Tips on Negotiating a Job Offer

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Many people, particularly those without experience in making deals, don’t negotiate job offers. Unfortunately, this decision can hurt you. Money left on the table early on can stay there for a long time, whereas a well-negotiated package for your first job can help you throughout your career. Keep the following in mind when negotiating with your employer for a job offer.

– Try to let the employer offer first. Many employers will ask about your last salary before making an offer, but providing them with this information can undermine your footing or even cause them to screen you out of a job.

– Be prepared to convince the employer why you deserve something, rather than just asking for it. The people you’re negotiating with have supervisors to whom they have to justify their decisions, and providing them with a solid explanation of why you deserve certain compensation – like what market norms are for someone with your experience and skill set – will help them do so.

– Negotiate everything at once. If there are multiple parts of the offer that you’d like to negotiate, bringing them all to the employer’s attention at the same time lets them look at your requests holistically and figure out something that will work for the both of you. Bringing things up one at a time instead runs the risk of drawing out the process and annoying them.

– Be confident and enthusiastic. Smile throughout the negotiations process, and always let the person you’re negotiating with know how excited you are about the opportunity to work for them. Treat the terms of your employment as a business detail that you’re sure can be worked out.

– Become familiar with their needs. Negotiation is largely a process of understanding what the person you’re working with needs and how you can make sure that your interests align with theirs. Do your research on the company and what they might be willing to give so that you can work out a deal that offers maximum benefits to both parties.

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