No matter what stage of your career you are in, job hunt is bound to get tedious and frustrating. After several rounds of interviews, sample tests and exchange of mails, when you think you have it all sorted, comes the crucial task of salary negotiation. More often than not, you know you are working too much for the salary you are taking, simply because you have made one or more of these common mistakes everyone makes when negotiating salary.
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If you have simply accepted what is offered, you have failed in the negotiations. This can happen because you are uncomfortable with negotiations, or because you thought of a figure close to the one offered, so you didn’t consider even talking about getting anything better. Whatever might be the case, your employer has the advantage in this case as there are many people who never negotiate salaries. The trick is to get over this inner obstacle by building confidence and understanding that you are worth much more.
Not hitting at the right time:
Time is money. That, is the golden rule to salary negotiations. There is a good chance you don’t wait for the right time and accept an offer too early, or keep waiting and the opportunity passes. This is one of the most common mistakes and can cost you thousands every time you make such mistakes. The time to strike is when the job is offered. Most employers don’t mind giving several days to decide on the offer. When the offer is made, the power shifts from the employer to you as he has already selected you.
Not researching enough:
There are industry standards and then there are company standards. If the company standards are higher, you need to ensure that you are paid according to them. You need to run a market research about the industry standards in different departments, and try to connect to people employees to understand their pay scale. Why get less when you can get more without really over-working yourself?
Not considering perks and incentives:
When you hear or think about salary negotiation, you only think about the monetary part of the compensation. However, even the non-monetary elements of the salary are negotiable. If employers fails to budge on the monetary compensation, you can always ask for longer leave allowance, reimbursements, incentives, etc.
The Mistake with counter offers:
While making a counter offer, you need to come to a common ground for negotiation. Asking for too much can make them disinterested and there is a good chance that you are not going to get what you want. When making a counter offer, you need to leave one of the components to the employers, and try to make little changes in the other components so that you don’t seem like you are asking for too much.
Not talking about existing offers:
If you are on a job hunt, you might also have other offers in hand. While we do not encourage you to straightaway talk about those offers when you meet the company for the first time, they are always a good tool to use when they have already selected you and handed you an offer. This will not only help them see what you think you are worth, but also validate it with other expert’s opinions, which are always great in the business world.
Not asking for documentation:
Documentation is the only way to validate what has been discussed over the negotiation. Once you have gone through the process of talking and deciding, you need to stress and persuade the potential employer to give you an email/printed copy of the new salary structure. That one document is going to make all the difference for you as talking never really holds too much value as long as you don’t have a contract.
Financial compensation is a great motiving factor to work. Why not work for what you are actually worth, rather than working for an amount which is not going to do justice to your skills, expertise and effort you are going to make on the job?
(Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of YourStory)