Are you wondering how to negotiate your salary for a new job? Do you want some salary negotiation techniques that will help you get your ideal compensation?

If so, you’re in the right place, because, here, we’ll talk about how to properly negotiate your salary so that you can get the compensation you deserve.

Before we get into the proven methods for negotiating your salary, remember that salary negotiations should not take place until after you’ve received a job offer. Don’t jump the gun on this one. This is not something you’ll discuss during the first or even second interview.

Take your time and be patient during this process.

Tip 1 – Know Your Number

Before you even enter salary negotiations, know your number.

This is number you’ll have in mind before you apply for the position. Knowing your number will help you better tailor your job search to positions that align with your skills and abilities.

This number can be somewhere between your bare minimum amount (the lowest amount you’re willing to take before you walk away from the position) and your ideal amount (the amount that will make you beyond thrilled if you were offered it).

To help you refine this number, do some research. Start with resources like Glassdoor, Indeed, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics. You can enter the job title and then narrow your search by a specific location.

Also, don’t be afraid to reach out to others in similar positions to find out what they are earning.

And if you are working with a recruiter, get as much information as you can about the salary before you apply for the position.

When the time comes, give an exact number, not a range. It’s been proven that those that ask for an exact number get closer to their desired amount than those that ask for a range.

Tip 2 – List Your Worth 

Before you negotiate your salary, make a list of your greatest career accomplishments. Jot down specific problems you’ve solved in your previous positions that demonstrate ways you’ve done things like any of the following:

  • cut costs
  • increased productivity
  • saved your boss or colleagues time
  • improved processes
  • enhanced the quality of something.

Provide examples with impact and be able to make a direct correlation between what you’ve accomplished and the new position. Adding these to your list will give you a greater sense of confidence and determination when you enter salary negotiations.

Commit (or re-commit) now to strive for improvement in your current work situation, especially if it’s difficult for you to write this list of personal career achievements.

Work at becoming as good as you can be at the most important functions of your job. Produce results that are highly valued. Look for opportunities to work more efficiently, to improve quality and customer satisfaction, and to save your organization money.

Make a point of offering new ideas that could enhance the business. Strive to get more work done by being efficient, overcoming procrastination, and reducing interruptions.

Try to understand the work style of your co-workers and of other groups you work with.

Tip 3 – Let Them Make the First Offer

Do your best to let your potential employer make the first offer. This gives you a better starting point and more leverage to ask for your ideal salary.

If you tell them how much you’ll take before they make the first offer, you risk the chance of overpricing or under-valuing yourself.

There’s a famous headhunter from the 80’s, Noel Smith-Wenkle, that has a proven method for answering any questions about salary before you’ve been presented with an offer. For example, if you’re asked what your salary expectations are, respond with something like:

“I am much more interested in doing (type of work) here at (name of company) than I am in the size of the initial offer.”

If the potential employer does not respond with their offer and you are pressed again for your salary expectations, respond with:

“I will consider any reasonable offer.”

If they persist again, which will only be about 30% of the time:

“You are in a much better position to know how much I’m worth to you than I am.”

Holding out until they’ve made the first offer sets you up for a higher salary.

Tip 4 – Have Courage

Some people fear that negotiating for a higher salary is presumptuous and will ruin their chances of getting the job.

This is not the case!

Most hiring managers, recruiters, and employers expect some type of salary negotiation. You won’t get what you want if you don’t ask for it.

This is especially true for women. In fact, studies have revealed that women are less likely to negotiate their salary than men. So all my lady friends out there, build up your courage and ask.

With that in mind, remember that you only have so much wiggle room once the offer has come in.

Tip 5 – Get Creative

Think outside of the box. If you are offered a salary that you are not completely satisfied with, consider negotiating other types of compensation, such as as bonuses, a flexible schedule, extra vacation time, or maybe even a clothing allowance.

Most organizations know that candidates are enticed by these types of benefits, so they’ll be open to making them part of your compensation package.

Tip 6 – Role Play

Once of the best things you can do before you enter salary negotiations is to role play with a friend or colleague. Practice your response to an initial offer that is not ideal.

At the same time, practice your response to an offer that is more than ideal. As you consider your response, remember the importance of silence or what I like to the “The Pause.” In his famous book, Negotiating Your Salary: How to Make $1000 a Minute, Jack Chapman mentions a classic strategy called “The Flinch.”

It’s actually been proven that if you pause after you’ve heard the initial offer, it puts a little bit of pressure on the other person and allows you some time to think.

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