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Blog Insight & Commentary

19 Salary Negotiation Tips to Help You Earn More

Get what you deserve

Brandi Dye
Contributor

Woman eating and happy

Photo courtesy of Kal Visuals

Salary negotiation is a crucial part of your career growth. But we know that most women don’t negotiate their pay; more than half, in fact, according to InHerSight’s data, have never negotiated their salary.

It can be daunting. We’ve been taught that talking about money is impolite. But it’s the only way you will be able to make the salary you want—and deserve. Check out these 19 salary negotiation tips so you can approach your talks like a boss.

Do your research

  1. What is a good salary for the position? Sites like PayScale and Glassdoor can show you what others in similar positions are making to determine your asking range.

  2. Find the average salary for your position in your city. Slightly more specific, this is a good way to gauge what salary range you can expect to work with in a certain area, especially if you are moving to a new city or town.

  3. Talk to your professional peers. It can be awkward, but ask them about their salary history. This could give you an idea of what kind of pay is standard for someone at your career level, or even how they negotiated their own pay. If you’re unsure about how to ask someone how much money they make, this guide will help you have the conversation.

Read more: How to Negotiate Your Salary (For Career Newbies  & Industry Vets)

Come prepared

  1. Ask for some time. It’s more than okay to ask the employer to give you some time to think about a job offer. Take this time to research and prepare for salary negotiations.

  2. Start at the top. Your starting number and it should be higher than what you’re willing to take. Salary negotiations are a back-and-forth, so you want to give yourself some wiggle room.

  3. Know your “no” number. This is the salary that would mean your walking away from the job opportunity. This can be especially important if you are making a career pivot and can’t compare the salary for a new industry to previous salaries.

  4. Practice the negotiation. If your salary negotiation will happen in person, practice what you’re going to say. Recruit a friend to listen and help you tweak.

  5. Create a draft. Because it’s 2020, it is possible that your salary negotiation will take place via email. Instead of practicing in a mirror, take the time to draft and revise your opening ask. That’s the key to a polished and professional salary negotiation.

  6. Think beyond pay. Salary negotiation is also your opportunity to negotiate for more job perks and fringe benefits.Do you want tuition reimbursement? More vacation days? The flexibility to work from home? Bring those with you to your negotiation. 

  7. Get it writing. After all the negotiating is said and done, be sure to get an updated offer letter with that new, bigger number.   

Get in the mindset

  1. Assume you’re worth the top of the pay scale. Because you are! Show up with the number at the top of your range and it’s okay to expect to get it.

  2. Hype yourself up. Before you make the ask, get your game face on. Remind yourself of why you are great and deserve to get the number you’re asking for. And maybe listen to some Doja Cat.

  3. Call in the squad. Boss women are generally supported by other boss women. If you’re feeling nervous go to the group chat and let your girls give you an extra confidence boost.

Read more: How to Accept a Job Offer: When to Negotiate & What to Say

Making the request

  1. Don’t use a range. It can be tempting to give your future employer a range as your desired salary, but that just makes it easier for them to pick the lowest number. 

  2. Don’t not negotiate. Don’t accept the job without any negotiation. If you can’t get them to budge on salary, ask for more PTO or the ability to work from home.

  3. Prepare a brag-sheet. This is a one-sheeter that points out your most recent impressive professional achievements. Preparing a brag-sheet will not only give you something concrete to pass to your employer, but it will remind you of all the boss moves you’ve already made.

  4. Think ahead. It can be easy to use your past experience as fodder for your negotiation. But it’s just as important to let the employer know how you will provide value in the future as well.

  5. You’re allowed to be nice. Sometimes salary negotiation tips emphasize being firm or ruthless, which does have its place. And if that’s your style, go for it. But you can be gracious and appreciative of the opportunity as well. After all, it’s a negotiation, not a battle. As long as you advocate for yourself, you’re a winner.

The most important salary negotiation tip

19. Be willing to negotiate. It seems obvious but according to the Gender Action Portal, women are less likely to negotiate their salary than men when salaries aren’t specifically categorized as “negotiable.”  You deserve the chance to prove your worth!

Read more: How to Write a Farewell Email to Your Colleagues

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