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One of the most critical parts of finding a new job is salary negotiation. Of course, we’d all wish we can be given way beyond our expectations, but we wouldn’t want to look like we’re asking for too much.

We sometimes try to ask them to just provide an offer of how much they think you’re worth, but this doesn’t always work as they sometimes offer a disappointing amount that you are shy to negotiate.

Salary negotiation can also happen when you’re already employed and asking for a raise. It’s a dreaded thing to do but some situations call for it. Not all are doing it correctly though.

If you are on the verge of salary negotiation, here are 8 ways how others ruined their salary negotiation and how you could avoid doing the same thing.

1. Being Unreasonable with Your Personal Financial Institution

The very first thing you should know is that you should not lie about your financial status. A lot of applicants and employees alike don’t consider that their job is what’ll determine how you’ll live.

When doing salary negotiation, think of all your basic expenses and aim to at least go a little above that so you would at least live comfortably.

However, you must not become too personal when negotiating your salary. Don’t mention highly personal situations like illnesses, marriage, habits, vices, and the like. Your employer has no obligation for these so keep these out of the picture.

2. Lacking Confidence or Having Too Much Confidence

When negotiating your salary, don’t be too humble. Don’t think too little of yourself. Make your employer understand what you are truly worth. Have the confidence to say what you can offer to the company in exchange for a reasonable salary. But don’t be over-confident!

Don’t ask for too much especially if you have no track record to prove your worth. Some expect a higher salary because they simply have work experience, but it still how your would-be employer will think of you.

3. Basing on Your Current Salary

Your new salary should not be based on your current salary. It has been a practice of employers to ask for the current salary of the applicant and offer, if not the same, a wee bit higher than what they’re currently making. Make it a practice not to say your salary from your previous job. Tell them how much you are meaning to receive.

If they ask for your payslip, say that it’s private. It can only dampen your chances of scoring a better offer than others. Don’t go overboard especially if you think you deserve more. Offer what you can, and don’t let others know how much your previous salary was.

4. Not Taking Advantage of Your Performance When Asking for a Raise

When asking for a raise, this should be rooted in a good performance, and some make the mistake of not doing that. Some outstanding employees are too shy to ask.

Capitalize on your performance when asking for a raise. When you are consistently performing well, that’s the best time to ask for a raise. It’s always best to raise this issue through an email or a letter that states your past achievements, and why you demand to be raised.

5. Getting Defensive

Some applicants get defensive – rude, even – when offered salaries that do not meet their expectations. You should never do this. Reason with respect and negotiate nicely.

Of course, you shouldn’t appear like you’re willing to accept any offer, but make it a point that you are serious about negotiating but in a good way. There’s always a nice way to say anything in this world and we should aim to do just that even when it comes to negotiating salary.

6. Telling You to Deserve a Raise When Your Actions Prove Otherwise 

When asking for a raise, always make sure that it is back to performance. Earlier we mentioned of great employees who are too shy to ask for a well-deserved raise. Some do not perform well but dare to ask for a raise. Prove you are worth a raise and you have more chances of getting a raise.

7. Not Doing Research

 When doing a salary negotiation, some forget to check their market value. Compare your salary with those working for other companies with the same function. There are lots of sites and studies that provide the average salary that a specific job title earns.

You can use this to compare your own. If you’re way below this, tell your employer. If you’re applying for a job, let them know that you are looking to meeting this amount. Again, don’t think too little of yourself.

If you feel that you deserve to negotiate your salary, then it’s the proper time to do so. If you know what your responsibilities are, it’s the best time to start working on the possibility of arranging a meeting to negotiate your salary.

8. Not Being Prepared to Hear a NO

When negotiating your salary, you should be prepared to hear no to what you’re asking for. Sometimes, it may be the best interest of your employer to give you what you want for a salary but there are financial restrictions on the side of the company.

But don’t be discouraged and feel demotivated. Show them that you’re still going to do your best and make yourself a candidate for when your company can now offer a higher salary.

Never let your competency waiver. It may be a NO the first time, but there are more chances as soon as you take office. Once your regularization period comes, it’s time to aim for that amount for your salary.

Chances are, they may offer you halfway; it’s your call if you will accept that amount or not. That time, you might be the one saying NO, but if you can still negotiate for a better rate, then do so.

Negotiate Your Salary in the Smart Way

You’ve seen how others commit a mistake in negotiating their starting salary or asking for a raise. We’ve also shared what you should do to avoid doing the same mistake. So negotiate smartly so you will get the salary you deserve. Always remember though, prove to them what you’re truly worth!

Additional Reading:

Written By
Aisha Workman works as a financial solutions adviser for Cash Mart. She helps clients find where to borrow money, how to manage their expenses, and other financial services like insurance, retirement fund, and more.

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