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Negotiating a Job Offer

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The Talk

Don’t give your salary number first.

If you throw out the first number, you might be negotiating against yourself, since it is possible the employer would be willing to make a higher salary offer than what you propose.
If the employer directly asks how much money you would like to make, respond by asking what the budget for the role is. In all instances, wait for the employer to say a number first. If the number is lower than what you expected, you can always make a counter offer.
If it still comes up short, consider negotiating a raise six months into the role if you meet agreed-upon goals.

Make all of your requests at once when negotiating.

Don’t make the mistake of negotiating each benefit individually so that you are constantly requesting new terms.
If you are going to ask for several adjustments to the offer, divide your requests into hard and soft categories, salary negotiation experts say. Anything related to pay, bonuses and stock options should be negotiated together, as part of your hard requests. Once you have reached an agreement on those, move on to the softer requests like vacation time, flexible work and job title.

Make it clear how hiring you will make the employer better off.

Putting the benefits up front - you should start by explaining what is in it for that person. You should detail up front how hiring you is going to benefit your potential employer.
“You want the negotiator to come away understanding why you’re worth the money”.

Don’t exaggerate.

Part of the art of salary negotiation is building trust, and if you are exaggerating your qualifications, the chances are someone will notice. That only gets in the way of forging the kind of relationship that would lead to getting what you want. Have a very realistic opinion of who you are, backed up by the facts.

Don’t give an ultimatum.

When you finally get a job offer in writing, but it falls slightly short of what you want, use a “yes, but” response. In a professional and friendly tone, convey your gratitude for the offer and then follow up with the reasons that the job warrants better terms. Lay out what you would be missing out on by leaving your existing role or the typical salary and benefits that a similar position would offer in your sector. Back up your requests with evidence.
Each touchpoint during the discussion is your chance to develop a relationship with your new employer. Once you receive a job offer, you stop being a candidate and you start being an employee of the company to some extent and the way you negotiate starts building your reputation.

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