Negotiating salary is not all that easy. Taking our chances and seeing what kind of additional income we can get is in our DNA as human beings, however when you negotiate for salary the wrong way, you can see dire consequences and sometimes even lose the job that you were going for.
Luckily, there are some tried and true salary negotiation techniques that not only get you paid more for your next accepted job, but also leave a good taste in the eyes of your employer. Here are a few ways to properly carry out this complex task of great salary negotiation:
1. Whatever you do, don't take it personally - Too often, we take salary negotiation as an affront to our personal worth when it has nothing to do with us, rather negotiating salary is based up a few factors one being what the employer can afford.
Put yourself in the shoes of the company and see things from their perspective. Each conversation should been even-keeled and end with your "thank you." Each email should be positively framed yet to the point.
For instance, for a job offer of $105:
First let me say that joining ABC Corp. is an extremely exciting prospect for me. I believe I can produce for ABC and exceed expectations for this role. After reviewing the offer, most points reflect what I hoped to see.
One point I would like to discuss further is the offered base salary. Currently I earn $100, and am ideally looking to progress to $115. If there is a time today we can discuss this over the phone, I would be happy to work around your schedule."
2. Weigh Risk and Reward - A key thing to remember about compensation negotiation is that it is still very much part of the greater interview process. Particularly if you are attempting to negotiate above 15% of your current salary (which in most cases is not a great idea), be careful never to come across as high-maintenance, entitled, or like a prima donna.
Since this is still an active job-seeking relationship, at the end of the day the hiring company still has the final say. With that in mind, if you decide that what you are asking for is commensurate with the market rate and your own skills and history, proceed professionally (as above) and know when to compromise.
3. Don't Kid Yourself - You have to be honest with yourself. If, when you objectively evaluate your own qualifications, you are less than half sure you will get the bump in base you're asking for, it's always better not to ask, but to prove yourself once in the job.
However, if you are leaning to the "yes" side of that half-way line, go ahead. The fewer strong candidates the company has, the more likely they are to give the hiring manager leeway. Other issues such as a very time-sensitive hire or you have a 100% perfect background may give you better odds.
4. Research, Not Guesswork - Have a clearcut logic for why you are requesting a higher salary than offered. Research what similar jobs in similar companies pay, and measure that number against other offers you received but aren't keen on taking.
What never counts as research is polling your friends or your Google+ circles about what they are making/what they think you should be making. Some basic Googling or a membership to Glassdoor will stand you in much better stead.
Any single process of salary negotiation might make you feel many things: nervous, excited, indignant, entitled, unsure, or ultra-focused. What is important is to take a step back from any emotional response, assess the facts you have gathered from reliable sources, and proceed in the professional manner you plan to carry the first day you walk through your new office doors.