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How to Negotiate Promotion Opportunities

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When you see a promotion on the horizon, it's not time to sit back, relax and enjoy the fruits of your labor. Instead, you need to take this opportunity to get the best deal possible -- whether that's a higher salary, flex time, better benefits or that gym membership you've been eying. The key now is to do your research into what you can expect, and then go into the negotiations at the right time with the right requests.

Timing is Key

Good timing is key. If your employer offers you a promotion, don't accept without seeing the terms of the deal, reminds Alison Green of the Ask a Manager blog. If you do, you're essentially saying to your boss that you'll accept the job under any terms, suggests Green. Instead, ask for time to review the details of the deal. You should review it as a proposed deal and not something that's non-negotiable, suggests Maggie Zhang of Business Insider. Don't wait too long to respond, though. A day or two should be enough time to review the details and make a counteroffer.

Do Your Homework

Before you make a counteroffer, get a better sense of what you can expect from the new job. Talk with the person leaving the position to find out what he does on a daily basis, and pore over the job posting. If you're in communication with the outgoing employee, ask him how much he earned in the position, or ask him to name a range. If he's not forthcoming, research salary databases such as the Bureau of Labor Statistics or Indeed to get an idea of how much people earn in your new position. Make connections with similar workers on LinkedIn to find out their salary ranges and how they structure their workdays.

More Than Salary

If you make connections with other workers in similar positions, also ask about the types of perks that go with the job. If, for example, you're being promoted to a regional salesperson job, it would help to know that other people at comparable companies get full-time use of a company car. If your company doesn't have the budget to raise your salary a lot -- or even if it does -- be ready to ask for other perks. Advocate for flex time, a gym membership, an expense account, stock options or a wardrobe allowance, for example.

Underline your Contributions and Be Willing to Walk Away

When you come back to the table with your counteroffer, first outline why you're going to be worth the extras. Remind your boss of your sales record in your sales job, or how you increased viewer ratings in your broadcast news producing job. Then lay out your requests, and have one or two you're willing to part with for negotiating purposes. For example, ask for a raise, a wardrobe allowance and a gym membership, but be willing to drop the gym membership if the boss waffles. If she's unwilling to negotiate at all, decide ahead of time whether you'll be willing to walk away. After all, taking on new responsibilities that limit your personal time might not be worth it if you're not going to be duly rewarded.

References

About the Author

Nicole Vulcan has been a journalist since 1997, covering parenting and fitness for The Oregonian, careers for CareerAddict, and travel, gardening and fitness for Black Hills Woman and other publications. Vulcan holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and journalism from the University of Minnesota. She's also a lifelong athlete and is pursuing certification as a personal trainer.

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