So you were just offered a great new job! On the other side of the country….
Women are nototriously bad at asking for things for ourselves. Sometimes we don’t think we deserve it, but often it’s because we were taught to be grateful for what we have and not be greedy. But the times, they are a-changin’. And when negotiation is done well, you’re likely to get what you ask for.
Build your case
It all starts with taking charge and doing your due diligence. What are the costs of moving to that new city? Are housing costs higher in your new location? What do your new employer’s competitors offer their new hires? If you think you’ve nailed the interview process, start your homework early so that when an offer’s extended, you know what to ask for. By knowing the facts and preparing for questions and counter-offers, you build the strongest case for relocation compensation.
Think outside the box(truck)
Some relocation benefits you mihgt not even think to ask for. This is when internet searches and your social media network can really help out. Some companies provide family and spousal assistance, which are extremely important if you need to move a family. Some can connect you with local schools, or with a liaison who can help you map out the neighborhood or school system that best suits your needs. If you’re moving with a pet, ask for a pet travel allowance to cover air travel, boarding or any immunizations needed before travel.
Be direct, be patient, but stand firm
Beating around the bush gets you nowhere. Not to mention the crap tone it sets with your new employer. Just like with your new position, you have to have goals in mind and know exactly what you want and how to achieve it. In today’s data-minded society, that means tangible, measurable goals, not just, “I want to do well”. State your case in a business-like, non-emotional manner, and never EVER use the phrase “I feel that…” in your request. It ain’t about feelings, it’s about facts, remember?
Know when to hold ‘em
Don’t sound too eager when negotiating. Make sure the company realizes how lucky they are to have you, not the other way around. And if at all possible, don’t disclose your current salary to your new employer. Keeping this information to yourself while negotiating compensation and relocation often results in a higher rate of pay then you were expecting.
Their “No” isn’t the last word
You made your case, and your new employer agrees to pay for your moving truck and a $100 allowance to drive from New Jersey to California. It’s time to counter-offer. Counter-offers, like initial requests, must be straighforward and accurate. We all know that $100 isn’t going to get you west of the Mississippi, let alone all the way to the Golden State. Giving in to a low-ball offer just because you’re young, new to a field, or a woman, isn’t okay. You’re entitled to fair compensation just like your male colleagues
Negotiating your compensation and relocation package doesn’t have to be a job in and of itself. With a strong game plan, you can feel confident in applying for that job in Houston, Chicago or Jacksonville. And in getting what you ask for.