The post attracted nearly 12,500 reactions and hundreds of comments from other professionals on LinkedIn.
Negotiating salaries can make us awkward and anxious. In fact, research conducted by CareerBuilder found that over 55 percent of people in the U.S. do not ask for higher salaries when offered a new role. 53% of employees who avoid salary negotiation shared they do not even attempt it because they do not feel comfortable asking for more money and about 48% said that they refrain from doing so out of fear that the employer might decide not to hire them. Meanwhile, 38% said they avoid negotiating as they don't want to appear greedy.
But it doesn't have to be this uncomfortable. There are some smart negotiation tactics that people can use to assert a grounded stance on where they think their salary should be. It would provide more legitimacy to their demands and make it harder for employers to decline their counteroffer.
Talent acquisition and career coach Sam Struan shared one such salary negotiation tactic in a post on LinkedIn that discussed the intricacies of communication. Specifically, he suggested, one must avoid saying, "I'm looking to make $150,000–$170,000" and instead opt for, "I'm currently interviewing for positions that pay $150,000–$170,000."
Struan added, "'Looking to make' can be interpreted as 'I'm hoping to make $150,000 but I'm currently earning much less.' 'I'm currently interviewing,' tells the interviewer that the MARKET is saying you're worth $150,000-$170,000 and that you're also in DEMAND from other companies."
Ultimately, words carry a lot of importance. Besides the actual meaning of "looking to make" vs. "currently interviewing for," there's also the fact of showing ownership and confidence through what one says and how we present ourselves in an interview.
The original post attracted nearly 12,500 reactions and hundreds of comments from other professionals. Some argued against stating salary ranges as it invites the employer to simply pick the minimum within the range and call it a day. However, Sam explained that giving a range increases the employee's chances "if they really really need a job."
One comment read, "Sam, this is valuable! Even as a recruiter the negotiation process is daunting! I was recently asked, 'what is the minimum salary I would accept for this position?'" Another Linkedin user wrote, "Sound advice. Separates wishful thinking from genuine demand for fair compensation."
One Linkedin user added, "Thanks for sharing this tip on salary negotiation! It's essential to be strategic with the language you use, especially when it comes to discussing your desired salary. Practicing your language and delivery can also help you feel more confident in these discussions. Good luck to anyone currently job searching or negotiating their salary!"
The post was soon picked up by Hanna of @hannagetshired and shared with the wider TikTok audience as well. Besides restating everything that Struan said, she also added in the comments: "The idea here is that it's less about the word choice itself, and more about the subconscious perception your word choice gives the recruiter. Wording that implies you are making less than $X anchors your number below your target amount, whereas the 2nd wording anchors your number to that specific amount. The anchoring point is a very important part of negotiation because it can significantly influence the decision-making process.”
Both Linkedin and TikTok posts went viral on the internet as they helped people in tackling the challenging subject of expressing and achieving their salary expectations!