How to Negotiate your First Salary

Salary negotiation is one of the hardest discussions you will have throughout your career. So it’s better if you start practicing from your very first job offer. The sooner you know how to speak during a negotiation, the better you will be in the future.

The first time when you negotiate for salary, it will be the most difficult because you do not have any leverage – you cannot show experience, accomplishments or even years of working. When you first walk into a room for a job interview, you must rely on your skills for the job as well as your ability to present yourself in a professional way.

Follow these tips and you will earn the respect of your employers even before you start working..

First, understand that the reason for asking for a raise has to have a strong purpose behind it. The reason for you asking for an increment will help you achieve long-term growth. The second is that more money means there is a greater chance of savings for long-term. A few thousand rupees today will turn into lakhs with the right investment and savings in the future.

So, let’s begin the process of negotiating your first salary.

1. Understand the job – Before asking for any salary, be 100% clear about the job, its responsibilities, the hours you will be required to work, travel. Do research on the Internet or ask a professional for the amount of salary you may expect for the position.

2. Know your own skills – Be sure you know how you stand out from the other applicants. If you were a topper in your training course, or any computer courses, let them know. If you worked independently practicing the skills that are required in the job, let them know. Be fully aware of your own strengths that will help them give you a higher offer to begin with.

3. Know the expected salary range – Salary negotiation will never exceed certain percent. Every promotion within a company ranges between 2 – 3%, if you ask for a 20% increment, you will automatically disqualify yourself.

You should know how much the top level companies are paying for similar jobs and you should take into account the company you are applying for when discussing salary. It is also crucial to ask for any additional benefits, such as paid holiday leaves, bonuses and company benefits.

4. Be confident – The truth of the matter is, companies have already spent money on recruiting you. An average Indian company spends thousands of rupees trying to find the right candidate to fill a position. So, if they find your overall presence to be worth it, they will be willing to negotiate your salary.

5. Be enthusiastic about the position – A negotiation does not mean you are fighting the employer. You need to be very enthusiastic about joining the company. Do some short term courses to increase your leverage, give them qualified reasons for the increment, about what you bring to the table.

6. Always be polite – If you decide to take the job, great! If not, you must always remember to thank them for the opportunity but that you could not accept the job.

It is important to note that negotiation will not work in government jobs or places where salaries are graded based on seniority. So, be sure to know the type of job you are applying for before negotiating.

Now, you are prepared. Go land a job!