Salary Negotiation: You’re Worth it

Asking the boss for a raise or discussing remuneration with a prospective employer can be a daunting idea. The thought of pushing yourself into the spotlight and assigning a monetary value to your skills gives some employees stage fright, while job-seekers are fearful that a job offer will slip through their fingers if they ask too much. Such jitters are unfounded!

All you need is to learn the steps for successful negotiation and apply them in an objective discussion with your boss or employer-to-be. Most bosses are prepared for such discussions, so don’t be afraid to grab your opportunity.

Preparing For Your Salary Negotiation

  1. Market research

Researching the market’s current rate for the salary range of your particular position is highly recommended. In fact, this should be your utmost priority! You need to clue yourself in on some reasonable parameters because requesting an excessive income could ruin your reputation, give the impression that you are money-grubbing and maybe even make you appear immature.

On the other hand, asking for too little would devalue your skills and leave you treading water on developing the best possible lifestyle for yourself. Along with the salary range, research your company’s employee benefits. Some prospective employers want to see your expected salary on your initial job application.

In this case, use your market research to make an appropriate offer. Don’t go down too much for fear of being rejected.

  1. Is it the perfect time?

Negotiate your salary only after the employer seems convinced of your skills and expertise. If you are a candidate for a job, the employer will first confirm that he or she is interested in hiring you. Only after this should you talk about your salary or benefits expectations.

If you are a long-term employee, ideally approach the boss after you’ve contributed a significant accomplishment to the company’s interests.

  1. Design your plan

Design a plan for all the steps of action and reaction which you expect to come up during the negotiation process. Rehearse beforehand to calm your nerves and prepare yourself mentally. Your plan should be built around all the important aspects mentioned in this article relative to your credentials and personality.

Salary Negotiation : Steps To Maximise Your Career's Worth

The Steps of Salary Negotiation

  1. Introduce yourself

Begin your meeting by introducing yourself and thanking your employer for taking some of his or her valuable time to sit down with you. You should begin in this way regardless of whether you are a potential new employee or a long-term colleague within an organisation.

As you enter into discussion with the employer, remember to stay calm, optimistic and friendly at all times. Keep a pleasant smile on your face! No matter how serious and unapproachable an employer may appear, do not allow yourself to show any aggression.

  1. Present and negotiate

Are you a prospective or new employee who’s negotiating salary for the very first time? If so, it’s critical that you state your expected salary straight away after the introduction step. Your entire negotiation will depend on this step. Don’t forget to also convey your other expectations about the job.

Go through a checklist of what types of skills, opportunities and values you foresee yourself mastering in the position. Demonstrate to the employer how valuable your addition to this organisation will be by talking about your merits.

For example, mention how much budget you were able to save for your previous employer. Describe how you contributed to expanding company revenues in the past. Remember to discuss how you see yourself contributing to the expansion of this organisation as well.

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Are you a long-term employee looking to increase your salary through negotiation? After the introduction, talk about all the gains you’ve made in the interest of the company. Provide data and facts to support your claims. Written testimonials from senior managers will particularly strengthen your cause.

Proceed to discuss any new plans or projects you’re working on that will benefit the company in the foreseeable future. Speak about the vision you share with the employer regarding the advancement of the organisation. This will demonstrate your dedication and emotional connection to your job.

Remember to ask from time to time whether your boss agrees with the points you’re expressing. Remain open to your employer’s thoughts. If he or she criticises you, accept the criticism with a smile, but refute the point and defend your position with a stronger argument that will dilute the criticism.

The next step of salary negotiation

  1. Don’t be too agreeable

If you are a new employee, you will find that some employers are rather cunning and will offer you the position before agreeing on a salary. In such cases, don’t accept the job immediately. Tell the employer that you will think about the job offer and reply within a mutually agreed period of time. Try to ensure that you have a couple of other interviews lined up within this time period.

In this way, you’ll be in the know about the salaries other companies offer. Mention – without sounding too boastful – that you have some other job offers on the horizon. Remember, however, not to exaggerate because what you say can be checked out by the employer to see if you’re being honest.

If you are a long-term employee asking for a raise, don’t give up too soon. Keep trying to convince your boss until you run out of favourable arguments. If your employer seems irritated, stop your presentation immediately and move on to the next step.

  1. Other options

If your employer doesn’t seem to want to agree with your salary expectations or raise, put on a demeanour of being understanding and supportive. Try to play down the salary increase and ask for an upgrade in work opportunities or employee benefits. The company might not be meeting its expected profit forecast due to other poorly performing employees.

In such cases, your employer might agree instead to increase, for instance, your health coverage. You might also suggest offering a raise or bonus on a semi-annual basis to you rather than the usual annual basis.

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C.E.O @ The New Savvy
Anna Haotanto is passionate about finance, education, women empowerment and children’s issues. Anna has been featured in CNBC, Forbes, The Straits Times, Business Insider, INC and The Peak Singapore. She was nominated and selected for FORTUNE Most Powerful Women conference in 2016 (Asia) and 2015 (San Francisco, Next Gen). Anna has 10 years of experience in the financial sector and is currently a Director in Tera Capital. Her previous work experience includes positions at Citigroup, United Overseas Bank, a regional role in Business Monitor and a boutique private equity firm based in Shanghai. She graduated from Singapore Management University (Finance and Quantitative Finance).