Last Updated Apr 20, 2011 6:54 PM EDT
Wait Until You're Wanted
Particularly after an interview, you need to know they want you before they'll fight for you (in the form of more money). "Employers don't like to go back and forth about money any more than an applicant wants to. If they have decided to hire you and you are firm in your statement, you will [most likely] receive the higher salary," says Monique Tatum, CEO of Beautiful Planning Marketing Group & PR.
Search Salary Info Online "The internet has changed [negotiating] in that it is way easier to find what comparable salaries are," says career coach Jack Chapman, author of the recently updated Negotiating Your Salary: How To Make $1000 a Minute. His favorites sites? Salary.com, PayScale.com, Glassdoor.com and Indeed.com. "Once you have that info, you're able to have a better conversation with your boss. You can make an argument with some facts behind it other than your own individual value," says Chapman.
Ask For More Time, Then More Money A day or two will help you figure out what you think of a job offer or re-negotiation number -- and what your next move should be. "Ask for at least 24 to 48 hours. Silence is golden when you just let it hang there awhile following an initial offer. Don't rush to fill the quiet void!" says Meg Montford, career coach and CEO of Abilities Enhanced, a career coaching service.
Lay Out Your Value If you've been at your company for awhile, schedule a meeting separate from your annual review, which can be a hectic time for managers, to discuss your successes and how your salary should reflect that. "Having a solid list of accomplishments showing what you've made saved or achieved for the organization helps keep you focused on facts not emotion," says Carolyn Thompson, author of Ten Secrets To Getting Promoted.
Get Another Offer This is an oldie but a goodie, says Mary Greenwood, author of How To Interview Like A Pro. Just like with dating, looking desirable to others can make the one you're with want you more.
Never Let Negotiations End With a "No" You've gotten a job offer or salary increase number that's lower than what you want, but you hear "the money just isn't there." Time to start searching for another opportunity? Not so fast. "Say 'I don't know if I can accept it but is there some other way, like time off, or performance bonuses or something else that could make the package worthwhile?'" suggests Chapman. You might even offer to add a few responsibilities in order to increase your worth to the company, or ask about forgoing health insurance if you can buy it elsewhere for less.
Know When To Say When "Know when it's no longer in your best interest to keep negotiating and then move on to the next opportunity," says Montford. If you feel like your company is consistently getting the better end of the deal, they probably are. Eventually, you'll want to go where you're valued.