Should I negotiate the job offer?

You have an offer. It’s your dream job. Would you dare negotiate for more than the first offer? Is there a voice in you head saying “don’t be a fool, what if they retract the offer?”Challenge that voice. That is the voice of “assumptions”.

Think about past assumptions. Do you remember when you were convinced you were at the height of fashion? Which one was it for you? The bell-bottoms, platform shoes or miniskirts . You thought you were smashing. Now you look at the photograph and laugh, cringe or cry a little. Those cringeworthy moments should teach you something.  The next time you are certain about something stop to reflect on past assumptions. This same strategy applies to assumptions you make in a negotiation. . Consider the example of the job offer.

Your have just been offered your dream job. If you don’t accept the offer as given they could withdraw it. Is this an assumption you should challenge? Think about the time and effort put into setting up the rounds of interviews and getting the management team to agree on the ideal candidate.  Do you believe asking a couple questions will cause the withdrawal of the offer? How would that conversation go?

“I am excited to let you know the management team has come to a decision and are ready to offer you the position at $60,000 annually, with benefits and 2 weeks annual vacation pay.”

“Thank you! I am so happy to hear from you. I am excited to use by background in social media to address the marketing challenges and the 401K Matching is great! There are a couple questions I have about the offer.”

“Questions? Certainly not!  Do you want the job or not!

Does this sound a bit ridiculous? Of course it does. Yet that is what happens when you make assumptions. It is helpful to remember the answer is ‘NO”  if you don’t ask. Here are some helpful negotiation tips:

  • Be prepared – Identify your market value
  • Identify compensation goals and your walk away point -write them down
  • Don’t be afraid to ask – be gracious and be prepared with questions when the offer is made
  • Remember – The answer is NO if you don’t ask

Do you believe asking clarifying questions would be grounds to withdraw an offer? Of course not. It is possible, however that  if you don’t negotiate the hiring manager may question their decision to hire you.