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Negotiating your salary? Stick to precise numbers

Could rounding off your numbers be hurting you chance at negotiations? A new study by Columbia Business School suggests that using a precise number in salary negotiations could not only get you more money but also command more respect.

Precise numbers, researchers say, imply a level of knowledge and investigation which is likely to return a counter offer closer to the mark you are after then using a round number. When you use a precise number the assumption is that you know your value and have researched the market; rounded number seems vaguer and less convincing and more like a “ballpark figure”. For example, a candidate asking for £57,500 might receive a counteroffer of £56,000 while a candidate asking for £60,000 might yield a counteroffer of £55,000.

You also must consider that is you are rounding off your number then they are rounding off theirs too; though you may round up and they may round down, increasing the gap between what you want and what they can offer.

Specificity has its downside though; those who use exact numbers are considered rigid and unaccommodating which could hinder negotiations. In these cases, it needs to be a judgement call depending on the power dynamics of the conversation; sometimes it is best to seem unyielding and at other times it is best to appear flexible.

Read the study below for more information