A quote on salary negotiation

There is a great passage on salary negotiation from the book Purple Squirrel by Michael B. Junge, that reminds that in salary negotiation, it’s useful to think multiple steps ahead of your next move, knowing that in a relationship winning the salary negotiation battle is not winning the career war.

Traditional negotiation works in the context of one-time events and transaction. You can negotiate the price on a car, cell phone plan, or garage sale item, pay or get on a payment plan, and be done. You never have to interact with the other person again if you don’t want to, and your contact with the company or service provider is limited to brief interactions of your choosing.

Employment, however, is not a one-time transaction. It’s an ongoing series of interactions and interpersonal relationships. Salary negotiation is simply one interaction among many. After it’s done you have to live and work with the people on the other side of the equation for the foreseeable future. If one person walks away feeling like they’ve lost or been forced to compromise it sets up a disempowering context for the rest of the relationship. When it comes to employment, the paradigm of someone winning and the other person losing doesn’t serve either party in the long run.

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