Salary Negotiation Tips
Yet, executive recruiters and human resources executives do not hesitate to request your current and recent compensation, including every last perk.
Be prepared for this question at the end of the interview, butnever initiate this discussion topic. The tone of your reply can kill your candidacy.
Advance knowledge of the salary range budgeted for the position can help you formulate a winning answer to the salary question.
Compensation components for most jobs include an hourly rate orannual base salary plus performance bonus. Sales positions normally discuss compensation in terms of total income, which includes base salary plus expected commission if target sales are achieved.
Senior executive pay packages may include deferred compensation, a car allowance, stock options, a percent of company ownership, club memberships, use of company jet, and other perks. Be prepared to provide the list only if requested to do so.
The winning approach to the salary request in the first interview is to convey the appearance of being flexible on the issue. If you should receive an offer at the end of the game, you will have the opportunity to negotiate as firmly as you wish when you are in a position of strength.
If you are reasonably certain that the company budgeted a salaryhigher than your most recent earnings, you should state in a matterof- fact tone your current or most recent hourly rate or base salary, the percent of performance bonus or amount of commission received, and other compensation components you believe are significant.
The manner in which you state your compensation should leavethe impression that you merely replied to the question and the response was not a demand that the company meet or exceed thatamount.
The concern job seekers should have when describing theirsalary is the risk of being perceived as caring more about money than company and position.
If you are reasonably certain that the base budgeted for the position is less than you were earning, the interview could reach an untimely conclusion. Depending on how much the company is willing to pay, the best you can hope for when negotiating after you receive an offer is for the company to match your current or recent base.
When asked for your compensation in this situation, there are two options that can save your candidacy if you have flexibility on this important issue and want to win the game. These options should also be successful if you are not sure of the targeted salary.
Observe the interviewer’s reaction. If the company’sbudgeted base is dramatically lower than yours, the interviewer might tell you so and say that there is no way the two of you can ever get together on salary.
Your reply to that gloomy prospect is to ask what their targeted base is. If you are willing to take a cut in salary for the position, then, without appearing desperate, you should convincingly state that the close match with your skills and the experience you could gain make the lower salary acceptable. If company interviewers are impressed with your credentials, flexibility on both sides could lead to a successful compromise.
For example, suppose the company is budgeting $60,000 for the position and the salaries in your recent three positions within the past five years were $70,000, $60,000, and $55,000. If you state the three salaries in response to a request for your recent salary, interviewers might make the assumption that you will accept a lower salary, a discussion could be averted, and you could still be in the game.