Salary Negotiation: 5 Tips to Come Out on Top

One of the most important lessons in the business world is that absolutely anything is negotiable and that includes your salary. Once you have been offered the job that you applied for, the next step is to take a look at the salary and benefits package that they are offering. You should not accept it immediately without first taking the time to consider it thoroughly. The rule of thumb usually is that the first offer is not the best offer. Companies often leave wiggle room for any negotiation that might happen. You do not have to be an expert negotiator to be able to get what you want.

With these five great salary negotiation tips, you will definitely be able to come out on top.


Do Your Research


The internet is a wonderful thing. Several websites publish salary ranges for different industries and companies. You don’t want to enter into negotiations without finding out for yourself the general trend in salary scales. You want to look for comparisons between the average pay among the different companies in the industry and knowing the fair market value of your job position will allow you to benchmark the offer. Great companies who want to attract and retain great talent will at least match the industry norm or even go a bit higher than that.


Ask for More Benefits


People often focus too closely on the almighty dollar. Often times when negotiating for a good package, the benefits come as an afterthought. This is actually the wrong mindset to take. The benefits are just as important as your salary. When you and the company cannot agree on the monetary value of your salary, take a look at your benefits package. You might be better off in negotiating for more on that end. Great benefits can actually provide more value than additional money. If you are family oriented person, you might want to ask for an additional week of vacation leave or subsidized daycare. You can ask for a continuing education budget if you want keep your skills up to date. These are only some examples of the benefits you might be able to attain.


Compromise with Bonuses


Given the state of the economy today, it is understandable if the company cannot meet the base salary amount that you are eyeing. Instead of fighting over your annual salary, bonuses make a great alternative and go a long way toward enabling you to meet your personal financial goals. Many kind of bonuses are available, and you want suggest a bonus scheme that would make both parties happy. Bigger firms often give a signing bonus if they are able to hire quality talent. If a company is unable to give a bonus right away because of their current financial position, lock in a guaranteed first-year bonus or a guaranteed salary increase after your first performance evaluation. Companies are often happy to negotiate for performance bonuses because it is a win-win situation.


Look and Act Confident


When entering the negotiation arena, always look and act confident even if your knees are quaking and your insides feel like jelly. You know what you are worth as an employee. You want to find your unique selling point and use it and remember to keep a great attitude so that your prospective employers will be amenable to your demands.

Dressing well will give you a great confidence boost. Some people even say that wearing great underwear even if no one can see it can make them feel ready to conquer the world. Getting some rest the night before will also help you to be clear headed and focused when talking with the HR manager of the president of the company.


Practice Salary Negotiation Ahead of Time


If you are not feeling too confident about your negotiating skills, one of the best ways to prepare is to practice your negotiating skills. You can write down on paper what you want to get out of the deal and separate them into your needs and wants. You should always remember to pick your battles wisely, so choose where you would be willing to compromise. Also, take the time to write down the lowest you will go and keep that in mind when negotiating your salary and benefits. To gain more confidence when the time to negotiate comes, you can ask a friend to role play with you. If you can afford to do so, you might want to hire a career coach. A career coach can guide you throughout the interview process and help you with your negotiation skills.

Negotiation is an important skill to have when applying for a job. What other techniques do you use when you negotiate for better salary and benefits?


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