Salary negotiations have been labeled a taboo topic for far too long. In my career, both employers and candidates tip-toe around the topic as if it's NOT understood that compensation is a factor (sometimes the most important) in finding and retaining top talent.
Did you know the percentage of men and women who negotiate their salaries are both less 50% in their respective categories?? THAT'S INSANE!!
On average, men negotiate their salaries only 46% of the time, while women negotiate even less, at 34%!! We are leaving some serious cash on the table.
I've heard it too many times...
"It's better than what I'm making now, so I'll just take it"
"What if that makes me look greedy"
"I'm grateful they even offered me the job"
No! No! and NO!!! That type of thinking is dated and self-sabotaging.
So let's talk, "5 Reasons You Should Negotiate Your Salary...EVERY TIME"
EMPLOYERS ARE EXPECTING IT: There is typically a process where positions are priced out before recruiting begins. This means, a compensation specialist has gone "to market" to find the industry average of how much someone in a particular role, in the same industry, location, educational background, and years' experience, should be fairly compensated. There is a built in buffer that allows room for negotiations to take place during the offer phase - this means that employers are expecting negotiations to take place - so do your research and take advantage of the opportunity!
IT SHOWS YOU KNOW YOUR VALUE: Most employers are not intentionally low-balling you when it comes to a salary offer. To be honest, most are either going off of what the last person made or what you last made (which is a topic in itself, but I'll save that for another time). Don't let the inexperience of someone else be the reason you miss your chance. Is it more than your last position, maybe, but this isn't your last position and frankly, how much you made at your last place of employment is your business. You know what you bring to the table, make sure they know it too. Again, do your research to back up your reasoning.
NOW VS. LATER THEORY: It's easier to negotiate salary in the beginning than it is to ask for a raise later. The chances of you getting a raise before "your time" (performance appraisals) are 1:23 vs. you negotiating your salary up front is 1:2. This again, isn't because your employer doesn't see your value; it could be because budgets are set well in advance and raises are usually capped at a certain percentage and time of year. Go for it early or risk waiting and potentially not getting it at all.
THINK LONG TERM: You never know what the fate of an organization is. One day they could be financially sound and the next, they could be filing for bankruptcy. Negotiating your salary to get as much as possible is in your best interest long term. Don't rely on incremental increases to get you where you deserve to be. Aim high, end high.
WHY NOT: What are you afraid of? "You miss 100% of the shots you don't take" - Wayne Gretzky. "You have not, because you ask not" - James 4:2. Shall I continue? No, it doesn't make you look greedy. No, your offer won't be rescinded. No, you won't be looked at differently. Yes, you will have spoken up for your future and your value. Yes, you are being brave. Yes, you are good enough. Yes, you are STILL grateful. Yes, you deserve it. We spend more time at our places of employment than we do our own homes - make it count, in both passion and paper - and by paper, I mean $$$
I hope you find this information to be helpful. Hold these tips close so you may find the courage to NEGOTIATE! Remember who you are and what you bring to the team. You've been selected for a reason :)
Until next time!