You know that negotiation is one of my favorite things – especially when you’re switching companies! A job transition is the perfect time to negotiate your salary up. When it comes to a successful salary negotiation, one of the most important things you can do is salary research. Take the time to find out what a competitive salary is for your new role, and for particular companies.
Especially in the corporate world, different companies pay very differently for the same position. Even within a company, pay can vary significantly. Companies use pay bands to determine how much employees may make. It may not sound like a big deal, but some positions have pay bands that span a range of $50K or more. In theory, you will be paid more for more experience and more education. In reality, these things do matter – but, so does your ability to negotiate.
You may wonder where to begin your salary research. There are many different sources online where you can do salary research – too many to cover here. I will touch on just a few that will be the best sources of information for beginning your salary research – including a new way to research salary that rolls out later this week!
Glassdoor has two options for salary research. The first is researching what a particular company pays for a certain role. In other words, search for a company that you like – by name. Then, enter a location (or you can leave location blank) and select the dropdown for “Salary.”
This simple search will give you a list of different roles at the company, and the pay range for each. You should search through the list to find jobs that are the most similar to the one you hope to interview for. Notice that each job will have both a pay range (shown as min and max), and the number of people who have reported their salary. Glassdoor provides self-reported data, so the data coming out is only as good as the data going in. Honestly though, the data going in appears to be pretty solid.
Their second option for salary research is a tool called the Know Your Worth Tool. It allows you to track your value over time, compared to the others in your area.
Salary.com has been around for years, but still provides basic salary information that can be helpful to your search. The site allows you to search by job title and city or zip code.
It provides a bell curve that will share with you what people with your title are making on average – and at the top and bottom ends of the curve. You can also compare base salary to base and bonus.
Because Salary.com isn’t industry or company specific, the data provided can be a bit vague, but I would argue that it’s still a decent data point to collect during your salary research.
You may never have thought much about it before, but Indeed also offers salary data. When you visit their site, click the “Find Salaries” tab. You will be taken to a screen where you can search by job title or company. If you search by job title, you’re taken to a second screen where you can narrow down your results by city and company. If you search by company, you will be taken to a screen where you can narrow it down based on job title within that company. Indeed provides a range, similar to both Glassdoor.com and Salary.com.
Today, you can find estimated salaries on LinkedIn by clicking on the “Jobs” tab and then clicking the link for “LinkedIn Salary.” You can search both by job title and by city. LinkedIn provides a range for both median base salary and median total compensation. And, you can narrow the results down by industry and years of experience.
But, even better than this — LinkedIn is adding a new feature to their site this week that will allow you to access the salary for a specific job posting you’re interested in. They want to help bring more transparency to conversations about salary. You know that I love this.
Here’s how the new “Salary Insights” will work. For many (but not all) jobs, you will begin to see a salary for each job posting. It will be listed as either “Expected” salary or “Estimated” salary. Expected is the salary that is provided by the company. Expected salary is LinkedIn’s estimate based on other data they have that matches the title, company, and location.
This new feature goes live later this week. Try it, and let me know what you think! I’m so excited to see increased pay transparency as part of the application process.
Salary Research Summary
Your ability to negotiate for the best salary will be determined by the hard work you put in to research what you’re worth. But, lucky for all of us, this process is getting easier and easier! The more salary research you do, the more likely you are to be able to ask for what’s fair. And, that’s all we really need, right? To be paid fairly, and to be treated with respect – those two things are key!
Good luck with your salary research! Let me know what you think about these methods.
A very difficult decision we often face as professionals is whether or not to pursue a MBA, PhD, or some other terminal degree. I hear from professionals each week that are wading through this important choice. One of the things that makes this decision tough is that many graduate programs prefer that you have work experience. That means that by the time you’re thinking of going to graduate school, you might have a good paying job, a spouse, a mortgage, and kids.
I want to share a little with you today about how I decided to go to graduate school. My hope is that the thought process may help you to sort through your own complex decision making process.
For starters, I suspected in undergraduate school that I wanted to pursue a MBA. The thing is, my major in college was computer and systems engineering, with a concentration in manufacturing. My degree was like a combination of computer programming, electrical engineering, and mechanical engineering.
