Welcome to the third edition of this blog series where Elaine Brady, Managing Partner, Barden Dublin shares some insights and tips for effective salary and package negotiation strategies.
In the first and second editions Elaine covered an overview of salaries in the current market, pin pointing an exact market rate for salary, the differences between male and female behaviour when it comes to negotiating, further differences when negotiating salary with external and internal career moves and other variables that can affect how you can negotiate your salary.
Here she shares 5 key tips to ensure a successful negotiation process.
1…Try, as much as possible to remove emotion from your pitch:
Acknowledging the above statement highlights why so many of these conversations can become emotional, or even be avoided altogether. The reality is that we don’t want to have these conversations because they are deeply uncomfortable, and moreover, we all fear rejection. Recognising this and trying to look at the situation objectively is imperative to securing a good outcome.
2…Speak in facts, and quantify where possible:
There is only one way to succeed, and this is through preparation – and lots of it. Construct your case based on facts and figures that support your claims. As mentioned earlier, while it’s important to review salary surveys, speaking to a specialist recruiter who is an expert in your area, will likely give you a very comprehensive market rate to work off.
Ground your argument in quantifiable data to clearly demonstrate what you have achieved, rather than what you ‘feel’. Just like you wouldn’t go into a supplier negotiation with an argument to reduce prices because you ‘feel’ you deserve it.
3…Be careful of your tone and demeanour:
One of the most important steps to a successful salary conversation is to resist becoming defensive (or even teary!), by maintaining a cool head. Don’t rush to fill pauses in the discussion, let your manager speak, listen and consider their point of view. If you feel that rush of emotion that comes with an answer you don’t like, pause and consider your response. Respond, do NOT react. Above all, be open and honest – show humility. Self-entitlement in salary negotiations is not a good look!
4…Be sure you root it in your company’s process:
It helps if your salary review and appraisal processes are linked, but they aren’t always. If you are negotiating a salary increase without an appraisal structure, you need to present your case by measuring and assessing your performance in a similar way. What objectives have you exceeded? How can you demonstrate a proven track record of high performance?
And finally 5…and probably most importantly, strive for a win:win solution:
You can’t negotiate for something that isn’t possible.
Before presenting your case, you must have done your research into what your employer can afford to pay. Luckily as finance professionals, you are likely privy to that information .
An employer is not going to give you an increase that pushes beyond what the company can afford to pay.
If that’s the case, then consider variables or the non-monetary parts, of your compensation- such as additional holidays, more flexibility in working hours, increased learning, potential profit share based on future success of the business – there are lots of options out that that won’t cost an employer anything but could hugely increase your quality of life, and future earning potential.
Above all, you must maintain a collaborative approach at every stage of the negotiation process.
Think about presenting a case to your employer that shows them what’s in it for them too, how you plan to keep improving and how dedicated you are to maximising return on their investment in you.
Other editions in this series…
Elaine Brady is Managing Partner with Barden Dublin. Following an undergrad in business with Trinity, Elaine joined the recruitment profession in 2004 and held a number of leadership roles with key recruitment firms before founding Barden in 2014. Working with a team of 15 experts Elaine advises leadership teams across Leinster on their talent attraction and retention strategy and is a regular speaker at institute events. Contact Elaine at firstname.lastname@example.org or via LinkedIn.