Getting that ‘yes’ call is great. For some it may have been months of hard work leading up to this point; sending out C.V.s, second round interviews, and experiencing countless rejections. It’s tempting just to accept a job offer immediately for fear of it slipping away. Many people do. In fact 2 out of 3 people will never negotiate, despite many employers leaving some wiggle room for a counter-offer.
You may feel that not asking for a bit more will help you avoid any awkward start with your new employer, although new research shows that not negotiating in your 20’s could set you behind other colleagues for years to come. Even costing you hundreds of thousands over your working career.
Here’s 3 ways to overcome the fear of negotiating better pay:
Start with your own confidence and self belief. You don’t need to say yes to the job offer straight away. Consider telling the hiring manager thanks and that you’d like a couple of days to consider it. This is normal. Saying yes too fast can also give your new employer the impression that they went in too high.
Take some time to think over the offer and compare it to what your original expectations were. Although the opportunity may sound exciting and a great step in your career, think about what value you’ll provide the company and why they need you. Remember they chose you for a reason, and in many cases employers are open to discussing a counter offer for the right person.
Go a bit higher than what you’d settle for. Even while the hiring manager may be exchanging pleasantries and general excitement about you joining, remember this is a still a negotiation. Almost like haggling for a TV discount at Currys, some simple rules still apply. If you want an extra £5k on top, ask for £10k. Chances are they might meet you in the middle.
A good general rule is to ask for 10-25% more than what you were originally offered. It may happen that the employer will not be able to budge one pence. If that’s the case, you can either accept the current offer or walk away from the table. It’s recommended that you don’t try bluffing it, unless you’re seriously prepared to withdraw. Chances are they might simply let you walk away from a great job opportunity.
Remember, it’s not all about the money. The offer that you are presented with could include some worthwhile benefits such as comprehensive insurance or travel perks. Weigh everything up. See how much those extra benefits might cost if you paid for them yourself.
Use genuine reasons as to why you’re asking for more. Keep it work related. Don’t bring up your mortgage or expensive motocross hobby. Instead, try reminding them about your experience and explain that you’d like to see their offer closer match the level of value you would bring. Spend time thinking through some good reasons on why you deserve an improved offer. This way the employer will be less likely to think that you’re just trying your luck.