Evaluating and Negotiating Job Offers

From a purely financial perspective, negotiating your initial offer is probably one of the most significant career moves you will ever make. Let’s say both you and Jane Doe have an initial offer of $50,000/yr. Let’s say you decide to just accept the offer, but Jane negotiates and gets her starting salary increased to $55,000/yr. Just a difference of $5,000 right? Think again.

Just for the sake of discussion, lets say everything else about the offers remains the same between the two of you. Also, to make it simple, lets say for the next 25 years Jane and you have exactly identical career paths. And keeping with the super-simplification, let’s ignore all the variables and just consider one factor – a 4% raise each year. At the end of 25 years Jane’s salary will be $140,981/yr and yours will be $128,165/yr. $12,000/yr is a much bigger number than $5,000/yr,  and it stings a litte, right?

Now consider how much you have earned over the 25 years and how much Jane has. What if I were to tell you that the difference in earning over this period is a whopping $208,229? Yes, its true. Just plug in the number in an excel sheet and you will see for yourself. So, by just negotiating a simple $5,000 raise in starting salary, Jane could earn hundreds of thousands more than you!

Now imagine if we add in all the other perks of that initial offer….

Don’t be that person who kicks yourself 25 years down the line! Pick up some of the tricks from this series of articles, and you can ace the negotiation and get the top dollar offer. Knowing that you were not so naive as to jump on the first offer that came along and negotiated your way to a better offer will help you face other career decisions down the line a lot more confidently as well!

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