Five Negotiation No-NosMonster Salary and Negotiation Expert
While it's difficult to make
definitive statements about what to do and what not to do in every negotiation
situation, there are some definitive pitfalls to be aware of before entering the
negotiation process. Here are five of the most common no-nos
Initiating Negotiations Too Soon
important here. The appropriate time to negotiate is when a formal offer has
been made. If the offer meets your needs, by all means accept it. It's a mistake
to negotiate just for the sake of negotiating, but don't assume you can't
negotiate at all. There's nothing wrong with asking for time to consider the
offer or outright asking if the offer is negotiable.
Only Negotiating Salary
While money is the most
frequently negotiated piece of the compensation package, it's not the only one.
It's also true that many employers have benefits such as vacation time and
health insurance coverage that are established by company policy and are
But other parts of the package may be
negotiable. They include signing bonuses, unpaid leave, relocation expenses,
flextime, severance, and predetermined timeframes for salary reviews.
the end, it's important to maintain some salary flexibility until you've seen
the whole package, including benefits. For instance, the job you're seeking may
have a built-in profit-sharing plan, a great company-funded health insurance
program, or a bonus or incentive program, which all have real dollar value.
Mistrusting the System
seekers operate under the assumption that employers will, without exception, try
to lowball them, no matter how well-qualified they are for a position. While
there are employers who pay employees below industry standard, you should never
enter a negotiation with a them-versus-me mentality. And don't assume that just
because you've researched a job's market value, you'll get an offer within that
range. While market averages are good barometers of pay averages, they're just
that -- averages.
The fact is, many companies have a predetermined
budget for every position and have pay ranges and benefit packages based on
their established compensation hierarchies. An offer may boil down to a
take-it-or-leave-it proposition, only because that's all the budget allows for
the position, not because the employer is trying to take advantage of you.
Assuming Your Degree Entitles You to a Higher
Increasingly, having an advanced education is
nothing more than a threshold requirement that enables prospective employers to
narrow down the pool of applicants to a manageable size. If you have relatively
little real-world work experience, your degree may keep you in the running, but
it won't entitle you to a higher salary.
Also, don't assume your degree
is all you have to offer the employer. Having significant work experience will
probably carry more weight than a degree alone. There's a major difference
between job-performance potential, which a degree can suggest, and past job
performance, which indicates previous work experience and achievements.
Believing Every Negotiation Will End in Your
No matter what you bring to the negotiating table, it's
naive to assume you'll always get what you want. Negotiating isn't a win-lose
proposition; it's a compromise, and you should expect that going into
discussions. Very few of us are in such demand that we can write our own
tickets. That doesn't mean you should settle for any offer that comes your way,
but sometimes an agreement won't be made. And accepting a job just for the sake
of a paycheck could lead to mutual dissatisfaction. Ultimately, it could be
better for you to continue your job search