Imagine you’ve interviewed for a new marketing job that you really want to get.
And they like you.
You’ve nailed that 2nd interview presentation and things are wrapping up nicely.
But now you have to negotiate your salary.
And talking money makes you uncomfortable.
But negotiating your salary successfully has an impact on future job satisfaction.
So what do you do?
While not everyone is a born negotiator, there are things you can do to prepare ahead of time to negotiate your salary successfully.
First Take Stock of What You Know:
- Remind yourself of your goals, desired benefits and the basic you need to be earning.
- The salary range offered for the role
- Acknowledge that the company would have carefully considered the salary range they are offering. They will be aware of what is within their budget, and what is related to the specific skills and requirements. It is not likely they will consider significant changes to this.
- If you’ve been working with recruiters they will have been able to give you more of an insight. They’d have a history working with the company and will know what the typical salaries, benefits and future potential would be. They can also advise you about the salary range and give you feedback on whether your request is likely to be met or not.
Then start your negotiation homework
1. Know the role inside and out
Before you negotiate your salary, you need to establish how this particular role compares to industry standards. For example, does the role appear to have responsibilities beyond a typical marketing executive role? Are you doing things on a more strategic level? Will you actually be managing people? If so, then you’ve got a case for higher offers.
How would you be evaluated and what does success looks like in the role? Discussing this should give you an indication of potential for bonuses or promotions.
2. What’s the Average Salary for the role?
Find out what the typical salary is for the role. Do a search to find out the current figures and keep in mind that salaries do vary by area. A marketing job in London is likely to be paying more than other areas. Look on job boards to see similar roles with other companies, or check out a salary report like B2B Marketing’s 2016-2017 Salary Survey.
3. Is there future potential?
Does the company have a reputation of providing good bonuses and raises each year? If you can see yourself staying with the company long term, it may not be worth pushing too hard at the beginning with top end salary if you are likely to receive a raise in the next year or two. Again, you will have to weight out what your priorities are now.
4. Don’t just think basic
How much are the benefits worth to you? Healthcare, car allowance, etc. can really add up. A good benefits package can often be worth a lot more than an extra £1,000 on a basic salary. It’s not all about the money either. What about the work life balance? Does the role offer you reduced hours and an overall positive environment? Imagine what you could do then? Spend more time with the family or finally start that side project.
5. Prepare to defend your proposal
Now put everything together. You will need to have clear reasons as to why you are asking for that amount. For example,
How to respond to – “What salary are you looking for?”
“My recruiter mentioned that the salary range for this role is 25,000 to 30,000 and I believe my skillset falls within that. In fact, I feel my specific SEO experience brings a lot of extra value to the role. “
“I’m really excited to apply my skills to this role, and while it requires a lot more responsibility than a typical executive role, I am aware that the salary range for this role is 25,000 to 30,000.”
Read the reaction and see if there is flexibility for some back and forth.
When defending your salary requests, make sure you are careful not to list out personal reasons why you need the job. Like I’ve got a mortgage to pay. Or you’ve got baby number 5 on the way and have lots of mouths to feed. You must keep all arguments based on your skills and experience, and how those will benefit the employer.
Is it bad to immediately accept the first offer?
Even if you are ready to accept the first offer don’t take it right away. Don’t show your hand too early. If they already know your exact number in mind there is no room to work with! Thank them first and ask them when they need an answer by. Go home and have a think. They should allow you a couple days to mull it over. Let them know you are interested but don’t be pressured to give a response within an hour. Gina Belli, put together a great article about three phrases you should avoid when negotiating an offer.
Don’t get discouraged if they come in with a low offer.
You can counter with questions like “Is that a firm job offer? Is it negotiable?
“Does that include any other benefits?” OR “Could you outline what the additional benefits would be again?”
Prompt them to explain how they arrived at the salary amount. Make them justify it.
Again take a moment and reconsider the amount before saying yes or no.
Getting to the perfect number
Ultimately as long as they are offering you a salary that is within the expected range, you should be fine. You wouldn’t have started the process if the salary range was unacceptable. The real problem arises if they all of a sudden try to lowball you. Liz Ryan has a a great script that you could use if this should happen, which ultimately shows that it’s not the right company for you.
The way the hiring managers handle the process can give you insight on the company culture. You want them to be open and honest the whole way through and respect your time and opinions.
Not at 2nd interview yet? The use these tips to nail your 2nd interview.
Here are a couple other great articles on negotiating
General Skills: How To Negotiate Nicely Without Being A Pushover
Salary Negotiation: How to Negotiate the Salary and Benefits You Deserve