How to Negotiate for a Higher Salary Effectively

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How to Negotiate for a Higher Salary Effectively

You probably doubt yourself, or perhaps you don’t know what to say to your boss. You keep on thinking about how to negotiate salary to your employer yet you still hesitate. However, you are pretty sure you have contributed quite enough to the company and that you really deserved a raise. What should you do?

In this article, six tips will help you on how to negotiate a higher salary for yourself. This is applicable whether you have been given a new job offer or you’ve wanted to ask for a raise for a long time. If you believe that you deserve more than your current pay, you should definitely keep and remember the tips below.

So, let’s get right into it.

Tip Number 1. Talk about your value.

This is basically the most important tip. And it’s probably why it’s the first one out here. To justify a particular bump in your salary, you need to be aware of what your value is and how you’re going to express such value to your boss or manager. Presenting your value isn’t just talking. You need to bring up any and all evidence that will prove why you’re worth what exactly you’re worth.

You could bring up instances where you have contributed to the company to boost profitability or reduce costs, for example. You could also mention how you saved time in certain areas and that you have been recognized as a strong performer in the team.

Of course, be prepared and have a list of these items in your mind ahead of time so that when you’re already meeting with your boss, you can clearly explain to them, one by one. You have to appear assertive and tactful when you explain yourself. At the same time, establish a calm yet confident version of yourself. Once you do it in a relaxed yet confident way, the managers have no choice but to really listen to you. In some ways, that is definitely going to help you get closer to getting a higher salary.

Tip Number 2. Do market research.

This is pretty much a given for a lot of people. While you’re trying to present your value, you also need to research what the market is paying for someone with experience and credentials like yours. With this, you need to go out, talk to headhunters, or talk to recruiters. They usually have the most updated market information, especially on the salary range. You could even try talking to people who have similar experiences or job titles as you do.

You can search on Google to find out the salary range. Although you better be wary with Google. The salaries there do differ, depending on the area and region that you’re looking at. So, whatever data you find through the internet, make sure that it’s synced to your specific region or your local area.

Other than that, the most critical thing to keep in mind when conducting market research is to use more than one resource to identify your expected salary. Relying on one person’s information and saying that’s the number that you want would turn around and disappoint you. It might not be really in line with what the market is paying. So again, look at multiple reliable sources, and determine an average number for yourself that you can reasonably accept.

Tip Number 3: Give a number, not just a range.

When your boss asks, “What are your salary expectations?” Most employees usually tense up and are often afraid of offending their boss by giving just one definite number. Instead, they give a range. This is the biggest mistake that most employees make.

For two reasons:

The first reason is that it allows your boss to give you a lower number than what you really want. Say, you provide a range, and the higher number was what you were targeting, they are surely going to go for the lower number. Giving a range already subjects you to that, despite wanting a higher number. So, why would you offer a range in the first place? You just have to give one number.

The second reason is that from a manager’s perspective, it makes you look a bit uncertain. It makes you look as though you don’t really know what you want in terms of salary. So, it’s like you want them to decide for you. This is certainly not the way to do it. You only need to give one number. Now, according to your research, whatever that number is obviously fair and deserving, and at the same time, it lines up with that of the market.

The bottom line is that there are two numbers to keep in mind when it comes to this case. There’s your, what we call, your “ideal” number and there’s your “willing to settle” number. Remember that your “ideal” number, if you got this salary, would make you ecstatic. You would probably be so happy because deep down, you know that was just more than what you expected, even with people similar to your experience and expertise. So, the ideal number is a bit higher than what you’d typically expect for someone who has the same level.

Now, the “willing to settle” number is what you know is truly justified. It’s what you think you’re truly worth and what you deserve. You probably think that you shouldn’t be getting any less than that either and that’s exactly the number you’re worth.

When you are being asked, “What are your salary expectations?” You want to give your ideal number, and remember that the ideal number is not beyond and over the mark of your “willing to settle” number. It is probably about $5K more. You give that number, and in most cases, the employer would likely look at it and say that they’ll do their own research first. They will look at it, and they will say, “Okay, this person feels they’re worth this much. However, we feel that the role is not up to that worth.” From there, they won’t go too far off from your ideal number, which means you are going to get the “willing to settle” number. This has been the number that you should truly be expecting anyway since that’s what the market is paying and also to people with your level and experience.

Tip Number 4. Go in with leverage.

Whenever you’re trying to justify a bigger salary for yourself, you want to ensure that you can leverage anything and everything in your favor. Let’s say that you are in a new job offer situation, and a company has given you a job offer. At that point, you should know how to negotiate a salary in a new job. You want to let the hiring manager, headhunter or recruiter know that. You say to them, “Just letting you know that I’m considering multiple offers as of the moment.” What that does is that it enhances the ‘scarcity’ mentality for the manager. Because if they really like you, they will be willing to pay more if they know you will be easily snatched up by someone else.

In a case where you may be asking for a raise in a current company, then you don’t have to bring up the fact that you received multiple job offers or anything like that. You shouldn’t directly say that you’re confident that this is what the market was offering to people like you. You may add hints about it but not necessarily outright say it. You don’t want to damage the relationship with your boss, especially if you don’t have any plans on leaving the company.

Additionally, remember to leverage like what we talked about. You explain your value. Talk about your achievements. Highlight all of them in a clear and concise way.

Tip Number 5. Wait for the right time.

If you are in a new job offer situation, the appropriate time you should mention your salary expectation is when the employer asks you. Don’t ever bring it up on your own. You could be tempted to learn how to negotiate in an interview. You might want to at the beginning of onboarding, it could be during the interview, or it could be at the end when you have received the job offer. Either way, you should only bring up your salary expectations when prompted by your boss. Don’t bring it up on your own because it makes you look hungry for money, and this is definitely not the impression you want to be setting.

If you are in a situation where you want to negotiate your salary with HR from your current company, then you can do it during the performance review, which is towards the end of the year and before the new year begins. Since this is the time when most managers also expect these discussions to happen, it wouldn’t be a surprise coming out of the left field.

On top of that, it will be an excellent opportunity for you to leverage your performance review results and the value discussion that you have prepared ahead of time. Not to mention, your market research results as well. In fact, you can use all of those to leverage and negotiate why you deserve a higher salary.

Tip Number 6. Be humble, polite, yet confident.

This whole salary negotiation process is simply one where you can communicate your value and worth to your boss. It’s not about being aggressive or greedy. It is merely about justifying why you’re worth what you’re worth. When you negotiate with positive intentions, it will only increase your chances of getting an equally positive result.

To end our article, you have learned six helpful tips on how to negotiate a higher salary for yourself when you’re in a new job situation or when you simply want to ask for a raise in your current job. Now, go ahead and good luck!

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