I met with a mentor/NYU professor today to talk about salary negotiation, and it’s a good thing I did… HR reached out with an offer two hours later! He coached me through the negotiation process, and it was really eye-opening. Here’s what I learned:
- Women typically don’t negotiate. We are socialized to be accommodating and to avoid conflict… and many women see asking to negotiate as a way of starting conflict. This isn’t true! Human Resources is trying to save their company money, so they are probably going to offer you less than what you are worth and hope you’ll take it. You’re not being rude or ungrateful— you’re standing up for yourself.
- Never, ever accept the first offer. As I said above, HR is trying to save money. They’re not going to offer you all they can afford right away. My mentor advised showing zero emotion when you get your offer, thanking them politely, and asking if you can meet a few days later to talk about salary. This will give HR time to figure out how much room they have for negotiation, and it will give you time to talk to a mentor and prepare.
- Do your homework. Use websites like salary.com and glassdoor.com to see what other people in your field (with your experience) are making. This will give you a good idea of what to aim for. Factor in your education, years of experience, and any skills you may have that other candidates wouldn’t. Usually, the highest selling point for you is your education and years of experience. So, if you don’t have a Master’s in your field, be sure to focus heavily on your work experience.
- Figure out what is important to you. Do you want a higher salary? Or would you rather have a few more vacation days? What about funds for professional development (think: conferences, classes, etc)? If you can’t get a higher salary, think about what you would like instead.
- Be conscious of your language. Silence is your friend. When it comes time for the actual negotiation, don’t get emotional or grovel or worry about sounding “too demanding.” Be calm, firm, but polite. Instead of saying “thank you very much for your offer, but I really was hoping to make X, so I would appreciate it if you would consider this,” say “Thank you for your offer. I am interested in the position, but I think X would be a more appropriate amount.” Then: silence. Make them talk first. This part was really tough for me to grasp, because a lot of the things my mentor said felt rude or demanding.
- Ask for 10% over what they offer you. That’s the question, isn’t it? What number do I throw out so I end up with one I want? Well, the standard is that you ask for 10% more than what you’re offered, and then HR will come back with 3-5% over their original offer. However, if you feel like you’re being lowballed (to the point where even 10% over the offer is not enough) you’ll want to talk to a mentor in your field and see what’s going on.
You may ask how this advice panned out for me… and that’s an interesting story. I was offered $3k more than I expected, but $2k less than I wanted to end up with and they said there’s no room for negotiation… so I didn’t even get to use all of this awesome advice!
I think what I’m going to do is accept the offer, rock at my job for the first 6 months to a year, and then ask for a raise or maybe some more vacation time. If anyone has anything to add to this, please reblog and add your thoughts… and then tag it with everything you think is appropriate. I want as many people as possible to see this info!
totally reblogged this on the wrong tumblr— phone app is dead to me.