Salary negotiations: 5 points of attention

Salary interview difficult? We share tips for going into salary negotiations well prepared. At your current or a potential employer.

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Everything you need to know for a successful salary negotiation

A crucial part of your career: the salary negotiation. Whether it’s a performance review or a job interview, for many it remains a difficult conversation. We share tips with you that will ensure that you are stronger and that you enter the conversation with confidence. Both during salary negotiations with your current employer and with a potential employer.

#1 A successful salary negotiation stands or falls with good preparation.

What do you want to achieve during the salary negotiation? What salary do you currently earn and what is the salary range you are aiming for? What are the fringe benefits you want (to review)?

Doing research in advance can give you enough information to start the conversation with your (potential) employer. Search online for comparable positions and salaries and ask like-minded people in your network. It will give you a clear picture of what salary suits your function and prevents a proposal that is not realistic.

When you are sufficiently prepared and know why you are worth a certain salary you will go into the interview much more confidently.

#2 Realize what you are worth

Research is important, facts give you something to go on. This alone is not enough. The strength lies mainly in believing in yourself. It is often a challenge to put yourself on a pedestal. Realize what value you add to an organization. Make it clear what contribution you make/will make to the company.

Current employer

A performance review, where salary negotiation comes up, is the moment for you to tell what you do. You do not have to be modest in this. Your good performance contributes to the success of the organization, this is a good time to highlight it. When you enter into negotiations, it is important that you indicate where the business value lies. Leave out the personal reasons. An overheated housing market is no reason for an employer to give you a salary increase; your good results are.

Potential employer

The move to a new employer is the time to make a big step in your salary. Do not accept the first offer immediately, even if it meets your requirements. Your interlocutor is expecting a negotiation, so don’t feel burdened to enter it. During this conversation, avoid uncertain phrases such as “I don’t know if there is room in the budget but…”. Let go of assumptions and state what you want.

When asked about your previous salary, chances are your new employer will not be far off. Avoid this. If this is impossible you can ask a follow-up question. What is the reason they are asking it? Is it relevant to the job? Keep control with yourself here. You can be firm in this: ‘My current salary is not important, it’s about what is an appropriate remuneration for this position.’ If a potential employer asks for your previous salary slip: you don’t need to provide it. It’s about who you are now, what job you are going to fill now and what salary matches.

#3 The power is in the communication

No matter how exciting you find it: stay away from unnecessary words. A negotiation requires strong communication and when you keep talking your words lose their power. Don’t add to it if you don’t need to. Let the (potential) employer do the talking.

Example current employer: “My salary wish, based on the results I’ve achieved, is 2800 euros” This is stronger than “I would like to earn 2800 euros, if possible, I think I’m worth it.”

Example potential employer: “I am currently marketing myself at 3000 euros.” or “An appropriate salary for this is a monthly salary between 2900 euros and 3100 euros.” This is stronger than “I have a salary indication of 3000 euro, but this is certainly negotiable. ”

#4 Take your time

Remember that if you agree there is no more room for change. That’s why it’s important to be patient and stick to what you’re worth. Coming to a salary agreement quickly is not leading, what matters is that you are satisfied with what you agreed to. If you need time to think about the proposal, ask for it. It shows that you are making a well-considered choice and it gives you time to ask others for advice.

#5 Think about the your future

Salary is important. It’s just not the only thing that’s guiding. Also think about the value that can’t be expressed in money. How high is the workload? What is the relationship like among colleagues? Are successes celebrated? You spend a large part of your week working. Work happiness is the greatest source of energy, not salary. It is ultimately about you enjoying going to work for a salary that you fully support.

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