Negotiating Your Salary

5 Tips for the Interview Process

Posted by Liz Taylor Jun 04, 2012

A copywriter reached out to me last week seeking advice for an upcoming article for US News on Careers. Her question was: As people are going through the interview process, what is proper etiquette during a salary negotiation? Please keep the following tips in mind when negotiating your salary:

  1. First things first, let the employer make the first offer. It is best to push or delay salary talk until after you’ve secured the position. Think about it this way, if the employer wants you to work at their company; you are in a much better position of power to negotiate.  Make sure you let the employer know that you are really looking forward to working at the company but the salary is the only thing keeping you from moving forward. 
  2. Know your audience. Baby Boomers get frustrated over Millenial’s so called entitlement, so if you are young and being interviewed by someone decades older, you must demonstrate specific examples of your previous work and what you’ve accomplished to warrant a particular salary.
  3. Be realistic and have common sense. If you are applying for a particular position that is extremely competitive, understand that you might not have much wiggle room. Salary is only based on your capability of doing the job hired to do but more importantly the company’s budget. Lean on someone in the HR field to do a salary survey for you to determine what similar positions are paying. Knowing industry averages and market demand are crucial in your negotiations.
  4. Compromise. If a company can’t meet you at the magical number, be open to alternatives such as profit sharing, strong benefit platform, stock options, company car with expense allowance, etc. Some of these perks really add up quickly.
  5. Exit gracefully. One of the most important aspects of interviewing is to always be considerate and respectful to your interviewers. You never know when you will be in a position to meet with them again and it’s important that they remember you in a positive light. We live in a small world and a potential job opportunity is not worth damaging your reputation if you can’t come to an agreement.

Best of luck on your job search!

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“How refreshing and timely. From the texting generation to the baby boomers—the art of etiquette is sadly disappearing. Whether you just need a touch-up or a full immersion, Liz, is the person to teach you the skills to appear confident, elegant and professional in any business situation. Her energetic and engaging style will make this one of the most enjoyable seminars you have ever taken! Liz is awesome!”

—Chuck Bokar, Principal, Design Resource Center

“Absolutely superb! Liz has an amazing knack for presenting her concepts in a thought-provoking and clear style. Her ideas and suggestions would enhance anyone's ability to bridge the gap between business and etiquette. She clearly has a deep understanding of not only the topic, but the thought processes that go into creating better interpersonal relationships out of socially awkward situations. I highly recommend her and her coursework...she will help your business!”

—Brad Guck, District Manager, Administaff

“Liz, Thank you so much for coming to Indianapolis to help us grow our skills as professionals and as people. Your presentation helped us address issues with grace, candor, sensitivity – as well as fun! You were fabulous!”

—Betsy Hamlett, Director of Sales for Kenra, Ltd.

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