What NOT to do When Negotiating Salary
Ultimately, salary negotiations are a game – and like any other game, there are a few surefire ways to lose. When you're looking to bring home the most from this opportunity, watch out for these four classic pitfalls:
Four Salary Negotiation Mistakes To Avoid
Mistake #1: The “Starting Over” Mentality
When approaching the table to negotiate your compensation, keep a forward-thinking attitude. Instead of thinking that you're starting over from scratch, view this as the next rung upwards in your career ladder. Don't settle for a company that will move you anything but upward!
Mistake #2: Revealing Your Past Salary
Always bear in mind that the position you're applied for is a new job, with new circumstances. Be sure that, in your negotiations, your prospective employer is treating it that way, and keep your current/previous salary to yourself!
Also bear in mind that your employer is working to find out what your salary expectations are. Chances are, letting them know will do more harm than good. Provide them with a salary that's too high, and they may not see you as affordable. Give them a salary that's lower then they were prepared to offer, and you open the door to being low-balled.
Mistake #3: Being The First To Suggest A Starting Salary
If possible, never be the first to suggest a starting salary. If your employer is not sure what it'll take to recruit you, they're much more likely to start with an offer that's closer to their best. And, like divulging your current salary, you risk limiting yourself with too low of a pitch, or scaring them away if your expectations are perceived as too high.
If you're backed into a corner before the job offer is provided, say something along the lines of “Right now, my primary goal is determining if I'm the best person for this position – can I get back to you on that?”
Mistake #4: Being Too Eager To Leave Your Current Job
You love(d) your current job. Your job? Oh, yes, you love(d) it.
At no time during your interview should you speak ill of your current or previous job – and that goes for when you're accepting your job offer as well. As Voltaire says, “Never argue at the dinner table, for the one who is not hungry always gets the best of the argument.” If you look too hungry for the position, you will downplay your employer's sense of urgency in hiring you.
We Want to Hear You!
Have you (or anyone you've interviewed) made these mistakes? Do you know of any new mistakes that should be added to this list? Say your piece in the comments below!
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