule
Improvement in bonus structure (cash or shares or both)
These will totally depend on want you want, so be confident when you ask. At times, negotiating other aspects of your benefits package can help you get where ever you want to be.
#6. Stay Positive And Confident
Talking about money is considered universally awkward and you need to know that you are not alone if you feel scary and stressful. You need to focus on the positive aspects of it if you want to avoid getting too overwhelmed. If you are new at the job then you need to focus on the excitement of this new experience and opportunity. If you have already worked there for a while, then convey your passion for what you do. Issues related to money are sensitive and be dealt accordingly and in calm collected manner. You must control your emotions and avoid going on emotional rants, or back talking about your boss to your co-workers and never try to corner your boss regarding this matter. Instead be calm and positive because a little bit of positivity can go a long way in achieving your goals.
So if you are in the process of getting a new job, then do consider some the tips above for negotiating the salary you really deserve. Don’t be amazed if you are able to negotiate a great salary and get a good reputation by this these salary negotiation tips.
Almas is an avid reader and a fitness enthusiast. When she is not grinding in the gym, you can find her either reading or writing. She is also a self-taught baker and feminist at heart. She longs for a utopian society which lacks any form of hate but then she realizes her own impossible wishes and writes to liberate her thoughts.