The problem was, I started to think I might want to pursue a career in another field, like marketing. This was especially tough because hiring managers rarely thought of me for anything outside of technology back then. I remember being invited to interview for an engineering management role with Motorola. I agreed to the interview, if they would also allow me to interview with the marketing managers. But, my interest in marketing alone really wasn’t enough. I needed more credentials.
I considered the idea of going to business school right after college. But, I did a little research. When I spoke to other professionals, I learned that having business experience under my belt would give me a better foundation for my MBA studies. It would give me experience to pull from during class discussions. And honestly, it would give me a few years to confirm that business school was the right route for me (before investing time and money into it).
So, then what? Well, I needed to decide where to go – and what kind of program I was interested in.
When it comes to the type of program, there are a few options. Some programs allow you to study online while others allow you to go in person. When it comes to business school, a big part of the value you gain is through the real life connections you make. And, at least for me, in person learning is typically better than online. So, I knew I wanted to be in an in person program.
Then, I had to decide if I wanted to study part-time, or go back to school full-time. Going back full-time typically requires you to quit your job to focus on school. For me, this was the best option. I wanted to focus completely on my studies. And, I wanted to finish my program in a reasonable amount of time. Studying full-time allowed me to complete my MBA in 15-months. If I had been a part-time student, this may have taken years.
Next, I decided what sort of concentration I wanted to have. I decided that I wanted a concentration in entrepreneurial management. I also wanted a program that was heavy in marketing options. And, I wanted a program that values giving back to the community. On top of these requirements, I was interested to go to a school that was near where technology related things were happening – in California. I was going through this process around 2003, so this list quickly narrowed my choices down. Entrepreneurial management in particular was hard to come by back then because it was still a new discipline for business schools.
Once I had my list of schools ready, I started to look up data on their programs. It’s almost like looking up reliability statistics on a car before you buy it. Long story short, not every MBA is worth the same amount of money. I looked at the rankings in US News & World Report. I looked up a report that’s called the ‘post-graduation report.’ Most schools publish these reports on their career site. They share how much money their graduates are making.
Then, I did an ROI calculation. Yes, you heard me right. A return on investment calculation. Business school is an investment. I compared the amount of salary I would give up (by quitting my job), along with the cost of school and living expenses – to the amount I would make after completing business school (or at least a decent estimate). I was only willing to pay a high tuition if I would end up making a high paycheck after graduation.
Alright, so that really narrowed down the schools. I ended up selecting Pepperdine University in Malibu, California.
Well, the last piece is this. How was I going to pay for the program? This was a tall order. I was in my early 20s and the thought of dropping over fifty thousand dollars on an additional degree was a big decision.
I worked for three years before going to graduate school. I lived cheaply, and was able to save around $1,000 per month for school. I stashed the money in a savings account. By the time I quit my job to go to school, I had saved over $30,000. To make up the extra money I needed for tuition and rent, I did two things. I asked the school for a scholarship, and I took out student loans.
Student loans are a hot topic these days. I won’t dive into all the pros and cons here. But, in my case, with a lot of research, they worked for me. They were low interest, and they allowed me to put myself through school.
So, what happened? Well, I graduated with my MBA in 15 months. Companies started to consider me for jobs outside of computer programming (like marketing). And, I was able to land job offers that were twice what I was making before graduate school.
For me, the decision to get my MBA was a good one. But, as I mentioned before… not every degree is created equal. The only way to make the right decision for you is to do lots of research. Calculate the return on investment. Talk to people. And, time it right. Don’t go too soon, or too late.
I know — it’s a lot to think about. But, it’s a big decision. Best of luck as you make yours. 🙂
Happy February! Can you believe it – we are really into 2018. If you haven’t started on your 2018 job search, now is the time.
In celebration of starting off strong, I want to share my January recap with you. I had a number of wonderful opportunities to share tips on job searching throughout the month. Below you will find links to an article I wrote for Forbes about 2018 job search trends, a TV interview from Live @ 9 on WREG News Channel 3, four new episodes of the Copeland Coaching Podcast, and more!
If you haven’t already, please be sure to subscribe to the Copeland Coaching Podcast on Apple Podcasts. It makes the show easier for other job seekers to find.
And with that, I hope you enjoy these tips from January! Have a wonderful week!
