A reader writes:
When I last moved jobs, I went from being a big fish in a little business to an “experienced professional” non-managerial role in a corporate environment, and I read a lot of your salary negotiation advice to prepare for what I knew would be a way more formal interview process than I’d ever done before. I came out the other end with a seriously impressive jump in salary – 50% increase plus stock options. Thanks for all the great advice!
I wrote some notes down for someone else, and I thought I’d send them in case they’re useful for your readers too.
I had a “salary expectations” chat in a phone interview with an internal recruiter, without them naming a figure. I gave them a target salary based on norms for my area, one I would have been willing to let them talk down on, as this would be my first job in this specialty. When they made an offer, it matched my request plus some really nice benefits, so I didn’t negotiate back and forth at all – I’d set expectations carefully, the company had been happy to meet them, we both won!
Stuff I did in the conversation that seemed to work well:
– When asked about how much my job currently paid, I talked about “they hired me at X, and since then my role has grown to include Y and Z, and my pay has reflected that.” I wasn’t lying, just being very indirect. I’d been being paid very well in contrast to my colleagues, but still well under what you’d expect for the role I was in.
– I used the mention of my role changing as an opportunity to tell the recruiter about the cool stuff I’d done and how it had directly grown the business, with examples: due to X we were able to take on 4 new people in [position], I hired and trained two direct reports, etc.
– Then *without naming specific figures for how much I was being paid now*, I answered the “what are they paying you now” question with “I would have to think hard about leaving for less than [amount].”
– A bit later, I checked in with “How does that fit with the range you had in mind for this position?” I got a really reassuring bit of information back from doing this, which was “it’s at the top of the range, but if we like you that wouldn’t be a problem!”
All in all, this gave me a lot of confidence in how to shape this kind of discussion with a prospective employer around what you can offer and what you’d want in exchange. Thanks, AAM!
This is great. Thanks for sharing this, and congratulations on your new job!