Whether we are aware of it, or not, we use negotiation skills every day in everything we do. The basic underpinning of every negotiation is effective communication, to build rapport and trust, both of which influence your negotiations.
When it comes to employment, I coach my clients to always negotiate. Employers will make an offer to their chosen applicant that might include salary and benefits. Some will be company standard and may not be variable. Salaries may be job specific and fall into ranges that may include the candidate’s education and experience.
Let’s look at an example: $16.25/hr = $33,312.50. So, if you negotiate for even an extra ten cents an hour, or $16.35, gets you to $34,008 annualized. Some companies will give you additional money after you complete their probationary or orientation period (generally 90 days). Other companies will not re-evaluate your salary until your annual review. That’s a whole year away. Another consideration is whether there is growth and promotional potential.
Don’t be afraid to ask for what you want and what you are worth – If you don’t ask, you won’t get. However, it is important to do your homework. Check online salary sites. And, be sure your ‘ask’ is reasonable.
It’s about the ‘why’, not the ‘what’ that you want.
The Three Phases Of Negotiation:
Exchanging Information: I bring my experience and expertise; what is the organization seeking?
Bargaining: Here’s what I’m asking for; here’s what you are offering, how can we compromise on this
Closing: Agree to a win-win outcome
Once you have been offered a position you know you are their candidate of choice. Now, is the only time you have to negotiate. You don’t want to leave money on the table.
What To Consider:
Most positions have established salary ranges, low, middle and high. Do your research and take into account the location of the company, benefits offered (including vacation, sick and floating holidays, health and life insurance, and any additional ones such as 401k plans). Most benefits are corporate-wide so there is little to no room for negotiation here. Will you be relocating? Determine what the cost of living difference is between where you live now and where you are moving and adjust accordingly.
I have a client who recently relocated to Washington, DC., one of the most expensive places to live in our country. After she was offered the position, she was sent an offer letter. Fortunately, she shared it with me prior to her signing it.There was nothing about relocation costs, and she thought, coming from Arizona, the hourly rate was fabulous. After doing our research, she requested $2.00 an hour more and $1,000 for relocation fees. Her offer was adjusted to meet her requests.
Don’t leave money on the table!