Negotiating for Salary

Diane Danielson in Ask and ye shall receive … a bad review points us to this post, Salary, Gender and the Social Cost of Haggling.Well, if that isn't a slap in the face, I don't know what is. If you negotiate for a salary that fits for you, you're “not nice.” If you don't negotiate, you can lose big over the course of your career.

(My opinion: Techies of all stripes tend to have a difficult time negotiating for salary, no matter what their gender.)

Ladies and gentlemen: ALWAYS negotiate for the salary you think you are worth. You may have to negotiate for these things:

  • More vacation time for the same salary (paid vacation time).
  • An earlier review time (3 months or 6 months) if you're taking a lower salary than you think you deserve.
  • More stock, and/or a shorter vesting period.
  • If the difference is small, other perks such as a guaranteed book allowance, some number of conferences per year.

No one else is in charge of your career except for you. (Yes, in Behind Closed Doors: Secrets of Great Management, Esther and I talk about how both the manager and the employee have responsibilities for career development. Your manager will rarely fight to get you more money (except in the obvious cases of discrimination).

To negotiate effectively, be prepared:

  • What is the job worth the company?
  • How easy is it for the company to fill the position?
  • What is the job worth to you?
  • How easy is it for you to find a new job?

Read Getting to Yes and know your BATNA (Best Alternative to a Negotiated Agreement). But don't just accept an offer without negotiating because you want to be nice. Know if that offer reflects what the job is worth and whether it meets your needs.

2 Replies to “Negotiating for Salary”

  1. A friend of mine was working at 3,80,000 Rs/per annum. He was keen to join new company. when he went for an interview he demanded 6,50,000 Rs he got the job later he refused to join and demanded 7,50,000. Still he got the job and he joined that company as senior s/w engineer.

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