Negotiate your Job Offer Compensation

It can spring up near the beginning of an official interview, or sneak up before the meeting is about to close. Regardless of the circumstances, it is vital to answer the most important questions that surface between decision-makers and prospective employees.

Exact phrasing varies but the meaning is clear: “What will it take for you to join the team?” Or “What is it going to cost you to get here?” Does the very thought of being in such a situation make you hands clammy, your heart race and your stomach churn? Would you prefer any punishment rather then confront this question? Unfortunately negotiating a job offer frequently entails negotiating the terms of employment.

Get prepared and save yourself some last minute angst. Here are a few tips to help you face the inevitable armed with confidence and good advice.

1. Do your homework
Be prepared with the facts and figures to demonstrate your value to the prospective employer. Know your worth in the market. Research what comparable positions with similar responsibilities yield in your industry and location.

2. Make it clear that your goal is fairness
You want to be compensated fairly and in accordance with what your colleagues are paid and you want to be rewarded for superior performance.

3. Show that hiring you is not an expense but a smart investment
Prove that you will be able to add to the bottom line through increased sales, cost reductions, revenue gains, enhanced productivity and the like. Have tables or charts to illustrate the impact your expertise will have, and use actual data when available.

4. Never reveal an exact number for your desired salary or what you are currently earning
Give a range that will give you more room to negotiate for bonuses, benefits, time off, and so on, because no two jobs are the same and no two candidates are alike.

5. Have a bottom line in mind.
Think about what this opportunity is worth to you. What will you give up? Is there a necessity, a must have, or an uncompromising need? Then be willing to be flexible on the rest. Think about factors such as time off vs. salary or educational opportunities vs. conference attendance etc.

6. Remember that this should be a win-win for you and your future employer
Make sure that they understand that you want this job and you are confident that that if they agree that you’re the right choice, together you can make this happen. Take the focus off the dollars and put it on the chance to have an impact, find solutions and move forward.

7. Work this out with your future boss rather then their HR person
Only your future boss knows what they need and will get this deal together for you. It’s their budget; show them your skills right from the beginning with your abilities to negotiate for yourself.

I hope this article was helpful. Feel free to check my other Job Hunting tips.

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