The most common questions I am getting right now is whether or not to share total compensation during the interview process. There is so much bad advice out there that I felt compelled to write about this. Not sharing your compensation my work for a high demand job, but for the majority of the job seekers not sharing your salary information can inadvertently cost you that opportunity. I understand that peoples intentions of not sharing this info is not malicious, but rather trying to error on the side of caution. No one wants to price themselves out of any opportunity or worse leave money on the table that you need for your future.

How does not sharing salary or compensation with the recruiter limit your candidacy?

First, you can be construed as difficult to work with, or worse the recruiter feels that they have no candidate control, which causes unpredictable. Which creates a red flag for that recruiter. Secondly, from the Hiring Managers point of view is that time is always against them and they do not want to waste a ton of time to be embarrassed if they can not afford the candidate. Which happens all of the time. Usually only once to a manager and they change their hiring process.

Here is some practical advice I coach my candidates when the dreaded compensation question rears it ugly head. Here is what I teach them to say in their words.

<Interviewer Name> there are two reasons why I am here today. First, money is important.. Secondly, and more important is opportunity. I see a lot of opportunity here at <ABC Company>. Because of this opportunity I do not want to price myself out of this job so I would entertain your strongest offer.

(Wait few seconds and then begin to share your current salary, stock options and hits you would take by leaving, benefits etc… Don’t take hours discussing this just a high-level overview. The deeper discussions are more appropriate if an offer is coming.)

RESULT: The interview was told that you are excited about what you are hearing about and secondly, you are savvy so when the times comes to an offer and they want you they will make you an attractive offer. Then you need to make the decision if this is the right opportunity for you.

I hope you found this information useful and it helps you land the opportunity you are targeting.