Negotiating Your Salary in a Bad Economy

It is always tough to negotiate a salary, especially in a bad economy. You need to be on your toes and have all the data ready and available in order to negotiate a good deal for yourself when times are bad. Companies are usually illiquid during tough economic times and are unable to pay top dollars for your services. However, you can still negotiate a good deal for yourself by following some simple guidelines.

Showcase Your Contribution

As all companies are worried about their bottom lines it makes sense to highlight your contribution to the company's bottom line. Whether you are negotiating a new deal or asking for a raise, point out that you have added substantially to the company's profits.

Make Promises

Make promises that you can keep. Make projections of how much you can contribute to the company's bottom line in the year ahead. Show how the company will benefit by retaining you at a higher cost. If the cost-benefit analysis is in your favor, you are likely to gain a substantial hike in your current salary.

Research Salaries

Research the salaries offered in your field and make sure that you are paid on par. Compare how much other companies in the field are paying for your kind of position and ask for something a bit more.

Research Your Company's Financials

Before you start negotiations for a raise make sure that your company is in sound financial health. If not, you will be better off applying for a new job with a financially sound company.

Have a Lower Limit

Fix a lower limit to your salary for yourself. Do not let anybody talk you into accepting less. However, arrive at this lower limit scientifically by keeping in mind salaries for comparable jobs and your experience.

Have a Plan B

Whether you are negotiating for a new job or are asking for a raise, have a second string to your bow. You should be able to exit the interview gracefully, by either sticking to your current job, or shifting to a new one depending on the circumstances of the interview.

Agree to Take on More Responsibility

If you boss asks you to shoulder more responsibility agree to do so, but make sure the extra work is reflected in your salary. Never agree to shoulder more responsibility without asking for a pay rise.

Sell Yourself

Explain to a potential employer why they should pay you more than they are offering you. Sell your skills. Point out that you have great skills in particular areas. Explain how these skills will benefit the company financially.

Counter the Offer

Once the HR department makes an offer, counter it with a well researched response. Explain why you think you are worth more to the company. You should have the facts and figures ready to make a good impression on your boss.

Accept ESOPs

If the company is especially hard up right now, but has great potential accept ESOPs in stead of cash right now. You will end up making your money by betting on a good company.

By keeping all these points in mind and negotiating firmly yet politely and respectfully you will be able to get yourself the salary you deserve. Always remember that your salary is a function of many variables such as your qualifications, work experience, the company's financials, the general industry trend, and the economy. From these factors highlight the positives and also show yourself to be a willing worker. You are sure to get that raise that you have been longing for.