Negotiating Your Salary


After a rigorous interview or two, you’ve been told the job is yours if you want it. Now it’s time to discuss one of the most important aspects of your career. No, it’s not the room for advancement (which you already ascertained there was). It’s your salary.

If you have any say in your salary, it’s best to speak up. The money you make at this job can cap you at around a certain limit forever, even if you switch companies. Lowballing may sound like a good idea so you don’t get the job offer yanked from you, but this can hurt you in the end. So too can negotiating way, way above your value, as your potential boss may balk and again pull the offer.

How do you negotiate your salary in a way that’s fair and beneficial to both you and the employer? Here are some tips.

Know the Differences Between Hourly Pay and Salary Pay

Accepting any annual earnings that come with the job offer may seem like a no-brainer, but it’s okay to be a little picky. You certainly want to know whether you’ll be salaried or paid hourly, as there are differences between them.

Salaried pay could boost your chances of career advancement. You also tend to get better benefits than hourly paid workers. If you’re sick or need a day off, you get paid for this. That said, payment for overtime and holidays may be omitted, with little room for you to change it.

Hourly pay has more autonomy. You also tend to get paid for holidays, sometimes even time and a half. If you work overtime, you’ll get paid for this as well. However, the benefits may be worse, and if you’re sick, you don’t always get paid.

Know What You’re Worth

When people say you have to know your value, it’s typically a self-affirming statement. In the business world though, that’s not so much the case. When we refer to knowing your value, it means how much you’re worth as a financial asset to a company.

There are a lot of things that get lumped into determining your value. These include whether you have certifications or licenses, your skills, your career level, and your educational background. If you have experience with leadership, that can help you, as can your years in the industry. Your location also has some influence on your value.

Once you know what you’re worth, you can negotiate more fairly.

Present a Salary Range

If you have your heart set on a specific number, that can put your potential employer in a tough spot. This may have been the salary you made at your last job, but if they can’t match it, you might walk away.

You have to think of it from the employer’s perspective then, too. Rather than just present one unyielding number, share a figure range. This is more workable for the potential employer, and you can ensure you get paid what you’re worth.

Go Higher Than You Think You Should

Remember how we said that lowballing is not in your best interest? It’s okay to ask for more than even what someone with your experience should earn. You should expect that your potential boss will knock down your figure somewhat, so at least they’re knocking it down to a more reasonable level rather than even lower than what you should be earning.

Now that you have these handy tips for negotiating your salary, you’re ready to walk into your next meeting with your potential employer feeling confident. Best of luck!