The dreaded salary expectation question

posted 3 years ago in Career
  • poll: When asked for my salary expectation, I would:
    Not give a specific number or range & throw the ball back in their court : (7 votes)
    15 %
    State a figure/range that I feel is reasonable : (21 votes)
    44 %
    State a figure/range that's higher than what I want, for negotiation room : (20 votes)
    42 %
    Other (please explain!) : (0 votes)
  • Post # 3
    Member
    3989 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: October 2011

    If they ask my current salary, I always ask for 5k more.

    If they don’t ask my current salary, I always ask for 10k more than what I’m making.

    Post # 4
    Member
    11740 posts
    Sugar Beekeeper
    • Wedding: November 1999

    I usually say 5-10 higher than what I’m making, unless I know the standard is much higher than what I make.  In an interview today, I asked for about 7k higher.

    Post # 6
    Member
    397 posts
    Helper bee

    @ChicFoodist:  

    Yea, definitely ask for at LEAST 5K more…you’re moving forward, not staying level. I made a certain amount at my old job, and then moved into the one Im in now and stayed at the same pay level cuz I didn’t want to sound greedy….majorly kicking myself, cuz how do I ask for a salary change now??

    Post # 7
    Member
    1084 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: April 2014

    I’d lean more towards 10-15k and then they can negotiate down if they want to. 

    Post # 8
    Member
    207 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: March 2014

    Whenever applying for a job, you should always do research before the interview about the average salary for that position, with your experience/education, in that region, and go with that. I think it’s important to show people that you’ve educated yourself on the position and salary so they don’t take advantage of you. Plus, it will help in negotiations. If you state your salary expectations and they offer you something lower anyway, you can always say something like “I was really hoping for something more in the range of what we previously talked about.”

    Post # 9
    Member
    5697 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: August 2012

    I completely disagree with not giving a number and asking them what’s reasonable. Very few companies would just offer up the world if you say that, they’ll offer you bottom dollar. I would take thye low end of the consultant range, since you are technically an entry level consultant if you haven’t done this work before, and inflate it by about 10%. You always want to give yourself wiggle room. The worst thing is to know you want to make say at least 50K, and say 50k, and end up with only 50k (or less), just to walk away thinking “I really could have gotten them more to like 53 if I had tried”

    Post # 12
    Member
    207 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: March 2014

    @ChicFoodist:  I hear you. Any conversation regarding salary is so difficult and awkward, especially when your research comes up with such a huge range! It also doesn’t help when the person hiring you won’t tell you the position level or what THEIR expected salary for the position is. I honestly think it’s one of the hardest parts of working!

    Post # 13
    Member
    1193 posts
    Bumble bee

    Usually I ask them to throw out a number first – like “What would you consider fair for someone with my experience in this field?”. Eventually, they will provide you a number, which likely is the lower end of their range. Then, you can provide your research and convince them to pay you more. 

    I have found its easier to have them throw out a number first, mainly because :

    1. If you say a number, and they instantly agree, you know you could have gotten more

    2. It allows you to negotiate upward by coming prepared with research supporting a higher salary

    Post # 14
    Member
    4834 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: September 2013

    I’ve wondered about this too, especially since I’ve been in grad school since 2008 and I haven’t been working for a few months since. Technically, I made $20K stipend as a grad student and they paid about $20K in tuition/health insurance… so do I say I made $40K? But now I have a PhD, so I’d like to be making much more than that! As for how much to ask for, I have been told to research average salaries for the job and give a range. 

    Post # 16
    Member
    69 posts
    Worker bee
    • Wedding: June 2012

    Generally (according to negotiation theory), it is better to be the first one to name a figure. Negotiations always end up closer to the first figure put on the table – it’s like the anchor around which the negotiations revolve. 

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