• Pooja Salian

How to Negotiate Your Salary Like an Expert

Not negotiating to get the salary that you deserve would not just affect the immediate next 1, 2 or 3 years but could easily have a snowball effect on your entire career. Imagine a scenario that you accepted a job a job offer at 10% less that your expectation. Including your year on year increment, your next job change and subsequent changes, it will have an overall snowball effect and cost you a huge amount of loss in your career.

However, during a job offer is not the only scenario wherein you get an opportunity to negotiate your salary. There could be other instances in your career where you get such an opportunity too, eg. –

  • You’ve upskilled yourself, through a recent degree or certification, which could add value to your current role or organization

  • You are being considered for a promotion or a role change within your organization which calls for additional roles and responsibilities or increase in the relevancy of skills required

  • Your company is being bought out or acquired by another larger company, and your role is considered as relevant to continue or upgrade in the new scheme of things

  • There is a significant change in the management / tope leadership or even in your immediate reporting which opens up a good opportunity to have a discussion or conversation around compensation

But having said that it is much easier to negotiate your salary before you join an organization rather than once you are a part of it. Keeping that in mind below are a few tips and tricks to help you do so:

Do your research - Familiarization with industry trends

Ensure that you have done a detailed research and update yourself with the industry trends and salary practices, especially corresponding to your skills, qualifications and years of experience. There are many sites, which could help you like Glassdoor, Indeed or LinkedIn. You could also speak to your colleagues or friends and other professionals in your network to understand the standard benchmarks

Building a case or justification

Once you have received an offer, while making a counter-offer try to build a solid justification and case around it. In case, you have invested in upskilling yourself with certain certifications and qualifications, which could be of value to the joining role, highlight those. Also, try to bring examples to the table of past scenarios at the workplace where you could highlight your skills and accomplishments and help build a case.

Also remember it’s not just about the salary

In today’s day and age you have to keep you mind open to innovative methods of compensation. The number that you are looking at need not be a part of your monthly or annual compensation. A company could also look at accommodating through other perquisites and benefits like additional days of paid vacations, medical insurance benefits for self and family, transport and meal allowances, or even work from home allowances, which is very relevant in today’s times. Hence, keep an open mind and approach while negotiating.

Keep a positive approach

While negotiating it is also very important to approach the discussion with a collaborative spirit and not an argumentative one. Remember the objective is to reach a win-win conclusion and get the best deal out of an opportunity that you are already keen on taking up. Your tone and voice needs to project confidence without being rude and you need to know when to stop, without going overboard. Try practicing with a friend or colleague to rehearse amply before the actual discussion.

Take everything in writing

Most companies would finally issue an offer / appointment letter basis all agreed terms post concluding the negotiations. However, if not already shared do request the company to share written documentation including all agreed terms – like compensation, any benefits or allowances like joining bonus or moving allowance, also including all roles and responsibilities, base location, travel requirements, etc. Ensure both you and your employer sign this document, either physically or digitally prior to joining.

Salary negotiation need not be the harrowing experience one always tries to avoid. In fact, negotiations are a healthy way to build a strong relationship with your potential employer and ensure you join the job with a positive and motivated mindset. Brushing your skills with respect to salary negotiations and practicing these tricks over a period will certainly help propel your career growth.

All the Best!

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