How to Negotiate Salary
Salary negotiation is a cycle that repeats throughout your career. Whether you are starting a new job or asking for a pay raise, salary negotiation is a step that will always pop up.
Knowing how to negotiate salary offers in your career is very crucial and a skill that can make sure you are fairly compensated.
But as much as salary negotiation is a very critical step in career growth, some people find it scary to negotiate their salary. And this forces them to continue earning the same salary for a long or until the employer offers to raise the pay.
A survey by Salary.com revealed that only 37% of people always negotiate their salaries—while an astonishing 18% never do. Even worse, 44% of respondents claim to have never brought up the subject of a raise during their performance reviews.
And according to Linda Babcock’s book – “Girls Don’t Ask”, only 7% of women attempt to negotiate their first salary.
What these people don’t understand is that it is scarier never to negotiate salary. Well, we know how challenging it can be, especially if you have not mastered how to negotiate for better pay but worry not.
Below are tips that will prepare you for the next salary negotiation talk with your boss. Ready to learn more? Let’s get started.
Salary negotiation tips
- Wait for the right time.
Are you confident of the right amount you qualify to get? If yes, don’t rush to bring up the compensation issue. Be patient and wait until your employers table an offer. From there, make sure to be convincing enough why you qualify to be paid that amount.
- Resist throwing out the first number
Often, you will be asked to mention your salary requirements. Now in case you are asked to mention the kind of pay you are expecting, resist throughout the first figure. Instead, you can say you are open based on the position and the overall compensation package.
You can as well tell the employer you would like to learn more about the responsibilities and challenges of the job before discussing salary.
- Base your salary request on data
Now, in case you are forced to give a figure, the best option is to give a salary range based on your research. This now brings the significance of researching in advance.
If you do your homework well and you are convincing enough, it is possible to pocket a salary of choice or get a pay raise. One thing to avoid is talking about your personal financial needs when negotiating.
- Take your time
Develop a habit of taking time to review every offer tabled. Rushing to accept or reject is not always the best thing. You can even sleep over it before making the final decision.
Taking your time to review the offer gives you enough room to go through the salary offer plus other benefits and perks. Sometimes you may find benefits and perks offered are more negotiable and appealing.
- Consider the context
Often most companies group their employees in different categories with a set of salary ranges. Suppose you happen to be working in such companies or applying to such a company.
When determining how to negotiate salary, first try to figure out what pay category someone with your education level and experience would receive. From there, build your case for a salary at the high end of that range.
- Adapt your style for maximum success
According to a study by Michelle Marks of George Mason University and Crystal Harold of Temple University, individual differences in negotiating style determine how to negotiate salary and what to achieve. So, if prepared to win, you will actually win at the end of the negotiation.
This study polled 149 professional employees who had been hired in the past three years. The study focused on how these employees negotiated for their current positions, the negotiation strategies they used, outcomes, and the level of satisfaction with the process of negotiating for their jobs.
- Choose a salary negotiation strategy.
Having a strategy can help you accept an offer or not. Additionally, a strategy enables you to negotiate with a standard, straightforward counteroffer. So, it is always good to supplement your negotiation skills with a strategy just in case you are slapped with a lower offer than your minimum acceptable salary.
Below are points that will help you come up with a salary negotiation script:
- Their offer amount
- Your counter-offer amount
- Your minimum acceptable salary
- Your top three non-salary benefits
Just having the necessary input you need to write your script is not enough. You also need to practice and practice and practice before having the final discussion with your employer.
You can even find someone to play the role of a hiring manager as you polish up.
Salary negotiation example
Here is how you might approach the situation if you are negotiating face-to-face or via phone:
“Thank you for sending over the job offer package for the Regional Sales Manager position. I am excited about the opportunity and would like to reiterate how grateful I am you’ve considered me for this role.
I believe in your product and know I could help you drive even greater results.
However, before I accept your offer, I want to address the proposed salary.
As I shared during the interview process, I have more than twelve years of experience in sales, including eight years of experience in medical equipment sales, and I have two more years of management experience than stated in the job description.
In my last role, my team exceeded the monthly quota by 15% for two years in a row and landed three of the largest accounts in company history.
Given my experience and expertise, I am seeking a salary in the range of $145,000 to $150,000. However, I am open to discussing alternative compensation, such as opportunities for additional stock options or increased performance-based bonuses.”
While it may seem a daunting task to secure the pay you deserve during a salary negotiation, actually, it is not. You only need to help your employer understand why you qualify for the pay you are asking for. And once you do that, there is nothing to prevent any employer from honoring your request.
The above tips are also tailored to give you a hand when preparing to negotiate your salary. Hopefully, they will work for you. Good luck.