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by SixFigureStart | August 12, 2009

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Okay, perhaps it's time for a little optimism (courtesy of The Wall Street Journal). Alexandra Levit takes on the question of how to negotiate a shinier salary when that job offer finally comes through.

Her recommended approach? Above all, it's preparation. Know the compensatory landscape in the profession, and also support your salary request with hard(ish) facts, as in exactly how your expertise will translate into better numbers or value for the firm. Be realistic, but don't compromise too much. And if the potential employer seems a bit reluctant to bargain, ask about the possibility of revisiting the topic in another six and/or twelve months. The company will surely appreciate your candor, and you may even pick up some points in the "first impression" department (as in, "That was nervy of him/her to play hardball, but I like that confidence").

--Posted by Todd Obolsky, Vault Staff Writer

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