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Negotiating for the money

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Negotiating for the money

Postby Paul » Wed Jan 12, 2005 8:21 pm

I'm going for interviews for a couple of faculty positions at the end of the month. Both jobs would be great moves and are at excellent institutions. Also, both know about each other.

With this seeming like such an important step to be taking in my career I obviously want to maximize the amount of start-up funds etc. on the table yet, at the same time, these positions are few and far between and I don't want to shoot myself in the foot. Any advice on how to balance the negotiations so that I'm not making it obvious I really want the position and getting played into accepting a cheap offer?...assuming I get offers!!

On a different note entirely, I want to extend a huge thank you to Dave, Bill and Naledi and the numerous contributors on the site. Your advice about ways to obtain interviews has been invaluable. These two interviews have come about because of two key comments on this site: 1) Networking...someone I have never met but who knows my work didn't have anything when I wrote to her but suggested contacting someone else who she thought would be an excellent fit for my interests. She even offered to vouch for the quality of my work. 2) Get noticed! I used Daves technique of sending my CV in a USPS priority envelope. The assistant has told me that she thought it was a courier envelope and opened it first!!

Many thanks.

Paul
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Negotiating for the money

Postby Andrew » Wed Jan 12, 2005 9:34 pm

It would help if you have a detailed budget of how you will spend your startup money. This may require that you speak with vendors and get some quotes, but a 2-3 page typed itemized list will make a great impression when they ask you to explain why you need what you are asking for.
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Negotiating for the money

Postby Dave Jensen » Wed Jan 12, 2005 10:23 pm

Paul,

Thanks for the kind words. Glad to have other people come on this site regularly and confirm that networking helped them along. Also, good to know about the assistant's reaction to your mail. These folks are important to your effort, aren't they!

I'd like to say that you get what you put into this forum. Paul, over the last couple of months, you have provided a lot of very savvy advice to scientists on this forum. There is something about the universe that rewards people who help others . . . (sounds like my Sedona AZ home is starting to show with "new age" comments!). Anyway, your wonderful help to the forum was rewarded, and that's great.

I'll let others address your upcoming negotiations.

Thanks, Dave
"One of the most powerful networking practices is to provide immediate value to a new connection. This means the moment you identify a way to help someone, take action." - Lewis Howes
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Negotiating for the money

Postby Bill L. » Thu Jan 13, 2005 4:34 pm

Hi Paul,

Thank you for you kind comments! I don't know if you can access it, but the best deconstruction of the faculty compensation package I've seen is Vid Mohan-Ram's article, "Negotiation Role Play" at Science NextWave. It's fantastic because not only does it explain the parts of a compensation package (start-up lab costs, etc.), but it has a detailed role play conversation between a department chair and a candidate who are negotiating for each part of the the package, with commentary.

It's at:

http://nextwave.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/full/2000/03/07/1

Be well,

Bill L. & Naledi S.
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Negotiating for the money

Postby Paul » Thu Jan 13, 2005 6:05 pm

Thanks Bill and Naledi...that is a fascinating article and the information should be helpful.

Its this type of thing that is so key to junior scientists but is rarely addressed by mentors or career advisors.
Paul
 

Negotiating for the money

Postby Paul » Wed Feb 02, 2005 12:21 pm

Just wanted to follow up on this thread to share my experiences...

From preparing myself from the links you guys mentioned I really liked the concept of negotiating being viewed as a "same side of the table" discussion, rather than an "opposing side" discussion. The department I just interviewed with was fantastic and there was an obvious match between what they need and what I want. The 2 day interviewed finished with the Chief coming out straight and telling me he wants me to join and that we should work out the package I am looking for. Instead of coming out with a high number, in the hope of coming down to an acceptable number, I put it simply that I want a salary that matches that of the other assistant professor he has recent recruited got. I basically put it to the chief that, after a couple of months if I found out that this guy was on more than me I would be unhappy since we are equally experienced and, conversely, he would be unhappy if I was on more than him. So, we immediately had an exact number on the table (which was more than I was aiming for anyway) and it enforced my image as a team player.

The advice really paid off, I feel. Thanks!
Paul
 

Negotiating for the money

Postby Dave Jensen » Wed Feb 02, 2005 1:38 pm

Thanks for the compliment paid to the forum, Paul. You've been a valuable contributor, and I am happy you are seeing some personal benefits.

I hope we can count on your continued expertise even after you are off on that tenure track and running your own department!

Dave Jensen, Moderator
"One of the most powerful networking practices is to provide immediate value to a new connection. This means the moment you identify a way to help someone, take action." - Lewis Howes
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Negotiating for the money

Postby Bill L. » Wed Feb 02, 2005 3:47 pm

Congratulations Paul! We're really glad it worked out for you, and thanks for following up with what happened. It's always interesting to hear about the outcomes of strategies and approaches.

Be well,

Bill L. & Naledi S.
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Is this useful, Paul?

Postby David » Wed Feb 02, 2005 4:15 pm

Paul
Congratulations on your success.

You may know of this resource already but just in case, I thought I would mention it.
The Burroughs Welcome Trust produced a great book for young faculty which has quite a number of great tips. On their site one can download the book as well as see some interesting videos from such luminaries and Thomas Cech
http://www.hhmi.org/grants/office/graduate/labmanagement.html

best wishes

david

ps it has stuff on negotiating the position but I am afraid I just read you post today so I didn't send it before!
David
 


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