Negotiations are the brick and mortar of the job world and yet is one of the most demanding and uncomfortable situations to be in. Salary negotiation (or when you have to ask for more money) is something that requires as much planning, timing and ability as a job interview as this is the opportunity that allows you to estimate and understand your net value to an employer.
These negotiations are uncomfortable, precariously balanced and challenge the power dynamic between employer and employee ever so slightly. This medley of balance and caution on both sides also favour the employer in most cases, owing to a sheer lack of precedent. This is why we will be looking at how you can ask for more money the right way.
Research in various job sectors has shed light on how more than half of the workforce never gets to salary negotiation. This is emblematic of a culture where negotiations and uprisings are discouraged and a social stigma around demanding money. You must first understand that asking for more money is entirely natural in a healthy work ecosystem, and it is in no way aggressive or uncomely.
Below we shall be looking at ways to begin the conversation and understand the right way to ask for more money.
1. Always remember that you are equal partners in a negotiation.
Negotiation is never a confrontation, and you must understand that your employer is not your adversary. In a salary negotiation, you are on equal footing as your end goal is to get you a salary that best reflects your work done and experience.
It is universally acknowledged that fairly compensated employees are more productive and serve longer. An employee is also expensive to replace, so the negotiation is between two entities at parity and wants the same end goal.
2. Understanding the person at the other end.
A factor that can sway any negotiation in your favour is understanding that you are negotiating with an individual and not a company. You must use a careful profile of the person you are dealing with and understand their concerns and constraints. Negotiating with an HR intern is different from approaching a senior manager as you can probe into the matter with the latter. But senior managers will be the ones who tend to break precedent, so you must keep this in mind.
3. Always research before a negotiation.
Salary ranges are constantly in flux, but it should be a priority to look into the latest trends within the company and further understand the constraints they have. Forming a clear idea of the company’s budget, incomings, and net profit could help you manage your expectations and better inform your negotiation.
Always rely on raw data to aid you in forming an educated idea on your expected salary or hike. Salary calculators from sites like Glassdoor also provide a framework that you can use to build on. You must always make your case based on facts.
4. Understand the existence of biases.
In an ideal world, salaries and performance incentives are based on performance and experience. Still, the world we live in has room for favour, prejudice and bias, and you must prepare accordingly. This preparation essentially must extend to how you negotiate with your employer, as you should assume that this bias exists.
Because of such biases prevalent among employers, a negotiator must learn how to work around them. An example is gender bias, where employers may see women candidates as very demanding in a salary negotiation. Therefore, in such a scenario, the request must be based on the team’s overall need and company growth, softening the demand.
5. Never give them an ultimatum.
An ultimatum where you almost threaten the employer if you do not get your way never bodes well in a professional setting. You may do this inadvertently, but one must simply abstain from outbursts that show courage or strength as in the long run it may cost you.
6. Capitalise on the right moment.
Timing is of absolute importance in any business negotiation and any employee must earn to capitalise on the right moment when negotiating a salary. Specific situations you can capitalize include:
- When you have another job offer – this is the time when you can take advantage of the offer and ask for remuneration that best reflects your experience your skillset.
- When the company is doing well financially.
7. Be honest.
Starting a negotiation on false pretences is not an ideal method to employ. The salary should best reflect your skills, and the employer must fairly reward your merits. Honesty is most often the best method to approach and achieve your earning goals. These methods will help you successfully lay the groundwork for any salary-related query and assist you in navigating the unsure and challenge ridden plain of salary negotiation.