Job Hunting Myth:
When I heard this from a few people, I seriously wondered if these people suffered from low self esteem.
This reminds me of something I read once in which a businessman was having trouble selling his products. What was his solution to this problem? Well, incredibly, he raised the price, and he was able to sell a lot more of his products!
Why am i telling you about this businessman? Well, what happened was that because the price of his products were much lower than the prices of the products that his competition had, people actually thought that the quality of his products was inferior. Similarly, you don’t want to put a very low price tag on yourself because people may think that you are desperate or that you don’t have high quality skills. Sometimes people grow suspicious when the quality and value of what they are getting seems to be out of sync with the price that they are paying for it. And this is even true with the value of your own intangible skill set.
Do what Warren Buffet Does
Another digression I wanted to make to really make sure that you understand this point: Warren Buffet (one of the world’s richest men as you probably know) actually made a substantial part of his fortune through the concept of value investing – whereby a company’s actual value is estimated and then compared to the stock price. If the current stock price is much less than the estimated actual value, then that stock is at a discounted price, and represents a bargain. Basically, Buffet would buy stock that was ‘cheap’ when compared to the intrinsic/actual value of the company that the stock represented. Eventually, investors will catch on and realize what the company is worth, and so the stock would go up, and Buffet became rich following this simple idea. So, knowing what something is actually worth can make a huge difference in the kind of salary that you get.
And I can also personally speak from experience about how false this myth is. I was out of the job market for nine months by choice, and in my next job I actually was able to get a 50% increase in salary compared to my former job. Because software developers are in very high demand right now (and have been for the past 15 years or so), you can often get a good hike in your salary by switching jobs. Although I don’t always recommend that you jump from one job to another too often, because you could do really well for yourself by staying with one company for a while.
But, take caution – you don’t want to put a very high price tag on yourself as well. Always be reasonable and try to figure out what the market rate is for someone with your experience, and consider other factors like the area you live in, the job you’re applying for, whether you are offered equity in the company as well, etc.
What to do when you’re asked for your salary range