Offer Evaluation and Negotiation Do’s and Don’ts
Here are some quick tips to consider when you find yourself in offer evaluation and negotiation mode:
- Do research the average salary and average salary ranges for the type of job you’re interviewing for.
- Do research the company to determine opportunity for career growth, company reputation, etc.
- Do withhold salary information for as long as possible until you’ve learned more details about the job, company, etc.
- Do concern yourself with the type of work you’ll be doing and the opportunity for growth as much as you concern yourself with initial starting compensation.
- Do ensure that the compensation that’s being offered is fair and within your desired salary range.
- Do keep an open mind when evaluating and negotiating an offer.
- Do let the employer make the first move into the salary negotiation phase as knowing the salary range will give you an idea of the interviewer’s negotiating parameters.
- Do be aware of your strengths and accomplishments so you can demonstrate the value you’ll bring to the employer.
- Do be open minded about the offer and maintain a professional and positive attitude during the negotiation phase.
- Do be realistic in your expectations.
- Do consider every aspect of the compensation and benefits package, not just the base salary or any one component of the offer package.
- Do thank the employer for the offer when it is made.
- Do remember that getting promoted is how you grow compensation the fastest, not by changing jobs the most often.
- Do think about the long-term opportunity versus the short-term opportunity.
- Do try to negotiate other components of your offer (e.g. shorter review period, sign-on bonus, more vacation, etc.) if the employer can’t match your desired salary.
- Do aim high when stating your desired salary range as you can always come down but cannot talk your way back up if you aim low.
- Do be honest about your current compensation as falsifying or inflating numbers is dishonest and can get you into trouble down the road if and when the employer verifies employment and especially past compensation.
- Don’t try to negotiate right after the offer is made as you need time to analyze the offer package and come up with negotiation strategies.
- Don’t accept an offer strictly for the money.
- Don’t get into a bidding war if you have other offers as it can and typically will backfire.
- Don’t accept an offer until you’ve seen all of the terms in writing.
- Don’t submit your resignation until you receive an offer in writing AND have been approved by the employer to start (typically involves clearing a background check and/or drug test).
- Don’t give in too easily and don’t overplay your hand while negotiating.
- Don’t inflate your current earnings just to get a higher salary offer as it will come back to haunt you.
- Don’t get overly aggressive in negotiating the salary you want and don’t negotiate using ultimatums.
- Don’t accept the first acceptable salary offer you receive unless you’re confident in and excited about the job, company and opportunity for growth.
- Don’t feel pressured to divulge a specific figure on an employment application and instead, feel free to write in “negotiable” or “competitive”.
- Don’t hesitate to discuss the skills, experience and value you will bring to your employer and how they will help the organization meet its goals.
- Don’t act too eager to accept, even if the offer was more than you expected, as most employers leave room to negotiate.
- Don’t allow the employer to rush you into accepting a job offer that you know you won’t be happy with.
Being in offer evaluation and negotiation mode can be trying, but its important to keep in mind you have to make the best decision for your situation and career growth.
To your success!