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15 Rules For Negotiating A Job Essay

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APRIL 2014
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MANAGING YOURSELF

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15 Rules for
Negotiating
a Job Offer

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by Deepak Malhotra

This document is authorized for educator review use only by Asfia Obaid National Univ of Sciences and Technology (NUST) until August 2015. Copying or posting is an infringement of copyright. [email protected] or 617.783.7860

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ILLUSTRATION: OSCAR WILSON

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JOB-OFFER NEGOTIATIONS ARE
rarely easy. Consider three
typical scenarios:
You’re in a third-round interview for a job at a company
you like, but a firm you admire
even more just invited you in.
Suddenly the first hiring manager cuts to the chase: “As you know, we’re considering many
candidates. We like you, and
we hope the feeling is mutual.
If we make you a competitive
offer, will you accept it?”
You’ve received an offer
for a job you’ll enjoy, but the
salary is lower than you think
you deserve. You ask your
potential boss whether she has
any flexibility. “We typically
don’t hire people with your
background, and we have a
different culture here,” she
responds. “This job isn’t just
about the money. Are you saying you won’t take it unless we increase the pay?”
You’ve been working happily at your company for three
years, but a recruiter has been
calling, insisting that you could
earn much more elsewhere.
You don’t want to quit, but
you expect to be compensated
fairly, so you’d like to ask for a
raise. Unfortunately, budgets
April 2014 Harvard Business Review 2

This document is authorized for educator review use only by Asfia Obaid National Univ of Sciences and Technology (NUST) until August 2015. Copying or posting is an infringement of copyright. [email protected] or 617.783.7860

For the exclusive use of A. Obaid
EXPERIENCE

Don’t underestimate the importance of likability.

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This sounds basic, but it’s crucial:
People are going to fight for you
only if they like you. Anything you
do in a negotiation that makes you
less likable reduces the chances
that the other side will work to get
you a better offer. This is about
more than being polite; it’s about
managing some inevitable tensions
in negotiation, such as asking for
what you deserve without seeming
greedy, pointing out deficiencies in
the offer without seeming petty, and
being persistent without being a
nuisance. Negotiators can typically
avoid these pitfalls by evaluating
(for example, in practice interviews
with friends) how others are likely to
perceive their approach.

Help them understand why you
deserve what
you’re requesting.

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are tight, and your boss doesn’t react well
when people try to leverage outside offers.
What do you do?
Each of these situations is difficult in
its own way—and emblematic of how
complex job negotiations can be. At many
companies, compensation increasingly
comes in the form of stock, options, and
bonuses linked to both personal and
group performance. In MBA recruitment,
more companies are using “exploding”
offers or sliding-scale signing bonuses
based on when a candidate accepts the
job, complicating attempts to compare
offers. With executive mobility on the
rise, people vying for similar positions
often have vastly different backgrounds,
strengths, and salary hi...

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Keywords

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