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EXECUTIVE INSIGHTS | Staff Reporter, Australia
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How to negotiate your salary

Written by Simone Allan, Founder and Director of Mondo Search.

Money, money, money… It’s a topic that we all want to know more about, but we rarely are willing to talk about it even with our best friends. 

How much shall I be paid? When considering a salary offering you also have to take into account the other company offerings - company leadership/culture, the challenge of the work, workplace benefits and career path options. Organisations also vary with pay parameters, whether the industry is high/low paying and profitable/unprofitable, or even company philosophy (e.g. rewarding well or providing low pay but with extra lifestyle benefits).

There are three instances where we negotiate salaries:

1. Starting a role: This is often a vulnerable time, as you seek the next step ahead. Keep your armour of confidence and list key strengths and capabilities that you bring to the position. UK Career Strategist John Lee stated that ‘when an employer extends a job offer to you, this is a critical moment’. Make the most of this honeymoon period, as any significant rise is unlikely for another 2-3 years

2. Being reviewed: This can be after probation, a yearly performance review or a promotion. Make sure again to be armoured with a list of your achievements and contributions. Have what is discussed in writing with a commitment from both parties.

3. When considering resigning: People leave more often for reasons other than money. Research shows that 9/10 times, being counter offered by your current employer with a pay rise or a promotion, usually still ends up with a resignation within 12 months. This is because people resign not over the money but over the other factors mentioned: company leadership/ culture, the challenge of the work, workplace benefits and career path options. If you know you are worth more with a competitor, then share your concerns with your employer privately. The only thing worse than a surprise resignation is an unwanted surprise resignation.

An Executive salary today encompasses reward systems to address different capabilities. Despite the dynamism of the Franchising industry, Executive salaries have not increased in line with CPI. This is ironic considering that utility/office costs has increased dramatically (ABS 2017). We started hiring for Franchising and Retail in 1996 and C level Executives were earning base salaries of $150K to $250K. 20 years later, average base salaries has moved marginally, averaging $180k-$250k. AON Hewitt (Executive Pay General Trends Paper- August 2017) state that there has been a push towards longer-term incentives - i.e. equity - to drive longer-term philosophies. The only real increase in average salaries has been across the discipline of CTO’s and CIO’s.

Steve Bianchini, our Senior Consultant at Mondo Search, has worked in the Franchise industry for many years and understands the difficulty of negotiating your salary within the Franchise world.

“Many mid to lower level roles in franchising are based on statutory awards for employees of franchisees. It is only in the higher management to C-Level roles for Franchisors that there may be any room for negotiation”.

Founder of Mondo Search Simone Allan says: The basic laws of supply & demand prevail. If you have scarce or unique senior experience with a trusted brand, then clearly you can demand a higher price for your services, whether that is as a full-time permanent employee or a contracted consultant”.

“The market constraints of budget for the role though, will not always mean that a Franchisor can afford you and you may easily price yourself out of the market”.

“You will need to influence the Franchisor that they will get a significant return on their extra investment in you i.e. exponentially more market awareness, more product sales, more franchise sales or more operational efficiencies, that will more than compensate for the marginal cost of a higher salary”.

How to find what you’re worth

● Review average salaries using PayScale; Salary.com; LinkedIn Salary, Career Bliss.com and Glassdoor.com,

● Ask an expert (industry specialised recruiters can help). Mondo Search has a sound knowledge of pay scales, as we have interviewed over 24,000 Executives and placed over 2500 leaders in business.

● Know how strong your hand is by researching how in demand your skills are, as this can shift market conditions. Assess the demand/supply scenario in relation to you and the job market. Seek has helpful information on this.

● Believe in yourself. If you’ve done your research and assessed your market value thoroughly, you’re in a stronger position to negotiate. Use these tips when negotiating your salary:

● Pick your time - make sure you book the time for the “ salary conversation”

● Always be positive with points about your contribution and achievements. Speak with gratitude and excitement about your future.

● Set a range by establishing your target salary and being clear about your absolute bottom line. Be upfront and smart about when you flex your expectations within that range.

● Determine what other benefits are important to you, rank them by priority and value (such as extra annual leave, health benefits and flexible hours) and consider whether these are negotiable.

● Listen to your gut as it can anticipate whether a decision is right or wrong for your future.

● View negotiations as a joint-problem solving conversation.

● Finally Never burn bridges even if you (kindly) say no, as your career path could one day cross their own.

Simone Allan is the founder and director of Mondo Search and you can contact her via LinkedIn or at simone@mondosearch.com.au.

The views expressed in this column are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect this publication's view, and this article is not edited by QSR Media. The author was not remunerated for this article.

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