Tips to help you negotiate your salary

Knowing how to negotiate your salary is one of the most profitable skills you can develop. It will not only play a role in how much you earn now but impact the amount of money you can expect to earn throughout your career.

Your education and experience, despite your years of hard work, are worth nothing if you are unable to negotiate the salary you deserve to earn.

Most people feel uncomfortable talking about money and many dread the thought of discussing salary with their boss. But there are a number of steps you can take to make your next salary negotiation easier. Here are five tips to help you conquer your fear.

Be prepared. Do your research ahead of time to find out what people in similar positions are earning. This will show your boss that it’s not about you being greedy; it’s about you being paid a fair, market-related salary. Talk to colleagues at similar companies, in similar roles about their salaries. Ask a recruiter what you could expect to earn. Use an online salary comparison tool to check what other people are being paid.

Know why you want a salary increase. You’re going to have to be clear why you feel you deserve an increase. There are three factors which shouldn’t influence your decision to ask for a raise. These include your cost of living, your previous salary and the salary your colleagues earn. Your boss doesn’t care that you’re undergoing debt counselling and need more money. Your previous salary was calculated when you had less experience. It is unlikely you and your colleague will be doing the exact same work and it is also unlikely you have exactly the same qualifications and experience. These factors just shouldn’t influence your next salary.

Make a note of your accomplishments. As you go about your work, make sure to note your achievements. These could include meeting particular targets, the times you have gone the extra mile, and the compliments received from colleagues and clients.

Practice. You need to be ready to have this conversation. You need to know what you’re going to say and how you’re going to say it. If you need to, practice in front of a mirror or ask a friend to pretend to be your boss. Before arranging a time to meet with your boss, you should be sure it is a good time to ask. The right times to ask for an increase include successful project completion, when you’re changing roles within the company and at your annual review.

Follow up. Don’t leave this meeting without determining the next step. Ensure your boss knows that you expect an answer within a certain period of time. If you are left waiting for a response, be sure to send a polite email reminding them. In this email you can include some recent accomplishments to emphasise your previous points.

Authored by: Pete Anderson

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