Hunting for that perfect job
I had the opportunity to speak about 2018 employment trends on Live @ 9. Huge thank you to Marybeth Conley and Alex Coleman for bringing me back again to talk about what you can do to prepare for your 2018 job search.
If you missed the segment, you can click here to watch the entire thing, and get all the tips.
What to Expect If You’re Hiring or Looking for Work in 2018
I had the opportunity to write another piece for Forbes this month about what job searchers can expect this year.
Last year was an exciting time to find a new job. Despite natural disasters and political changes, the U.S. added over 1.9 million new jobs. This year stands to be another year of change.
Wouldn’t it be great to know just what we can expect in 2018? Glassdoor.com has released a study to help predict the days ahead. Spearheaded by Glassdoor Chief Economist Dr. Andrew Chamberlain, the study points out the next big disrupters in jobs and hiring.
To learn about all of the 2018 job search trends, and what you should do, check out the entire Forbes piece here.
Copeland Coaching Podcast
I had the honor of interviewing four great guests this month for the Copeland Coaching Podcast. You can check out all of the episodes on Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts. If you haven’t already, please also be sure to subscribe to the Copeland Coaching Podcast in Apple Podcasts. It makes the show easier for others to find it.
Joe Navaro, Author & Body Language Expert – Joe is an international bestselling author and body language expert. He spent 25 years at the FBI, working as both an agent and supervisor in the areas of counterintelligence and counter terrorism. We talk about non-verbal communication and how to improve your body language during job interviews.
Mark Sanborn, Author of Potential Principle – Mark is an international inspirational keynote speaker and author of seven best-selling books that have topped the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today. We talk about escalating your performance at work, and how to be identified for internal promotions.
Amy Wrzesniewski, Professor at Yale University – Amy is a professor of organizational behavior at the School of Management at Yale University. Her research interests focus on how people make meaning of their work in difficult contexts, including stigmatized occupations, virtual work, and the absence of work. We talk about the tie between purpose and meaning of work, and how closely our career is tied to our identity.
Isaac Lake, Career Rebranding – Isaac is a Manager of Brand Performance Support at Hilton. Previously, Isaac worked at the University of Memphis where he was the Manager of Facilities and Programs at the University Center. We talk about the biggest difference in working in corporate and in education – and tips on how you can make a major career shift.
I joined Dr. Scott Davis on his podcast, To Market. Scott is a professor at the University of Houston. We talked about how to manage your job search, and how to keep the entire process a secret. We also talked about how to negotiate and when to look for your next gig after business school.
Check out the entire episode on Apple Podcasts here.
15 Best Ways To Build A Company Culture That Thrives
I’m thrilled to be included in this piece on Forbes. It may come as no surprise to you that my tip for creating a culture that thrives is to create a respectful workplace.
In 2018, one of the most important parts of building company culture is related to creating a workplace that is respectful. In light of so many corporate problems in 2017, we need to work together to treat others with the same level of respect that we want to be treated with — even when that person is different than us or may have different personal values than we do.
Check out all 15 of the tips for building a great company culture on the Forbes website.
The Emotionally Intelligent Recruiter
I spoke to Caroline Stokes on her podcast, The Emotionally Intelligent Recruiter. Caroline is the Founder of her firm at FORWARD Executive Search & Executive Coaching. We break down the many ways that candidates face emotional challenges when job hunting. We also talk about ways that recruiters and HR representatives can mitigate some of the emotional tolls.
Check out the entire episode on the Emotionally Intelligent Recruiter website.
The Ultimate Layoff Survival Guide
If you’ve been recently laid off, check out this piece by Magnify Money. It gives great tips for the first things you should do if you’ve been let go. Here’s my tip:
Exit your current job with grace. Anything you can do to leave on a good note is a good idea. Thank you notes and goodbye lunches all help to give positive closure.
To check out all the tips, visit the Magnify Money website here.
Dear Hiring Managers: These 10 behaviors are scaring off your interviewees
Notice a theme this month? It’s all about creating a culture of respect. Ivy Exec included me in their piece on how to be better hiring managers. Here’s my tip:
When the hiring manager shows signs of being unreliable or inconsistent, the job seeker notices — and it does factor into their decision whether or not to accept a job offer. The hiring manager should treat the candidate the way they would also want to be treated. Be on time. Be prepared. Provide feedback to the candidate in the timeline promised. Treat the candidate with respect.
