No one teaches you salary negotiation in college or business school. It is one of those things you just have to figure out on your own. But, what you negotiate at your first job will affect the salary of all of your future jobs. I wish I knew that.
That is why I am sharing my own salary negotiation experiences.
My first real professional job was when I was still in my junior year of college. I felt very lucky to even have a job not to mention the fact that they were paying part of my tuition in exchange for my 105-20 hours per work each week. Score! So when the salary of $26,000 annually was offered to me, I thought great! That was more than I ever made before and I was really not working full time there anyways so it didn’t really matter. Any money was better than no money, right.
So there was absolutely no negotiating at all. I just said sounds good, took the job and I was happy. Looking back I just shake my head, I mean what was I thinking. I was truly unprepared for my first professional job.
Why hadn’t ANYONE told me anything about negotiating and how important that first salary was. Not my professors, not my parents, and surely not my friends because salary was ALWAYS a taboo subject. (None of my friends had jobs anyways. so it didn’t really matter). I just had no idea what the right salary was that I was supposed to ask for and so naive to trust that the employer was treating me fairly.
So that was my first experience in salary negotiating. It involved no salary negotiation.