Here’s an interesting question from a 48Days Podcast listener:

I earn ~$55,000 a year as a CPA. When looking to change jobs I went on three interviews with a company, had a good feeling, and seemed to be going well. The job was almost the same kind of work I was doing. They knew my salary requirement (55k to 60k a year). Then we get to the salary offer, they offered me $45,000; and they were serious.

To say the least I was not impressed with them, and do not work for them. How does someone keep from getting some crazy low-ball offer like that?

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Frankly, that’s not unreasonable as an offer.  The real question is what did you do next?  If you walked away or were offended you may have missed a great opportunity.  The first offer should never be the negotiated end point.  Any smart company should start with an offer they would be thrilled with.  But having invested in three interviews with you it’s obvious they saw you as a very desirable candidate.  They are not going to drop their interest if you counteroffer. 

You could easily say, “I think we have a good match here with my skills and what you’re looking for.  However, based on my understanding of the responsibilities I would see the compensation in the $55 – 60K range.  Is that still within your budget?” 

That’s a very common negotiation process.  I recently worked with a lady who went on an interview for a position posted at $32,500 and she walked out with a $52,000 compensation package.  Not unusual at all.

In your profession and with your salary range I would never expect the first number offered to be the final number where everyone is happy.

More tips in Chapter 9 – Show Me The Money – 48 Days to the Work You Love

Dan Miller, President of 48 Days LLC, specializes in creative thinking for increased personal and business success. He believes that meaningful work blends our natural skills and abilities, our unique personality traits and our dreams and passions. Dan is active in helping individuals redirect careers, evaluate new income sources, and achieve balanced living. He believes that a clear sense of direction can help us become all that God designed us to be. Dan is the author of the widely acclaimed 48 Days to The Work You Loveand No More Mondays. He writes regularly for many popular magazines and web portals, including CBN.com, Crosswalk.com, In Touch, AARP and Success magazines and the Zig Ziglar newsletter. He has been a guest on CBS’ ‘The Early Show,’ MSNBC’s ‘Hardball with Chris Mathews,’ 700 Club’s Living the Life and Fox Business News with Dave Ramsey Show, to hit some highlights. He hosts a weekly podcast that is consistently ranked #1 under Careers on iTunes. Dan is also a frequent speaker and guest on popular radio programs like Moody Broadcasting, Crown Financial, Janet Parshall’s America, American Family Radio, and Prime Time Chicago. Committed to personal priorities, Dan and wife Joanne have been happily married for over 42 years. They have three grown children, all entrepreneurs, and they enjoy spending time with their eleven grandchildren. Visit his website at: http://www.48days.com/wisdommeetspassion

Publication date: July 3, 2012