Negotiating a starting salary can be one of the most uncomfortable situations for a prospective employee. Many positions have clearly defined salaries, especially for positions that involve commissions or other incentives. A lot of times, however, a company will advertise a job opening with an hourly rate or annual salary range that establishes low-end as well as high-end for the position depending on the experience of the candidate applying for the position.
We’ve come up with several tips to help you feel more comfortable when discussing salary options with your current or future employer. We all go through the negotiating process at one time or another in our careers. Keep these tips in mind and with our help you’ll be prepared to negotiate your best possible salary when the time arrives.
As a new hire coming in to an organization it is extremely important to maintain your professionalism throughout the process of negotiating your salary. You’ll want to avoid discussing your salary unless you are clearly stating your minimum requirements, especially early in the interview process. Let your prospective employer know where you need to be financially while making certain that you are not putting yourself into a corner you cannot negotiate yourself out of if need be.
One major item of note while negotiating your salary is to remember your salary is just part of your overall compensation package. While it is a very large part of the total package, remember to give the proper value to vacation / sick time, profit sharing, various insurance benefits and options for retirement plans that your employer may have to offer. If the company is unwilling to match the salary number you are looking for but the overall compensation package is better than average or includes a more flexible schedule it may be the best fit for you, be sure to weigh all of your options.
Much like you, your employer has their own needs and concerns when it comes to negotiating salaries for their employees. Having clearly defined goals, both for you individually as well as the direction of the organization as a whole, can help negotiations for both you AND your employer. Being able to not only identify WHAT you can do for an organization but more importantly HOW you intend to do it is ideal in salary negotiations.
In the event that you are unable to negotiate a higher salary at this time, learn from this experience. What goals or benchmarks did your employer discuss that you may have not focused on previously? What can you do not only better but also differently between now and your next review? Make notes on what you can do moving forward and keep what you have learned here in mind. You’ll be on your path to success in no time!