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 finished another teaching assistantship last semester quite happily. I look forward to having the extra time, which perhaps is our most precious resource. I have really enjoyed teaching my students and sharing with them the wonders and in some cases the dangers of the lab. Most of my interactions and relationships with students are positive. I have always wanted to see the students achieve their goals in the course and in their career. As TAs, we are obviously in a position to guide student through a course, but sometimes we may even point student in the direction of obtaining an internship or honors project in a research lab. I am delighted to see that past students are doing well in their new positions in research labs. Even better is to hear what they learned was useful! I find this dynamic between TAs and students interesting. After all, TAs are themselves students. I am sure there are those who may believe the “A” in TA ends six letters short of “assistant”. For those of you trekking on into the new semester here are my two cents about getting along with your TA and forging a positive constructive relationship, which will undoubtedly be of benefit. (more…)