How to Negotiate a Salary Offer
How to Negotiate a Salary Offer

Congratulations!  You’re hired.  You’ve done your due diligence, fought the good fight and you made it.  Email after email. Submission after submission.  Phone call after phone call.  Interview after interview.  You landed a new job.

Now that an offer has been made, you have to negotiate your salary.  Now you just need to figure out how to negotiate a salary offer.

Negotiating salary doesn’t have to be a tug of war. When done professionally and intelligently the process can be rewarding and leave you with a sense of accomplishment.

Attitude and communication are also factors an employer takes into consideration when negotiating a salary. If you are too aggressive, pushy or overbearing your chances are slim of securing the right salary and possibly the position.

Imagine how you feel about people who behave that way with you. Do you enjoy talking with them, or even being around them? Most people don’t and neither will a hiring manager. There is a time to be assertive and then there is a time to be humble. Aggression rarely accomplishes much long term.

There are two circumstances that will determine how you should negotiate your salary and which techniques to use.  If you have more than one offer on the table, the balance of control tilts in your favor.  If you only have one job offer (and that’s still very good news) then you’ll have to rely on other factors to get your desired salary.


Did the company post a salary range for the position? If the answer is yes, then you can negotiate within that range.

If the answer is no, you’ll have to use geographic and industry data i.e., a salary calculator, your existing or last salary and also factor in your financial needs.

Now let’s get to the nitty gritty.

With more than one salary offer on the table, simply choose the position you want. Then explain to that company that you have a higher offer but if they match the salary you’ll accept their position. Here’s something you won’t read in other salary negotiation articles.  Don’t get greedy.  This is where people let control go to their heads and they make bad decisions.

If a salary range is unavailable, you can use Indeed Job’s salary calculator as a starting point.  If you really want to get factual information, call the HR department of a competitor and ask for the salary range of your position.

You should also take some time to itemize your financial obligations, savings, any investments and a leisure allowance.  Once you know how much you need, use that figure as the base to establish your negotiation starting point.

Other factors to consider are your years of experience and your education level.  It’s important to use factors that set you above other candidates.

If you’re unsure how to initiate a salary conversation, here are a few ideas to get the ball rolling:

Is there any flexibility with this offer?

Based on my current salary/ what I made in my last position, I’m targeting a salary range of $$$.

I’ve done some research on the average salary for this position and I’d prefer to stay in the $$$ range.

Considering my X years of experience and education level, I believe a compensation amount of $$$ is fair for this position.

If you have not yet reached the salary negotiation stage, keep these tips in mind as you go through the interviewing process.  Remember not to sell yourself short or get too greedy and good luck!

Now that you know how to negotiate a salary offer, do you feel more confident discussing compensation?  Share your thoughts and tips in the comment box below.

How to Negotiate a Salary Offer

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How to Negotiate a Salary Offer