Check out all the tips on the Ivy Exec website.
As you already know, I started my career in the technology world. My undergraduate degree is computer and systems engineering, with a concentration in manufacturing. It’s like a combination of computer programming and electrical engineering, with a little mechanical engineering for good measure.
A decent part of my career has been spent creating new things. Whether it’s a technology, a website, or a marketing strategy – I was working on some kind of new idea.
But, this is the thing. New ideas fail. They fail a lot. They’re risky.
So, how do you get technologists to take the risks that are needed in order to come up with new ideas?
There’s more than one answer to this question, but one practice is what’s known as “test and learn.” According to Wikipedia, the test and learn process is designed to answer three questions.
- What impact will the program have on key performance indicators if executed across the network or customer base?
- Will the program have a larger impact on some stores/customers than others?
- Which components of the idea are actually working?
In other words, try something. See if it works. If it doesn’t work, adjust it and try something else. A CEO of Capital One, Richard Fairbank, described the test and learn process as, “a marketing revolution that can be applied to many businesses.”
So, what if that ‘business’ were actually your ‘job search’? What if you could start a job search without knowing all the answers? Or, you could go for an interview at a company without knowing for sure if you would take a job offer, if it was given?
When it comes to job searching, there’s not just one way to do it. There’s not one perfect elevator pitch or one right resume format. Thinking there’s one right answer will leave you frustrated to say the least.
Take a little pressure off of yourself. You don’t have to get it right the first time, or every time. But, if you don’t try at all, you’ll definitely fail.
If you give something a shot and it doesn’t work the way you want it to, adjust your approach. Then, try again. And, adjust your approach again, and try again. This is a never ending process.
I truly believe a test and learn approach might free us a bit from the idea of failure. And, it would give us more time to focus on landing that next job.
There’s a question that many new job seekers are thinking about. “Do I really need to use Linkedin, and how can I use it effectively?”
The first answer is straightforward. Yes, you need to use LinkedIn. You need to use it for your job search. And, honestly, you need to use it before your job search. It should be part of your professional brand – similar to carrying a business card. Integrating LinkedIn into your daily business practice will make it both easier and more effective in the long run.
So, the next question is around how to use LinkedIn effectively. Sometimes, people ask me if there’s a course they can take. And actually, I do teach a workshop about LinkedIn. But in reality, you don’t need a special class to use LinkedIn.
The main thing you need to do to become good at LinkedIn is use LinkedIn. You heard me right. Use it. It’s like Facebook. If you only looked at Facebook every six months, you might wonder how it works. It would be a bit unclear how to find your friends or how to accept party invitations. But, if you’re like most people, you use Facebook every day. And, after a while, it becomes second nature.
So, where to begin? First, you need a profile picture. I get it. You may not really like putting up photos of yourself. You may not have a recent photo you like. I totally hear you. But, in order to use LinkedIn effectively, you’ve gotta do it. Don’t feel like you need to hire a professional photographer. A friend could even take a decent photo on your smartphone. Just be sure that you look professional and the photo is only you. Ideally, you want to smile.
Next, fill out your profile. Put in as much information as you can. Include a mini-bio of yourself in the Summary section. Include your jobs in the Experience section, along with detail about what you did. Include your degrees (but omit the year you graduated). Fill it out – all of it.
Then, ask your trusted contacts to leave reviews of your work under the Recommendations section.
If you’re really feeling ambitious, turn on the “open candidate” feature. This is where you let recruiters now that you’re open for new jobs. It’s also a place where you can leave notes for recruiters about your dream job, including desired job titles, locations, and industries.
Now, get out there and use LinkedIn. Follow companies, participate in discussions, share articles, connect to colleagues and yes – do consider connecting to someone you don’t already know in real life. After all, how are you going to meet new people if you don’t meet new people?
That’s it. Just like Facebook, the more you use LinkedIn, the easier it gets. The more intuitive it becomes. The more aware of little features you become. It’s just that simple.
Remember, don’t put information on LinkedIn that you wouldn’t want your boss to see. Don’t share confidential company stats. And, definitely don’t SAY that you are looking for a job.
There’s no secret to it. Well, except maybe this one. The secret to using LinkedIn is to use LinkedIn. :c)