Mistakes you need to avoid during salary negotiation

You nailed the job interview and got the job you wanted badly. Next comes the job offer and your employer wants to negotiate your salary with you. What do you do now? Open Access BPO, a leading provider of Philippine call center services, lists down some salary negotiation blunders you must avoid.

Most people think that getting a job offer is that stage in the job application process that should be the least of your concerns. After all, you’ve already landed the job, so there’s nothing to worry about anymore, right?

Wrong. Salary negotiation can be a tricky stage for new hires. In fact, it’s crucial to know how to deal with this step effectively since poor negotiation techniques can lead to unfair salary offers. There’s always the risk of asking too high or too low. So, in order for you to be a good salary negotiator, here are some mistakes that you need to avoid during this stage:

•   Refusing to negotiate

Because they feel uncomfortable and intimidated, most new hires opt to skip the negotiation part and end up accepting their employers’ initial offer. What they don’t realize is that how one asserts mutually desirable terms at this early stage can set the kind of work relationship they will have in the future. Aside from earning less, you may also receive potentially smaller raises since these are computed based on your initial salary.

More importantly, working hard while getting less in return can also cause emotional burden that will make you dislike your job. As long as you sound professional, you don’t need to worry about the employer withdrawing the offer if you ask for a high salary. In fact, an employer that doesn’t allow negotiations to happen will most likely be an unreasonable one during your actual employment. So, even if your offer gets pulled, you still end up saving yourself from being employed by someone who isn’t open to negotiations.

•   Naming the price too early

Revealing to your employer how much you will accept is usually hard to avoid especially if you’re asked to propose an initial rate right away or if an inquiry is made about your salary history. You need to be prepared for this situation. Try not to reveal your final price too early in the conversation since this will close doors for higher offers. If possible, try to decline discussing how much you were earning previously.

If you can’t do that, back up your salary history with an explanation that you previously worked for something you were passionate about without minding too much about the salary. Emphasize that you want to make a sustainable career this time and that your skills have significantly improved since your last employment.

•   Carelessly proposing a price range

If you hastily give a wide salary range like Php 15,000 – Php 30, 000, don’t be surprised if your employer offers you Php 15,000. Technically, that’s what you told him you would accept. You need to be wise in choosing your price range. It’s easy for employers to just go for the lower end of your range.

Try to narrow the gap as well. Setting wide salary range will make you look inexperienced in negotiating salary and will send a hint that you didn’t carefully think about your proposal. This may lead to your employer being more motivated to lower the range, since they know you’re not too confident about it either.

•   Negotiating based on necessity

After asking you for a suggested initial salary rate, your employer will most likely ask you to convince him why you deserve the specified amount. One thing that you should avoid is explaining that your financial status demands such amount and that you need to earn more to cover your living expenses. Remember, your employer doesn’t care where your salary goes or how you budget it.

Instead of telling your employer why you need to receive such rate, convince him why you deserve it. Focus on the value that you will bring to the company and not your personal necessity when negotiating your salary. Needless to say, this requires research and preparation, so you can effectively present yourself as an asset to the company.

Before you go to the negotiating table, it pays to know exactly what you expect from the job you are about to accept. Reflect on how much salary and benefits will make you feel motivated to do well at work. Anticipate how your employer will react once you start negotiating. Determine in advance how much you will be willing to compromise or let go.

Most importantly, keep in mind the reminders above during the actual salary negotiation. All of these steps will make you get a fulfilling job that matches your salary expectation.