Negotiating your salary. There’s a lot at stake here, it’s not just
about this job and this year: your pay for the rest of the time at this organization will be based on how you negotiate your salary as you take your first position. But negotiating your salary can be awkward and uncomfortable. Today we’re going to discuss how to talk about salary in a job interview, and how to negotiate your salary once an offer is made. This is something you’ll want to think about and plan ahead of time to ensure the conversation goes the way you want it to. I recently sat down with Cindy who has served as Executive Director at a New York City non-profit and she now works as a recruiter. She’s hired hundreds of people and can help you think through your requirements, and the right way to talk about them. So cindy, let’s talk about salary. How do you suggest people talk about that in an interview? It is complicated and it’s one of the things that scares people. So one is as with everything else that I’ve said, prepare for it ahead of time. The ways that you can prepare for it, one, there may be…You should make sure, you know, if there’s a salary band or a hourly rate listed, because that makes it really simple. Some places will do that so make sure you’re aware of that. Lots of places small, and they’ll say based on experience, etcetera. Something that’s good to know is that there are states now in new york and california, maybe some others, where it is no longer legal for them to ask you what you currently make, or what you made in your previous job. Actually, it’s helpful to know. So be prepared with your previous salaries, if you’re in a state where that’s legal, and they may say, what was your last salary and they base, you know, they’ll base what you, what they may give you based on what you made previously. Okay, let’s say you live in a state where it’s not legal to do that, yet they’ve asked you that? Maybe the person interviewing you doesn’t know, or maybe they don’t care, what, how do you think that should be handled by the person who’s being interviewed? I mean, I would say you can handle it two ways. Um, you could…Here, would be my suggestion, would be to say: in my last role, I made about X and I anticipate or expect or want to make x in this role. And that way you’re answering both sides of the question. It’s super complicated if that happens. Um and with all of the things that are not legal to be asked about in an interview. Cindy has given you a good, general way to talk about your salary if you’re asked directly what you currently make, and how to, in the same sentence, mention a ballpark for what you want to make in your new position. Ballpark. I go over what this idiom means at the end of the video. She also mentions a salary band or grade. In some organizations, positions are assigned a salary band which simply means the pay for that position must fall within a set range. If you know the top of the range is too little for you to accept the job, you should drop out of the process as soon as you know that since they won’t be able to offer you more. If you are asked: Then what are your salary expectations? Which is often the question that’s asked, so the research you should do ahead of time is what are the salaries or comparable salaries at organizations? You can go on to Glassdoor, um, you can go on, you know, do a search of just ‘what are the salaries of this place’ and it’ll pull up wherever that salary information might be, and so if you can’t find it for the company you’re applying for, look for others. If you’re applying in the nonprofit space, you can go on to Guidestar. That shows at least top salaries at an organization, that is not always helpful, but it can at least help you have a gauge. So do as much research as you can about what the role is and what standard salaries are in a place of which you are applying so that you know where that basis is. Cindy mentions two websites, Glassdoor and Guidestar. Glassdoor is a website where you can enter a company or organization and see all sorts of information about it. You can read reviews from people who work there or have worked there, on their experience as an employee, but you can also see the salaries for various positions. You can also do a search on the job title for the job for which you’re applying, and see all salaries at different companies in the same city or region that you’ll be working in. This can give you a great idea of what to ask for. And then figure out, you know, if you’re flexible, then say that, and say “You know, I’m looking for a salary of $60,000 a year but I’m flexible, like I’m willing to go down to 50,000, but I really like to be closer to 60. If you’re not flexible, if you have a bottom line, then say what that is. If truly, you’re like, I cannot make less than 75 thousand, like, I just can’t, then then communicate that. Because it doesn’t…. It’ll– you don’t want to waste your time or their time. If you really are flexible and you can say “Look, I’m really flexible I’m excited about this role, like the salary isn’t the thing that’s most important to me, could you share with me what the range is? And they’ll, you know, I, we are very flexible, I’ve always been very flexible with range, and say the range is x, is that comfortable for you? And they’ll say yes or no. Right? So you know, I think you need to know going in where your requirements are and are they flexible? Not only do you need to research current salaries at the organization and the same position at other local organizations, but you also need to ask yourself what your range is. Know how low you’d be willing to go, and what your preferred salary is. You can use phrases like these: “I’d like to see myself making between $50,000 and $60,000.” “I’d like to be at or close to $75,000.” “I can’t take this position for less than $70,000.” In an interview, how much should you be justifying what your salary requirements are? So let’s say they give you a range and you feel like you really need to be at the top of that range to take the job. When you say that, should you, or is it a turn-off to say: and I think that my skills and XYZ justify that? Or just leave leave all of that alone, just do numbers? You just, well, actually at the at the point of your interview process, if they say the range is 50 to 60 and you think you need to be at the top of that range, I wouldn’t mention that at that point. You wait till you have an offer to do negotiating. You don’t negotiate on salary until then, in my opinion. Great advice. Yeah, so you, so that put, as long as it’s within range, then you say “Great! That’s comfortable for me.” I mean me, I mean, it’s possible they may ask you more, like, you know, it depends on the situation, as a recruiter, I can have a much more frank conversation with somebody, right, to figure out really what the situation is around salary, and and people feel more comfortable talking to a recruiter about that. But you know, I would say you don’t, you don’t want to start negotiating until there’s– until you have something to negotiate about.>>Right, until there’s been an offer.
