The salary question is a tricky one to answer for any job seeker. Moreover, your answer could possibly break your chance on landing the job. To make it even worse, we won’t get the salary that we want most of the times.
Yes, salary negotiation is not that simple. Most job seekers aren’t sure about when or how to ask for the salary they want. Here’s some tips on facing the salary question during a job interview:
1. Don’t lie about your current/last salary
Everybody wants to get a better salary on their next job. That’s why, sometimes they tend to lie when the interviewer asks, “How much is your current salary (or the salary you were drawing at your last job)?”.
However, it’s not that hard for a company to check the truth, such as through a reference call. Of course, you don’t want to start a new job with a lie. If you are afraid to answer this question, try to postpone this subject. Never try to negotiate anything —until there’s an offer.
2. Keep calm about the salary until the end of interview
Let the interviewer be the one who makes the first offer. Yes, you can’t always control this, especially if the interviewer ask about this on the early-stage of the interview process. Just keep in mind that it’s better to negotiate when they have decided that they really want to have you. That way, you are in the pole position to negotiate and get the salary you want.
3. Your expected salary should be a range or odd number
How do you answer about your salary expectations? Most job seekers give an exact amount based on their last job. However, it’s better to offer your next employer a pay range. It opens up room for discussion. Also, the answer shows that you are pretty flexible.
If they push you to give exact number, it’s better to give them an odd number. Say, $4,750 than $5,000. This precise number, instead of rounded numbers, will give you a solid anchor. Even when giving a range, you should also use precise numbers. It makes you appear that you know the market and have done some research.
4. You only have one chance to counteroffer
After the employer made an offer, you can do a counteroffer. But remember, no employer wants a pushover. Thus, you should not negotiate more than once, since it might annoys your future employer. These kind of negotiations are often frustrating. In the end, it’s your choice to take it or leave it.