A Bad Recruiter Red Flag

This week in the Wizard Academy Graduates Facebook Page, I linked to an article entitled How to Skillfully Answer ‘What Is Your Desired Salary?’ in a Job Interview. And then asked a question of the alumni, “What are your thoughts? Is this good advice or an outdated tactic?”

The answers were amazing. A true wealth of experience and wisdom. (Seriously, if you’re not a member of that FB page you’re missing out. CLICK HERE to join.)

You don’t need to read the article. All you need is Pegeen Reilly’s response.
(Pegeen is on the board of directors of WA and totally kicks butt.)

“Bleh. The conversation described in this article is just bad – from start to finish, on all sides. First of all, by the time you are heading into an interview situation these days, you should have done your research on salary and total comp range for that particular role and level in your industry, location and that company specifically.

You should also know what you require personally both to have the life you want and to feel appropriately compensated for your work and experience. It makes absolutely zero sense to waste your time, or the recruiter’s time, avoiding a topic that could be a deal breaker.

Secondly, any recruiter who won’t provide a salary range for the role is hoping to save money and that’s a RED FLAG. Run.

My response – my only response – to these questions until we’re actually negotiating my specific offer is ‘total comp for this type of role falls into the range of x to y. Since you’re asking me to do (more or less) [travel, senior leadership, strategic visioning, larger team, whatever….] and I have (more or fewer) years of experience than average, I would be comfortable with an offer in line with total comp for others at your company doing similar work as long as it falls in the (high/medium/low) end of that range.’

Bottom line: do your research, know your industry and your relative worth within it, and ask for what you’re worth.”

Enough said.

Thanks, Pegeen!

– Zac Smith, VC