Even in today’s climate, you can negotiate your job offer. The art of negotiation requires data, emotional disconnect and the vocabulary.
Step One: Gathering the data
During the interview it is your job to learn everything you can about the job and company. You also did some pre-interview homework via networking and research. These are some important areas for you to have a strong understanding:
- Salary range
- Key components of the job (3,6,9 month goals)
- What are the company’s goals
- Trends in the company for tuition reimbursement, promotion, pay increases and history of negotiating offers
- Benefits cost and value
- Why they are most interested in you
- There may be other things that are important to your situation, so make sure you find out the answer before you get the offer
Step Two: Emotional Disconnect
This interview and the subsequent offer is a business transaction, period. The company wants to hire you because you are going to fix a problem within their organization or make them money. You are looking for a paid position that will utilize your skills so you can be compensated fairly. However, likeability and feeling liked are definitely important to both you and the employer. I don’t recommend playing hard ball, let them know you are interested.
When it comes to receiving the offer, don’t accept it on the spot. Ask how long you have to consider this wonderful offer and set up a time to come in and meet with them to discuss your answer. Face to face is best when possible because you can read their body language.
Emotional disconnect also means that you have pre-determined what it is you want to negotiate and what the ideal terms are. Having this in writing will prevent you from doing something or saying something you might later regret.
Step Three: Develop the vocabulary
How, exactly do you ask for more money? See, this is tricky and you have to find wording that somewhat closely fits your style. However, if you’ve never negotiated most wording will feel uncomfortable. Here are some ways you could go about asking for more money…
“I am excited about this opportunity to work with you and your company. I do have some concerns about the salary. What can we do to increase that number?”
“This is a great offer. I am interested in the position. I was expecting the salary would be higher given the responsibilities of the job.” (Don’t say anything, wait for their response)
Negotiating is defined as being win-win. Keep and display a positive attitude.
I’ve created a presentation and Negotiations checklist you may find helpful.
Here are some articles that might offer additional insight:
How to Negotiate in a Recession, Part 2 (Keppie Careers)
Hannah Morgan speaks and writes about job search and career strategies. She founded CareerSherpa.net to educate professionals on how to maneuver through today’s job search process. Hannah was nominated as a LinkedIn Top Voice in Job Search and Careers and is a regular contributor to US News & World Report. She has been quoted by media outlets, including Forbes, USA Today, Money Magazine, Huffington Post, as well as many other publications. She is also author of The Infographic Resume and co-author of Social Networking for Business Success.