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This week Thursday, July 19th, we will focus on interviewing and MONEY TALK I-Pre-Offer Negotiation Approach. This stuff is worth your practice time in anticipation of that terrific offer you’ll get!
PRE-Offer vs POST Offer…
These two forms of negotiation call for very different skills. Staying with our context of effective PRE-OFFER Negotiation tactics, let’s utilize the basic guidelines for answering questions effectively, this time relative to the discussion of money…
- ANSWER THE QUESTION… The implication, here, is that you have heard and fully understand the nature of the question. If this is true, simply answer the question in a straight forward, brief manner… and then stop talking! Often the challenges come in knowing when to stop talking. For example, Q: What was your base salary last year? A: I am quite surprised that you’re ready to talk money so soon.. How can we possibly discuss the right money for the job before we discuss the job requirements? Could you tell me about… (a context issue)?
- LISTEN FOR OPPORTUNITIES TO INTEGRATE AND CONFIRM YOUR STRENGTHS… Your purpose is to drive home your communication strategy–that set of key words and strengths that define your “message.” So, when a question is asked that relative to a job related strength, answer the question and confirm the strength by stating a behavioral example. For example, Q: We need to discuss salary… could you tell me what you were making last year? A: Yes, of course (the answer…now confirms a strength), you must like my proven ability to conduct needs analysis looking at least one year forward in the operational plans. As you recall, I was able to develop and implement recruitment strategies, unique for each of our operational centers… resulting in 80% cost-per-hire savings. for Johnson Controls… what sort of pay could I expect here at the ABC Company? Whenever possible, state actions and results as a value add to your purpose.
- AT LEAST ADDRESS THE ISSUE OF A QUESTION Before blocking, turning around, or in any other way changing the subject… Salary negotiation, illegal questions and other non-standard questions often call for extraordinary responses. Stay focused, get results… but never manipulate or deceive with your answer. Q: How much did you make in base salary last year? A: Last year? My former position was worth $ X, but the responsibilities we have discussed seem to be worth a base salary much closer to $ X+… don’t you agree?
What is a position WORTH?
While most any working condition of employment and relocation is often negotiable, it is to your advantage to negotiate utilizing the total monetary value of an employed position.
- Base Salary… That structured part of total value that is paid to you on a regular and frequent basis. This is usually the most visible, and emotional, component of the value package, your position worth.
- Structured additions to salary, or other actual monies… also paid on a regular and frequent basis. For example, sales commission or project completion bonuses. Once paid, it is your to keep. These first two items are regulated to factor in to 401K Plans, and often drive pension formulae…
And now “the rules” shift…
- Unstructured additions to salary, or any discretionary monies… these payments can be huge or insignificant (a holiday turkey), taxable or not, and come in a wide range of creative descriptions. They are typically not used in retirement or pension equations– but can be. Discretionary is the keyword, here.
- Benefits… For budget purposes, standard benefits are usually calculated at a fixed percentage of structured salary monies. Health care, sick pay, short term disability, etc can represent 20-50% or more of structured monies within a position’s worth.
- Perks… Payments made on behalf of an employee, before or after taxes. These are usually non-standard things relative to certain positions, like company cars, country club memberships, special equipment allowances, expense money, etc.
- First Year Vacation… While most companies pay vacation money on a very standard timetable, it is paid out of existing budget–usually your structured salary monies. This makes vacation monies essentially a negotiation giveaway for those who ask. Using the fairly standard two weeks, that’s roughly 4% of position worth.
- Start Date… Yes, start date. For employed professionals making a career transition, even start date may influence their total value package. Once again, the drivers are structured monies paid to the employee.