Tips on salary talks during an interview

Unless either the interviewer or you decided early that you are not the person for the job in question, the salary discussion is an inevitable part of the interview. Prepare for it carefully by doing the following:

  1. Review your needs and wants, and workout your own cash requirements before the interview.
  2. Determine the going price of your qualifications and skills on the current market.
  3. Consult professional, trade union and an employee of equal rank in the organization

You should walk into the interview with three figures in mind: Start with the minimum salary you need, and a midpoint salary associated with your target position. Using these two figures, formulate a third – your blue-sky salary, the amount you would really love to earn. 

In most arguments, forthrightness is a very strong quality. In salary negotiation, however, you should move heaven and earth to avoid being the first to mention a figure. Try to ensure that the salary discussion does not come until the end of the interview; however, if you are asked what type of salary you are looking for, turn the tables on the interviewer:

“I expect a salary appropriate to my qualifications and demonstrated abilities. What range did you have in mind?”


“what salary range has been authorized for the position?”

If the interviewer insists on getting a figure from you, do not start a fight. Respond with a broad salary range.

            If you have determined that you need a minimum of #78,000 and your research suggests that the salary range for the target position is #74,000 to #82,000, bracket the range to the interviewer so that it interlocks with the upper range of what you might expect as an industry standard and exceeds your own minimum requirement. Here, for example, a good range would be #80, 000 to #84,000.

Once a salary range is finally on the table, you can respond in one of four ways:

  1. You can accept the figure or range offered. (If necessary, adding the remark that “the upper end of this range is what I had in mind and would be acceptable to me.”)
  2. You can continue the negotiation by responding with your own range, which overlaps the top end of the offer.
  3. You can thank the interviewer for the information and ask for additional time to consider the figures.
  4. You can tell the interviewer that the figure (or range) is unacceptable.

Arguing yourself into a job ends with action. Say what you can to elicit positive action – either an offer or a specific next step – rather than leaving without conclusion.

To be continued……………


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