You get down to one or maybe two shortlisted candidates and you are wondering what package to offer him or her.

What do you next? State the package on offer? Ask what her current package is?

Contrarian thought of the day. Ask her what base salary she would like to start on? What base salary would do it for her if she was successful at getting hired? You state that if she is hired the number she comes up will be the number she starts on.

The negotiation advantage of that move:

  1. The other side goes first.
  2. You know the salary that motivates her.
  3. Assuming it is a sensible number, you get an insight into how savvy the new recruit will be with business decisions.
  4. You start off the relationship in a great place.
  5. If the number is way ahead of your thinking you get the chance to explore her thinking to test your logic or move on to a candidate with a better fit.