Just a matter of preparation: salary negotiations


Increase your net wealth with a better salary

We at Finelles don’t tire of stressing the following: Increase your overall wealth by increasing your disposable income. Negotiating your salary well is part of the latter. Don’t forget that you can use portions of your salary to invest. Make your money work for you!


The ideal moment to negotiate a salary: when you are getting a new job, a promotion or following a positive performance review. In particular if you have proven your worth to a company, and your manager has let you know how satisfied she or he is with the work you have done, you should ask for a financial compensation.


If you don’t feel comfortable asking for a higher pay, imagine these two scenarios: (1) You are negotiating for your best friend, or (2) your future self (for example, your 65 year old self) requires your assistance doing so. At times, imagining someone else helps you overcome your own biases and / or lack of confidence. In addition, you should practice a salary negation with friends / family members - several times, ideally, at least seven times. Engaging in this role play will pay off - you will feel more confident during the actual situation. Ensure your friends / family members don’t go easy on you. They should take on the persona of a tough “opponent”.

Don’t forget: you’re worth it. Yes - you’re worth this salary.


Enough said! We collected a number of rules for you. They are the standard rules every (salary) negotiation book iterates. You cannot go wrong following them.

  • Be patient

    • Wait for the actual job offer

    • Let the other party make a first offer, take it from there

    • Write down a number if asked beforehand

  • Be silent / pause

    • Once you have been presented an offer, repeat it, but do not comment any further

    • Ask for time to consider the offer

    • Do your homework and respond with a counter-offer, ideally, substantiated with arguments WHY you are worth more and WHY the company given its current performance and its market environment can afford to pay you more

  • Be persistent

    • Accept push backs, wait

    • Do not mind a first “no” from the other party - this is usually part of a negotiation

  • Be flexible

    • Consider which other benefits you would accept in lieu of a certain salary

    • Trainings, benefits, a free gym membership…

    • Additional holidays

    • Working 80%

  • Be courageous

    • Always negotiate - never accept the first offer

    • Your goal is to get as close to your salary objective as possible.

Speaking from my own experience, the more you practice before the actual negotiation, the better you will perform. So be brave and well prepared!

Written by Caroline-Lucie Ulbrich
Finelles Founder. Coach and organizational consultant (ECB, Deutsche Bank and UBS). 



(3 min read)

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