Career Expert Says Trying To Negotiate $2000 More In Salary A Month Is Not Important — ‘Don’t Be Obsessed With Cash’

He pointed out that most people are unaware of other perks that could be negotiated into a contract upon being hired.

Human resource manager interviewing young applicant while looking at her resume Akarawut | Shutterstock

It's no secret that many working-class Americans are unhappy with their salaries, often struggling to make ends meet and support themselves despite working 40+ hours a week. Often, job seekers are encouraged to negotiate their salaries when they are offered a new job for this very reason.

However, according to a career expert named Devon Hennig, job seekers and corporate workers should worry more about other benefits instead of asking for more money because it's a huge "red flag" for company owners, hiring managers, and recruiters.


He claimed that negotiating $2,000 more in salary a month is unimportant. 

"Asking for $20,000 more on a $200,000+ offer is a red flag," Hennig insisted. "Most young directors, VPs, and other execs are obsessed with cash mostly because they don't know all the other things they can negotiate or maybe they're intimidated by equity or whatever."

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Hennig explained that workers are then worrying about whether or not they should ask for more just because they most likely can, contemplating if they should attempt to get $220,000 after initially being offered $200,000. In response, Hennig remarked that it shouldn't matter, breaking down the math by pointing out that earning $2,000 a month is $500 after taxes per paycheck.

He continued, saying that if you're working at a senior level for a company, money and salaries shouldn't matter. Showing a list of the most valuable parts of a senior-level offer, Hennig encouraged workers to negotiate for things like extended severance, milestone payments, preferred travel terms, extended health benefits, and funding participation. 

"If you're a young VP or executive, it's not that you're bad at negotiating job offers; it's just that you don't really know what's possible yet," Hennig remarked. "Your imagination is limited by your previous roles."

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He recalled that in his first VP role, he knew that he wanted some cool perks, like business-class travel and sign-on bonuses, but he was unaware of how to ask for things like that without coming across as entitled or rude. 


He encouraged senior directors and first-time VPs to learn how to ask for the benefits that truly matter, which, to Hennig, wasn't a higher salary. "You will feel more confident and you won't be second-guessing if you got the best deal."

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Despite Hennig's insistence, salary is the leading cause of employee dissatisfaction in many workplaces.

According to the Pew Research Center, workers with higher incomes are more likely than those with lower and middle incomes to say they are extremely or very satisfied with their job overall and to say the same about the benefits their employer provides, their opportunities for training and to develop new skills, how much they are paid, and their opportunities for promotion.

In a survey conducted by the Society for Human Resource Management, salary is by far the leading cause of employee dissatisfaction among U.S. workers, cited by 47% of respondents in a recent survey. Other leading causes of dissatisfaction include workload (24%), lack of opportunities for advancement (21%), and the employee's manager or supervisor (21%).


female employee shaking hands during negotiation Nicola Katie / Canva Pro

Similarly, when it comes to negotiating a salary, such a thing can be a daunting and stressful process for many job seekers. According to Fidelity Investments, 58% of young professionals do not negotiate their job offers. There's a level of fear and hesitation that if you attempt to ask for more money, you might lose the job offer altogether or come across as overly demanding. However, if a job is willing to offer you a spot in their company, it means they value your skills and are likely open to some level of negotiation. 

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In the same Fidelity Investments survey, 85% of Americans — and 87% of professionals ages 25 to 35 — who countered on salary, other compensation or benefits, or both pay and other compensation and benefits got at least some of what they asked for. If you choose to advocate for yourself, many execs will respect that, especially if you're good at negotiating and understand your worth.


"If you understand what you can ask for, if you are doing a good job showing your value, it would help increase the confidence you have going into any salary negotiations," Kelly Lannan, senior vice president of emerging customers at Fidelity Investments, told CNBC News. With the cost of living steadily increasing, many people can't afford to live off a mediocre salary anymore.

It never hurts to ask, no matter what position you're interviewing for or acquiring. At the end of the day, if the answer ends up being "no," that job offer won't be rescinded, and there is always an opportunity to ask for a higher salary down the road after showing that company the kind of work you can do.

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Nia Tipton is a Chicago-based entertainment, news, and lifestyle writer whose work delves into modern-day issues and experiences.