negotiation is an important aspect of any job situation, and is often
perceived as the trickiest part. Most common doubts raised are "Is
it safe for me to negotiate a salary without jeopardising my chances
of getting a job?" and "When and how do I negotiate my salary?".
As you will be relocating to the Caribbean on acceptance of the job
offer, there is absolutely no point going through the entire process,
if you are unable to afford to live comfartably once you are there.
As an ambitious job seeker, you should not only have an idea of your
"value" within your field and an estimate of what you could
expect to be paid in that career in the country you wish to relocate
to - but additionally, you should have done research on the cost of
living there too.
is advised that you do a financial plan before even starting your
job search, so that you know in advance what salary you should be
aiming for to live as comfartably as you wish in that country. So,
when the job offer comes, you have a foundation based on research
and knowledge - and a starting point for the negotiations.
situation in which a salary is negotiated could vary depending on
whether the individual is a candidate with a certain degree of work
experience, applying for a position in a company, or is a candidate
with no prior work experience, applying for an entry level position
in an organisation. Another situation could be an employee looking
for career advancement in his current organisation - just in a different
location. The details of each of these situations might be different,
however certain basic principles and rules regarding salary negotiation
remain the same.
this article, we provide broad guidelines on how to negotiate a
salary when applying for a new job.
salary should be negotiated if you perceive the offer is inadequate
The first question to be answered is "Should a salary be negotiated
at all?". The answer to this is - Yes, if the offer made is
inadequate in your view. To arrive at that, it is important that
you, the candidate, applying for the job, do your homework in terms
of knowing the salary range for similar positions in other organisations
within the same industry, and across industries but within the same
For example, when applying for the job of a brand manager in a food
company, you need to be aware of the salary range as a brand manager
in marketing in other organisations across industries i.e food,
cosmetics, detergents etc. That is find out the likely salary for
similar positions in your field. Most reputable corporations offer
a standard salary for a type of job. You, as a job applicant, need
to find out what that rate is.
Do not enter into a salary negotiation for an ego kick to see how
far you can go in raising your price with an organisation, especially
if the offer they make is within the salary range for that particular
position. For first time recruits just starting out in their careers,
it is important to communicate that you are more interested in the
job where you can prove yourself and contribute to the organisation,
rather than in a specific salary. The organisation, in any case,
would probably have a certain number of jobs in definite salary
brackets. Recruiters also may get put off if they perceive that
the candidate is too salary-focussed !
salary only after you have received the job offer
next question that comes to mind regarding salary negotiations
is when to negotiate a salary. Should it be done during the interview
for example, when the interviewers ask the interviewee "
Would you like to ask us any questions?". Or should it be
left to a later date?
answer here is that unless you know or have some indication
that you are going to receive the job offer, salary negotiations
are irrelevant. Salary negotiations, during the interview or
at any time before the interviewers have decided to select you,
will only create a negative impression.
is a saying in sales that you should never discuss price before
you have established value. This applies to job situations as
well. Unless the prospective buyer (employer in this case) is
convinced that you provide a suitable match for their job profile/requirements,
any salary discussion is meaningless.
is better to postpone discussion of the salary till as late
in the selection process as is possible. In the meantime try
and present the value you offer to the employer and understand
the requirements of the position so that you can arrive at a
figure or a range for an acceptable salary. This will allow
you to negotiate salary later on, meaningfully, once you receive
the job offer.
the problem-solving approach in your negotiation
you have received the job offer take some time to think over it.
Use this time to prepare for the negotiation process.
out the issues to be discussed or negotiated
could be for example, the structure of your salary package and
the amounts under each head, benefits such as health, housing,
leave, bonus, retirement benefits etc.
on your minimum requirements i.e. the conditions which need to
be met for you to accept the offer. Think about what you are willing
to trade off. You will need to do this to be able to appear flexible
in your negotiation otherwise you may scare away the employer
with too much aggression and rigidity. Remember the employer could
still withdraw the job offer, so be cautious.
criteria to justify your stand
give you a high probability of succeeding in your negotiation,
you need to set criteria to appear objective in your requests.
It is better for the organisation to realise that your concerns
are based on real needs and comparable industry standards instead
of arbitrary demands for higher remuneration.
aware of your strengths
could help you gain confidence during the process of negotiation.
If the organisation really needs you, highlighting your strengths
and achievements will put you in a better bargaining position
to get the employers to consider your requests seriously. Remember
that your request should be based on what you can do for the organisation
and what you are worth. This could also re-iterate to the employer
that your profile and theirs provide an appropriate match.
your own style of negotiation
objective and balanced. Do not get too aggressive because you
should not scare the employer away! Unless you have some alternative
firm offer, it is advisable to negotiate in a flexible manner.
to be in a win-win situation
this problem-solving approach to arrive at a win-win situation
at the end of the salary negotiation process. Look for a solution
where you and the employer benefit, instead of a zero-sum situation
where you win/I lose or the other way around. Look for common
platforms even though the issues might appear conflicting. If
your expectations are reasonable it should ensure success in your
negotiations and leave all parties concerned feeling satisfied
about recruiting you.
your tone of voice / body language to communicate enthusiasm for
the day of the negotiation, show your pleasure at receiving the
job offer. Clarify aspects that you need to and highlight your
concerns/reservations. Yet, let your body language express your
enthusiasm and eagerness for the job and the organisation.
the final offer
the negotiation process is over, repeat the final offer as you
understood it. And express your intention to formally accept as
soon as you receive the final offer letter. If you are not going
to accept, be tactful and diplomatic on the reasons why. Send
a letter also regretting that things did not work out. In a nutshell,
leave a positive impression of yourself.
you have put these guidelines into practice, BEST OF LUCK!