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Salary Negotiation Tips

Published on Friday, 11 Aug 2017

While many factors contribute to any professional’s overall job satisfaction, compensation is one of the highest rated factors that leaves employees feeling dissatisfied and undervalued in the workplace. No matter how fulfilling a job or role may be, take home pay is crucial to anyone’s quality of life and well-being in and out of the office. Although salary is a critical component to workplace happiness, most professionals aren’t very good at negotiating better pay for themselves. Asking for a raise isn’t an easy task, but if you follow these tips from career coaches on how to negotiate your salary better, you’ll be well positioned to earn the money you truly deserve. 

Know when to ask. No matter how much you may deserve more pay, timing is everything when it comes to salary negotiating. If the company is experiencing a dip in sales or if budget cuts are rolling out across all departments, it’s obviously not a good time to ask for more money. Additionally, take stock of the emotional atmosphere before asking for a raise. While we may try to leave emotions out of the office, it’s not always possible. If your manager is experience professional or personal stress, don’t add to it with your demands. It’s crucial to catch people when they are in the mindframe attuned towards listening and being fair with their judgement.

Have goals in mind. It’s hard to make a convincing argument about your compensation needs when you yourself cannot put a value on it. Before you even start a conversation about money, come up with two numbers: your dream figure of how much you want to be (realistically) making and your bare minimum figure of what you would need in order to continue working for the company. There’s no need to vocalise the numbers during your negotiations, but it’s good for you to have them in mind when you go into the discussion so you know exactly what you’re negotiating for. 

Prove your worth. You are more likely to make a stronger case for receiving more pay if you can present your true value to the company’s bottom line. Use concrete and quantifiable examples to demonstrate how you actively contributed to driving progress by increasing productivity or revenue, implementing change and innovation, or streamlining processes. Facts and evidence are hard to ignore and the stronger evidence you can offer for why you deserve a raise, the more likely you are to receive it.  

No ultimatums or threats. There should never be a point where you feel the need to threaten your supervisor with an ultimatum. If you are truly so unhappy with your job that you are ready to leave, then it’s better to cut ties now and find somewhere else to take your talents. No amount of money will correct this feeling and playing the ultimatum card will only jeopardise any future opportunity and likeability you may have with your company and your manager. 

Think of the big picture. Sometimes, no matter how deserving someone may be of a salary increase, some companies just cannot afford more monetary compensation. Be open and receptive to other forms of compensation and recognition if you cannot negotiate more pay. Brainstorm other ways in which you can be compensated and valued, such as additional vacation days per year, a more flexible work schedule, tuition reimbursement, and other professional development opportunities. Monetary gain is ideal, but there are plenty of other factors you can negotiate in your favour to add value to your current work and help advance you professionally in the long run. 

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