Evaluating your worth

How to evaluate your worth and negotiate a fair salary?

The questions: “How much are you earning now?” or “How much would you like to earn?” are enough to send any seasoned job hunter into a cold sweat. Many times we are reluctant to evaluate our own worth – if we even know how to do it in the first place! While at first, it may seem daunting it’s easy to figure out how to tackle this tricky question by just following a few steps.

Evaluate how much you need

The first step to negotiating your salary is, of course, to figure out exactly how much you are worth. This is no mean feat, especially if you have never worked before, or if you are moving into a new position with which you have little or no experience. A straightforward way to do this is to think like a freelancer. Freelancers are experts at knowing their worth and selling themselves. Try following these steps[1] for freelancers to work out exactly how much you need to survive and thrive. Then negotiate your salary accordingly.

The negotiation

Secondly, you will have to try and get yourself that desired salary. While in some jobs it may be as easy as merely asking, many companies will lowball you as much as possible. Don’t be shy to suggest that it is a little lower than you had hoped. One idea, in this case, is to have a ready prepared list of benefits that you’d like to ask for. If the employer refuses to raise the salary you can see if they might include some other benefits. For example, you can say that you understand that the pay can’t be any higher, however, would they considering offering X amount of money plus an extra week of holiday every year. You might find that companies are more open to this idea.

While nobody likes to be asked about how much they value themselves, it is essential that before you head into an interview, you consider what you will say in the event of the dreaded salary question. It may be the difference between being happy in your job or resenting your days feeling undervalued.