Life is full of negotiations and compromises. However, when we think about negotiating a job offer, the stereotypes of greedy, bossy and uncommitted people quickly surface. Many people fear that negotiating a job offer will lead to tension in the workplace, or even cause them to lose an offer*. Consequently, many people shy away from negotiating and from asking for a better work experience for themselves. To help us navigate the complexities of negotiating a job offer, McGill’s Career Planning Services (CaPS) hosted a workshop called “Negotiating Your Academic Job Offer” on March 30th, presented by Dr. Niem Huynh, as part of the Academic Career Week. Here, I summarize the main strategies for negotiating a job offer.
I had a meeting with the PI (principle investigator) of my lab today, not about my project, but about my plans for the future, and for the first time, I mentioned my intentions of applying to medical school this upcoming fall. Training students like me in various lab techniques takes up a lot of valuable time and money, and so usually labs prefer to hire students who are able to make a long term commitment to the lab, in order to make the time and money spent on training worthwhile. Despite my news of early application (meaning I would possibly leave his lab earlier than planned), he was incredibly supportive and gracious.