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How to Negotiate Before the Offer So the Ball is In Your Court

How to Negotiate Before the Offer So the Ball is In Your Court

Job offer negotiations can be complex, with both sides trying to achieve the best value. A hiring company seeking a high-quality addition to their team may be willing to offer a compelling package, but is there the possibility they could award more for a candidate with your abilities.

It’s important to receive fair compensation for your skills, but future job satisfaction can also enter the equation.

However, it’s possible to find a position that offers a positive working environment in a company that can pay for your skills. You can take several crucial actionable steps to ensure you successfully negotiate the best package before you receive the offer.

Avoid Common Pitfalls

One of the most common errors is to reveal your current salary before the company declares what they are willing to offer. This misstep can give the hiring manager considerable leverage to reduce their proposal below what they expected to pay.

If asked about your current package in a meeting, explain how salary is only one aspect of your interest in the job. Express your enthusiasm for the role and clarify that if the fit is right for both parties, you’re confident you can come to a satisfactory arrangement.

Sometimes, application forms include a question about your salary. You can leave that question blank, or put in a surprisingly low number and discuss this when you’re face to face and can more thoroughly discuss your desired compensation.

Understand the Person Across the Table

It’s essential to understand the person with whom you are negotiating. An HR manager regularly hires employees and is likely to have a set framework that does not allow for deviation.

An external recruiter may try to get the best financial deal for a company without necessarily selecting the best candidate.

Try to only negotiate with decision-makers who are more likely to consider your skills’ overall benefits to the company.

A boss will consider if you can bring more money to the company than the cost of your salary, and this situation is when you are in the strongest negotiating position.

Remember they’re hiring because they need to bring in an employee who can add value to their business, and this is a crucial factor that gives you power in the negotiating process.

Explain Your Market Value

With so many online and offline resources, it’s a quick and easy process to determine your current market value. Check on LinkedIn groups, ask recruiters and even former colleagues what the average compensation package is for a professional in your position.Explain Your Market Value

When you’re confident in your assessment, be self-assured enough to ask for what you’re worth. Don’t rush when explaining how you can help the company progress with you on board.

Before the offer, the process is all about both sides understanding what is on the table, so make sure you fully elaborate on your skills and how they can significantly contribute to the business’s progress.

Many applicants hold back because they don’t want to appear to be blowing their own trumpet, but by methodically explaining how you solve problems and increase revenue, you are giving the employer more reasons to hire you.

Which Aspects to Negotiate

Everything. This is a business negotiation, and it’s vital to ensure you are happy with your overall package. If you’re comfortable in your position, you’ll be more productive for the company, so a good employer wants you to know how much they value your contribution.

Your salary may be the starting point, but you’ll also want to consider if there are stock options, a company car, laptop, or cell phone provision and if there is medical and dental coverage.

There is no harm in asking if these are available benefits, but if you don’t inquire, an employer may not volunteer the information.

Ask for Slightly More

It’s important to give yourself room to negotiate with your potential employer. Always ask for a higher salary or more substantial compensation package than you are willing to accept.

When you receive a counteroffer, it’s more likely to be close to the figure you hoped for all along. Employers often expect you to use this tactic, and it can show you have negotiating skills that could be useful to them going forwards.

When the Offer Arrives

Even if the offer is more generous than expected, never answer straight away. Count to 10 before answering, and be confident enough to ask for a few days to consider the proposal.

If this is a position where you can envisage upward advancement, you could be at this company for many years. In that case, you should set a precedent for receiving a highly rewarding compensation package.

Accepting and Declining an Offer

Whether you choose to accept an offer, always communicate your appreciation by telephoning each stakeholder you spoke with during the process. They could be useful contacts in the future, and they’ll remember a polite and courteous applicant even if you decide not to take the job.

Believe in Yourself

You can bring tremendous value to a hiring company, so ensure you effectively negotiate before the offer. Let them know why your skills can make a significant difference to their business, and allow them to realize what a great fit you would be in their organization.

Follow the above tips, and increase your current pay level to reflect what you’re really worth.


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