How to make your next salary conversation a breeze

Author Carmen Hawker
Posted on 28 November 2018
How to make your next salary conversation a breeze

While there is no dollar amount that could equate to your true value, there are a few things we can do to ensure we get paid as close to what our skills are worth as possible. Before you set foot in your manager or prospective employer’s office to negotiate your salary, be sure to answer these three questions…

  1. What are my skills worth? Have a look at comparable jobs and their salary ranges. Come up with a dollar figure and you have more chance of negotiating a salary that is reasonable, realistic and good for everyone. (Try tools like Australian Salaries.com, Hudson Salary Calculator, Glassdoor’s Know Your Worth or PayScale to get an estimate). And don’t forget to ask around! Chat with friends in the industry or colleagues. Being open about what we earn can help support other women to reach a little higher or simply get paid fairly.The pay penalty thrives in a culture of silence where we’re all too scared to talk about what we earn.
  2. How much value can I add to the company? Essentially, you need to know how much your skills and experience are worth to the company in order to put you in the negotiating box seat. Think about what the company’s needs are and how your unique skills and talent can meet them. Then try to put a dollar amount on it. (Here is a great article on how your value add matters to your company.)Tip: Next time you have a salary conversation with your employer ask them exactly what you need to do to meet your next pay goal. Think KPIs (key performance indicators) linked to salary increases. Once you’ve ticked those boxes, you can easily show that it’s time for a pay increase and it will make that next salary conversation really clear and simple!
  3. How much do I need? Having a number in mind helps you remain focused during salary negotiations. When you know what you need it makes it easier to be clear on what you’re asking for and how much you are willing or able to compromise. (Members, we suggest starting with the Money Management step of the 6 Step Money & Mindset 101 Programme.

Negotiating your salary takes practise. Thankfully, in addition to having the answers to these three questions at the ready, there are plenty of great resources out there. Here are a couple that Verve recommends before you dive in: