In the labor market, you are selling your labor, and a company is bidding for it.
- Employment is just striking a mutual deal.
- Negotiation is crucial.
Ten Rules of Negotiating:
Get Everything in Writing
Once the employer gives you information about the offer, write everything down so you know and remember the details.
Always Keep the Door Open
Never give up negotiating until you are ready to make an informed decision.
Protect Your Information
- A company is like a bidder. It wants to know exactly how high all other bids are and exploit that knowledge, often by bidding one cent more than the second-highest bid.
- You want them to be uncertain on exactly what it would take to sign you, so protect your information.
- Saying "can you do $90k instead of $85k," tells them exactly what it takes to sign you.
- Excitement is one of the most valuable assets.
- It will inform the company that you will be a hard worker.
Don't Be the Decision-Maker
- Do not inform the company that you are not the only decision-maker (i.e. you are talking with family members).
- They will realize the true decision-maker is beyond their reach.
- Inform your options that you have offers from other companies to build urgency.
- It shows that you are a valuable worker desired by many companies.
Proclaim Reasons for Everything
- Don't feel guilty asking for a higher salary if there is a reason for it.
- The more unobjectionable and sympathetic your reason, the better.
Be Motivated by More Than Just Money
- i.e. How much training you get, what your first project will be, and which team you join.
- Salary is the least important.
Understand What They Value
- Salary is the hardest thing for a company to give.
- If you want a higher salary, structure as much of the negotiation as possible outside of salary.
- i.e. A signing bonus or company stocks.
- Give companies a clear path on how to win you.
- Be clear and unequivocal with your preferences and timeline.