Negotiation can be a daunting experience for most. Nonetheless, it is important to always remember that you are advocating for yourself. Whether you are asking for a salary increase or negotiating salary for a new job offer, the process can be stressful. Here are some steps to help relieve some of this anxiety that surrounds negotiating.
Do your research
Being asked what your salary expectations are can be an overwhelming question to most, especially if you are new to negotiating. The internet has made it so you can go into the process with confidence. Conduct market research and see what is the average salary for someone with your experience, education and skills. You can use different websites to leverage how much peers with similar backgrounds are being compensated. One note is to try and avoid basing your salary expectations on your cost of living or personal needs. This is less attractive to employers. Instead, target the market rate when negotiating.
Calculate your total package
People frequently get lost in the base salary of the job offer. While this is a large component to an offer, it isn’t everything. It is important to factor in your total compensation package when negotiating. Depending on your industry, the company and role will dictate the type of signing bonus, health insurance and/or relocation bonus added to your offer. Take the time to calculate retirement, stock options, equity or any other employee perks such as tuition reimbursement, childcare programs or fitness benefits. In conclusion, there are many factors that contribute to compensation above base salary.
Remain collected and flexible throughout the negotiation process
Once you have researched the market value of the role as well as compensation packages, it is time to finally negotiate and secure your salary and offer. A great tip is to negotiate over email. This allows both parties to put together calculated responses and keep track of the negotiation process. It is crucial to stay certain and confident throughout the negotiation as well as maintaining flexibility. To display your flexibility, start by providing a salary range as opposed to a single number. You need to be able to compromise and meet your future employer in the middle. The most important thing to keep in mind throughout the whole negotiation process is that you have nothing to lose and everything to gain by advocating for yourself.
Erika Daniel serves as a Director at RETS Associates, a national real estate executive search firm. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org