Negotiators use the bogey tactic to pretend that an issue of little or no importance is very important. Then, later in the negotiation, the issue can be traded for a major concession of actual importance.
This is a technique that candidates can use effectively. The first step is to know what’s important to you in a job. Is it a high salary? A certain title? A flexible work schedule? Bonuses? However, that does not mean you have to reveal how much each of these items actually mean to you to the hiring manager.
Example: After receiving an offer, you realize that the cost of health insurance will be $300/month ($3,600/year) more than what you are paying at your current job. You could present this number as a very important issue early on, and later negotiate an extra week vacation as a concession or perhaps a $2,500 signing bonus toward making up the difference.
The truth? The insurance costs weren’t as important as you let on. Your spouse is close to landing a new job with great benefits, and you can go on their plan a few months from now – it’s the extra vacation time that was actually a higher priority for you.
Jim Hopkinson is an author, writer, and speaker living in New York City. His focus is on career development for the new economy, showing how new media, technology and branding are changing how people look at their career and lifestyle. Read more...