>>Which is an offer. So basically, be prepared, do your research to know what to expect, and then also be prepared to say what you want, and not, you know, shy away from being direct about that, if it is indeed what you need to have. Yes. Yes. And if you’ve done your research, and if
you really don’t know, I do think it’s okay to say: “You know, I really don’t know what the salary range would be for a role like this. Would love to have some understanding of that before I say what I need.” That’s also okay. Like, especially if you’re moving into a new field, like, and you can say, you know, I was making around this, you know, before, but it was a very different field, and so I expect that the salary ranges are different here, and I haven’t been able to find very good information, would love if you could help me figure that out. Like, so I think, there are a lot of different answers, but you just want to know it ahead– you want to prepare ahead of time.>>Yeah.
>>What those answers are.>>Always be prepared.
>>Yeah. So let’s say you do get an offer. Now what? You’re no longer in the interview process, you’re in the negotiation process. First of all, as Steve mentioned in an early video in this course, if you’re waiting for another offer from another company, or you already have one and you’re deciding between two, go ahead and let the companies know. You could say something like, I also have an offer from another company, could I have a few days to consider my options? You may find that a company is willing to match a higher offer from another company if they really want you. But also, never lie about having another offer from another company. Your job offer will likely come in as a phone call. It’s very normal to ask for a couple of
days to think about it. The person who’s offering you the position will probably want you to let them know the specific day that you’ll give them your answer. It is okay to respond with an email rather than a phone call, and it is also definitely okay to negotiate your salary. In fact, the person offering you the job is probably expecting it. I talked to several people who do hiring for their companies and they said in some cases, they do make a last/best offer right from the beginning. That is, when they give you the offer, they say something like, this is the most we could offer you for this position, or, this is our last and best offer. In that case, there is no negotiating. You can decide if you’ll take it or not. But if they don’t say that, it’s fair to ask for more. You could say something like, I’d be so happy to take this position, but I would like to be making ___. Name your number. If they can offer you that, or something close to it, then great. If what you’ve asked for is beyond the budget, then they’ll let you know. It doesn’t mean you can’t take the job. When you counter, when you ask for more money, how much is it appropriate to ask for? There’s no one perfect answer here, but from the people I’ve talked to, it sounds like something around 8 percent or so would be reasonable. If you’re offered 60,000, it would be okay to ask for 65,000. You could push that up a little bit more if it’s very important for you to make more, but you wouldn’t want to counter with something like 80,000 if you were offered 60,000. Do your research, know what expectations are, and know your bottom line. All this will help negotiating a salary go smoothly. Good luck in your new position. And this concludes the course on getting a job in the US. I’ve had so much fun learning with you along the way. What jobs are you applying for, or, what
job were you offered? Let me know in the comments below. I wish you all the successes in the world. For my non-native students, we’re going to get to your English lesson in just a minute. If you haven’t already, be sure to click the subscribe button and the bell for notifications. I make new videos on the English language and American culture every Tuesday and have over 600 videos on my channel to date focusing on listening comprehension and accent reduction. While you’re waiting for next week’s video, a great next step would be to check out this “get started playlist.” Now for my students who are non-native speakers of English, I want to go over how I used the word ‘ballpark’. A ballpark is a baseball field, but we use it idiomatically. The way I used it, it means approximation. When talking about salary range, I said “mention a ballpark for what you want to make in your new position.” A ballpark estimate or figure is, again, an approximate. And when I use that, it implies that I haven’t spent a lot of time thinking about the details before I come up with the number. It’s just a ballpark figure. It’s just a general approximation. For example, recently, we asked our friend who is a contractor how much it would cost to repair our shower, which was leaking. We described the situation and he gave a ballpark estimate over the phone. If he came to our house, explored the issue, and looked up how much the materials would cost, he would be able to give us a more accurate estimate. Let’s say you’re negotiating selling your car. Someone wants to buy it, and he’s saying what he’s willing to pay for it. $5000. He might say, “Am I in the right ballpark?” or, “Are we in the same ballpark?” If you’re thinking of selling for $6000, then an initial offer of $5000 might feel like it’s in the right ballpark. But if you wanted to sell for $9000, then $5000 probably feels like it’s not even in the ballpark. We also use ‘ballpark’ in the phrase ‘to hit it out of the ballpark’ to congratulate someone on doing
something spectacularly well. Maybe a colleague at work made an amazing presentation to a client. You could say: “You hit it out of the ballpark!” Or maybe David gave me the best birthday present I could ever imagine. I could say, “He hit it out of the ballpark.” Another ‘ball’ term you might hear in
negotiations is ‘low ball’. This is when someone offers you something that you feel is well below the value. For example, if I want to sell that car for $9000, and someone offers me $5000, you might say, “That’s a low ball offer.” Or you could also use it as a verb and say,
“He’s low balling me.” Have you ever heard one of these terms before? Describe the situation in the comments so other students can learn from you. That’s it, and thanks so much for using Rachel’s English.