5 things to always remember when negotiating a new offer

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

When was the last time you negotiated?

You might start thinking about things such as job offers or deals within your organisation but in reality, you negotiate all the time, often without realising.

Where to eat, what to do with your spare time, who to speak with etc.

These are all small negotiations that you deal with on a regular basis, only these are automatic as you do them more frequently and their impact is not as larger as say the former negotiations such as job offers.

If you are like the majority, when confronted with larger negotiations, you become anxious and on edge and practically forget everything you know about negotiating, then this article might just help you next time you’re negotiating a job offer.

Throughout this article we will introduce five things you must always remember when negotiating a new job offer. Practical tips that should help you stay calm, make you prepared and ultimately allow you to leave the negotiations knowing you tried everything you could.

Be confident and firm

It doesn’t matter how prepared you are, effective negotiating will draw on a number of skills and one of those key skills is your ability to be assertive and to have a successful job offer negotiation, you will need to feel comfortable with this skill.

Assertiveness and aggressive behaviours are split with a very fine line. As a result, people will often confuse the two, but to break them down:

  • Assertiveness is based on balance.
  • Aggressive behaviour is based on winning.

Being assertive will mean that you can express confidently and firmly what your needs and wants are whilst considering the other persons(s) perspectives on the matter. It is the difference between a win / win solution or just a win solution.

In order to become assertive, you can focus on three main areas:

  • Value yourself and understand your needs and wants ahead of the negotiation.
  • Voice these to the negotiator confidently — to practice this, speak with a friend or recruiter as discussed before.
  • Realise you can only control what you can say or think, everything else is out of your hands — this will make negotiating less stressful when you realise you cannot control other people’s actions or thoughts.

Be prepared to back up your request

Ensure you are ready to back up your requests with supportive evidence. If an organisation has offered you a salary of €45,000 per annum but you believe the market average to be €50,000, gather the evidence to hold up your request, better if you have another offer at €50,000 but only bring this up if your intent is to truly join the company you are negotiating with if they match the offer (don’t play companies off each other)

Negotiate everything together, not one by one

Negotiate the entire offer at the same time, not individual items one by one. If you discuss one condition at a time, after a concluded point the company will think you are ready to accept, only to be hit with another request. If this happens several times, it will look like you are playing for time or not seriously considering their opportunity.

Alternatively, at the beginning of the negotiation, express what you are happy with regarding the full offer and what you would like to discuss in further detail, that way, being transparent from the beginning.

Avoid ultimatums

A negotiation is a discussion and a discussion can only really happen where there is movement around topics.

Giving ultimatums such as: ‘I want €50,000 per annum or I will pull my application’ at the very beginning will likely result in a hostile negotiation with the negotiator growing rather cold towards you.

Negotiate on the areas that matter personally to you but show flexibility your side, for example: ‘I need €50,000 per annum due to my outgoing costs, however if I were able to work from home 4 days per week, I can accept €47,500 per annum as I will be spending less on travel costs’.

The second statement is open language to inform the negotiator there are points to consider whilst still asking for better conditions on your side.

Leave your emotions at the door

Our final point, leave your emotions out of the negotiations. This is easier said than done for some people but something we highly encourage. Companies are not out to get you in a negative way, delays between negotiations and decisions are natural, saying no to requests happen, offers are pulled.

If the company decides to engage in the negotiations, then great, if they do not, it was not the company for you necessarily.

Stay true to yourself, maintain a sense of perspective when it comes to your desired outcomes and allow that to drive your side of the discussion, not emotions.

The art of effective negotiating takes time to learn, this article scratches the surface of what can be taught around negotiating a job offer. It is a starting point but we recommend exploring more literature and trialling your knowledge with friends and trusted recruiters.

Share this with your network if you feel someone could learn something from it, and don’t forget to les us know what you think, we are always keen to hear your feedback.

We have more content on our website should you wish to check it out— Peritus+ (perituspartners.co.uk)

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Eden Whitcomb

Eden Whitcomb

Bringing simplicity to the chaos of recruitment, one educational post at a time.