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Money Talks: Negotiating Your Salary

APEF: Solving the Financial Illiteracy Crisis

Congratulations on landing the job of your dreams! But the hiring process is far from over. Negotiating your salary can be intimidating, yet can have lasting ramifications on your financial future... making this skill worth mastering as soon as possible.  In this guide, we'll explore the key steps to successfully negotiating a salary that reflects your worth.

First Things First- Do Your Homework:
Prior to entering any negotiation, you should conduct thorough research on the average salary for the position you are applying for. Resources such as Glassdoor and Payscale provide invaluable information regarding standard compensation levels depending on location and cost-of-living considerations - this enables you to make more informed requests.

Know Your Worth:
Recognize and appreciate all of your skills, qualifications, and achievements as they relate to organization's success. Taking an honest inventory will bolster your confidence during negotiations.

Timing is Key:
Choose the right moment to discuss salary. In an ideal world, this would be after receiving a job offer as this positions you more strongly as the employer has already expressed an interest in having you as part of their team.

Practice Your Pitch:
Rehearse what you're going to say during the negotiation. Clearly articulate your value, skills, and why you believe you deserve the salary you're proposing. Did you dominate a particular project or possess unique expertise or certifications that were essential in landing you this role? Make sure these attributes stand out in an impactful and concise way; remember you're selling yourself by emphasizing all of your unique assets! To refine this part of the presentation practice with friends or family.

Be Flexible:
While it's essential to have a desired salary range in mind, be open to negotiation. Be mindful that they may have financial or logistical considerations preventing them from fulfilling your initial request and be willing to find an agreeable middle ground. When the salary offer arrives, don't jump at the first number. Express your gratitude and politely state that you were hoping for [insert your target range here] based on your research and qualifications. Be specific and avoid giving a vague range. The employer might counteroffer; listen carefully and understand their reasoning. If the offer falls short, politely reiterate your target range and explain why you deserve it.

Consider Total Compensation:
When looking at overall compensation packages, don't just consider base salary alone; take into account other aspects such as health insurance, retirement contributions, bonuses and professional development opportunities as well. Sometimes a comprehensive benefits package can make up for lower salary options.

Stay Professional:
Be professional when engaging in negotiations.  Avoid making demands or ultimatums; rather frame your requests as discussions about fair compensation for the value you bring to the organization.

Know When to Walk Away:
While compromise is key, don't undervalue yourself. If the final offer significantly falls short of your expectations and there's no room for negotiation, be prepared to politely decline. Remember, your worth is non-negotiable, and walking away can open doors to better opportunities that recognize your talents.

Show Your Appreciation:
No matter the outcome of negotiations, express gratitude for being offered the job and the employer’s willingness to discuss compensation. Maintaining a positive relationship is important for your professional reputation.

Developing negotiating skills early in your career can set the stage for future success. By conducting research, understanding your value, and approaching negotiations professionally, you can ensure not only entry into the workforce but also fair compensation for your skills and contributions. Negotiation skills improve with practice - take this chance to develop them further as you travel along your career journey!

Bonus Tip: For additional negotiation tips and salary data, consider these online resources:

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a type of policy that you agree to have with a company. In exchange for paying monthly rates, the company agrees to pay for some or all of your health needs.

401k plans, and other retirement funds that are provided by the employer as an additional benefit to the wage or salary provided.

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