Art of Negotiating

The Art of Negotiating a Salary Like a Pro

In Customer Resources, Strategy Resources by Brandt A. HandleyLeave a Comment

Great–you’ve made it past the initial rounds of the interview process! This is good.

Now, though, you’re on to the part that many people dread the most: salary negotiation.

You don’t have to dread it, though, and you shouldn’t because being positive and confident is key to getting the competitive salary you want. You can (and should) prepare for this part of the interview, and this preparation will help if you’re in the camp that truly dreads this part of the process.

Here’s how:

  1. Research and know your worth: Before entering into negotiations, know the market. You don’t want to propose a number that is sky-high compared to the industry average, but you also want to make sure you’re being compensated fairly. So, research those average salary ranges for your position and location. Use Glassdoor, LinkedIn,, and Payscale to help!
  2. Highlight your value: Throughout the whole interview process, make sure you’re emphasizing the value you will bring to the role and how you’ll positively impact the company’s goals and bottom line. 
  3. Don’t jump the gun. Wait until you’ve received a formal offer before you negotiate a salary because that offer gives you leverage.
  4. Take a reality check: Set a target salary range based upon that research you did, but be open to negotiation. Take into account your own experience, the company’s budget, and industry standards.
  5. Practice! This part of the process can be scary, so rehearse your points in advance AND practice listening. Hot tip: practice in front of a mirror so you can hone that calm and professional demeanor you want to take wit you.
  6. Consider the what-ifs: If you really, really want the job but the employer is unable to meet your salary expectations, what else could they do to make it up? A signing bonus? What about stock options, a flexible work schedule or hybrid mode, more vacation days, or a performance-based raise after six months or so? It’s also important to take into account health insurance, retirement plans, professional development opportunities, and other incentives.
  7. Know your limits. If there is a chasm between what you need and what they’re willing to offer or the employer is unwilling to be flexible, be prepared to walk away. 

Negotiation is two-sided and both you and your employer should feel satisfied with the outcome!

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