Whether you’ve just received a job offer or you are up for a promotion, salary is a very important part of the negotiation process. 

You don’t want to leave any money on the table. But many people do. There is a large portion of people who never negotiate salary or even bring up the subject.

Use these tips to your advantage and learn how to negotiate a salary for a new job if you find salary negotiation intimidating.


ways to negotiate salary if you find it intimidating.

know that hiring managers expect you to negotiate.

Hiring managers expect you to negotiate a salary with them. In the same sense that you want to get more, employers want to pay less if they can. 

The initial salary offer is rarely at the top of the hiring budget. Companies leave room to negotiate salaries because they know many people will counter-offer.

Salary negotiation is part of the process. In fact, it’s expected. Use the negotiation process as leverage to get a higher starting salary from your new employer.

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always counter-offer, even if you like the offer.

Always submit a counteroffer because there is usually wiggle room. Many employers will offer an attractive salary, but it’s not always their best offer. 

If you accept the first offer presented, you could be making a big mistake in getting a higher salary. You never know if there’s wiggle room in the negotiation process unless you try.

The worst case is the hiring manager will say no and stand firm with their offer. You won’t lose your job offer if you ask for more money. You can accept the current offer. 

The best case is you get an even better offer and a higher salary.

start negotiating from the top of your preferred salary range.

Salary negotiation is about finding common ground. The hiring manager has a certain salary range in mind, and so do you. 

Always ask for a higher salary at the top of your preferred salary range, knowing full well you’ll probably receive an offer for a little less. This allows room for a counteroffer that you’ll still be happy with.

For example, let’s say the salary listed in the job description is $50,000. The industry average salary for your role is $50,000 to $60,000. 

You would be happy with something in the middle? Ask for $60,000, and the employer will likely counter with an offer in the range of $55,000. 

If you asked for $55,000 right away, they may counter with $53,000. This is why asking for a higher salary at the top of your range is important.

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don’t reveal your current salary.

One of the advantages you have during the salary negotiation process is you know how much the potential employer is offering. 

They usually don’t know how much you make currently. A salary negotiation tip is not to tell the hiring manager your current salary.

Focus the negotiation process on your target salary for the new role. If you’re underpaid, revealing your current salary can make reaching the average market level for your role more challenging.

decide the minimum salary you’ll accept before salary negotiations.

Go into salary negotiations with a minimum salary in mind. Know what your compensation packages deal breakers are. 

While it’s all business, it can be tough not to take things personally at the moment. You want to leave emotions out of the decision.

Waiting until you hear the offer to decide could lead to you making an emotionally based decision. 

If you have a line in the sand, standing firm and walking away from salary negotiations, if needed, is easier.

have a list of ways you bring value as an employee.

If you are planning to ask for a higher salary, be prepared to answer questions as to why you should have a better compensation package. 

It’s always a good idea to be able to back up your request for higher compensation and be able to justify why you deserve it. 

Have a clear list of what you can bring to the table, whether business school or experience level, etc. Be ready to explain your value, why you are an asset, and how you can help the company.

always put salary negotiations and counter-offers into writing.

Get everything during the salary negotiation process in writing. 

Many things can be said and misinterpreted during the salary negotiating process. A written agreement is always better and easier to enforce than a verbal agreement. 

Get all job offers in writing so both parties are on the same page and in agreement with the employment terms and compensation packages.

Salary negotiation can be intimidating, especially if it’s your first time doing it. 

Like other things in life, the more you negotiate salary, the better you become at it. And you’ll be better positioned to maximize your earning potential.

need more help with salary negotiations? connect with a recruiter who can help you find and negotiate a job offer in your target salary range.

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