Salary Negotiation Tips

By Ladies Get Paid Founder & Author Claire Wasserman. Follow Claire for more career tips, or purchase The Ladies Get Paid book. Things you buy through our links may earn us a commission.

Salary Negotiation Tips

We all feel we need salary negotiation tips. Whether you realize it or not, you negotiate every day. From deciding what movie to see with your friends, to getting your kids to do chores, negotiating is ultimately about finding a creative solution that satisfies everyone. But negotiating your salary feels different. Your palms are sweaty, your stomach is in knots; even just the thought of it is enough to trigger mental, emotional, and physical distress.

Here are 6 salary negotiation tips to put your mind at ease and set you up to get paid what you deserve.

1. Shift your mindset

Negotiating your salary can feel really intimidating. A lot of the anxiety comes from the unknown: am I asking for too much? Too little? It’s hard to know what the employer is thinking, and whether or not what you propose will affect the offer. Here’s the good news: if you’re given an offer, that means the employer wants you. Remember: You’re both on the same team trying to figure out the best way to make everyone happy.

2. Understand your market value

Use sites like Glassdoor or Payscale to research the range of salaries for the role you’re negotiating for. When you do your research, make sure to include:

  • Geographic location
  • Years of industry experience
  • Education level
  • Years of leadership experience
  • Career level
  • Skills
  • Licenses and certifications

3. Ready your range

Before beginning your salary negotiation, you’ll want to pick out a range of 3 numbers to use as the framework for your salary negotiation:

  • Rock Star Money
    • This is the top of your range, your reach salary, and the number you should start with
  • Feelin’ Good
    • This is the middle of your range, and an amount you’d be proud to be paid
  • Bottom Line
    • This is the bottom of your range. You should not go below this number in your salary negotiation

4. Don’t forget full comp

The negotiation doesn’t end with the salary. There are things you can and should ask for besides money. It’s what’s called full compensation, also known as “full comp.” These are things that bring you value and that cost the company little to nothing monetarily. Here are some of examples of other things you can negotiate for:

  • Equity
  • Fertility treatment
  • Tuition reimbursement
  • Executive coaching
  • Conference tickets
  • Cell phone bill
  • Commission

5. Make your case

This is your time to shine and show your wins. The most effective way to make your case is to quantify how you drive value for an organization. Use the below framework to show your value:

“I did X measured by Y that resulted in Z.”

6.  Practice practice practice!

Plan a script for your conversation, equipped with your salary range, full compensation needs, and evidence to back it up. Find a friend, relative, or person in your network you can trust to practice your salary negotiation with you. Pro Tip: make sure you practice specifically saying your numbers out loud!

No matter how many times you negotiate in your life and how good you become at it, you might always get butterflies in your stomach; your palms might always turn sweaty. Don’t let that deter you! Use these salary negotiation tips to calm your nerves, and know your ask is rooted in a process.

Want to take the next step on the path to a higher salary? Enroll in our salary negotiation course today! On average participants earn a 15% raise.