5 Key Things That Create A Win-Win During The Salary Negotiations

It requires tact to handle negotiation because both, the employer as well as you as a candidate, cannot keep emotions out of it


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As a job seeker, is there a right or wrong approach in salary negotiations? Not at all. Because depending upon your current career objective and status, you will need to evaluate what suits your situation best and accordingly handle it.  It is good to remember that negotiation is all about building your ‘value’ in the mind of the employer. Most job seekers miss the woods for the trees and lose out on good job offers by mishandling the process.

It requires tact to handle negotiation because both, the employer as well as you as a candidate, cannot keep emotions out of it. So do you want to know how to create a win-win situation? Then read on………

1] What are your salary expectations ? can be a daunting question. How do you handle it?

First, it is important to realise that once you give a specific figure, it can be a yes-no kind of a situation because your stated figure subconsciously becomes a benchmark in the mind of the interviewer for all further talks. A better approach is to first try and see if you can let the employer make the first move and give you an indication of what they have in mind. Try asking for a range instead of a specific figure. You can say – ‘ You have evaluated me and feel that I am the right candidate ( building your value). It will be helpful if you can share the range you have in mind for the position you are hiring’. Every employer would have a budget in mind. Assuming that approach does not cut any ice and you are again thrown the question back at you, you can try the second option.

2] Offer a range: 

“The worst thing you can say is ‘I want $X for this job,’ leaving no opening for negotiation by the other side. Better language is ‘I hope to earn between $X and $X.’ That gives the other party more flexibility.” – Bill Coleman

Say something on these lines– “On the basis of the research done by me ( builds credibility) on the market standards in the industry for roles like these, you are expecting a raise of 20 percent to 30 percent” or you can share a range with absolute figures instead of percentages. Sharing a range is important as it allows flexibility for the interviewer to discuss.

3] Take a holistic view: 

It is important to remember that a good job offer is not necessarily the one which offers excellent salary growth but a holistic opportunity offering great overall career prospects and learning. Maybe the salary growth offered is not as per your expectations but your current need may be stability which the job is offering. Or you may get to learn a new skill which will expand your overall candidature.

4] Responding to an offer lower than expected: Assuming 

You are made an offer which is lower than your expectation and you know that you are a good fit for the role, then instead of simply reacting and reflecting demotivation, say something on lines of “I appreciate you may have a basis for offering the hike of 7 percent, but I have got experience in the specific domain/category that the role demands & a proven track record. You can see that I have increased revenues from ..... to just 6 months time and have overachieved my targets for the past 2 years. I am confident of doing the same for your organization. You may consider the value I get to the table and let me know the best possible offer so that it is a win-win situation. (Focus on the ‘value’ you get and do not react to ‘price’. It could be that the employer is trying to negotiate and judge your initial reaction).

5] Ask for time to revert: 

“Take time for all things, great haste makes great waste”- Benjamin Franklin 

It is not a good idea to accept an offer immediately on the spot. Always advisable to ask for some thinking time (a day or two) to revert on an offer made. Evaluate it by studying the components like variable pay, bonus or other areas related to your personal priorities like studying time (if required) or travelling requirements and so on. The advantage is that then you can come back with a list of good quality questions if any and seek further clarifications to make a good decision. 

When you accept an offer the feeling for both the employer and you need to be that of a win-win so that you’ll start on a strong positive note.

Happy negotiations!

Best of luck!!

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house

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