“Hey, you’re a recruiter, right?”

“Yes,” I said, wondering what was coming next.

“I have an interview tomorrow,” said my friend. “How do I answer the money question?”

“Try this,” I told her:

“I’m currently getting $XXX per year plus bonus, taking me to $XXX all-in. I’m hoping for an increase, but the most important thing for me is the opportunity. I’m interested in joining your company because INSERT RESEARCH HERE. So as long as the offer is competitive I would be interested.”

If you’re underpaid, or just uncomfortable telling the employer what you’re earning, simply start with “I’m targeting $XXX per year, but the most important thing to me is the opportunity,” and continue from there.

Money is a key factor when considering a new job, but there are other, more important considerations besides money. By focusing on other factors, you can turn the money question into an opportunity to show interest.

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