Did I screw up? (Salary Requirement)

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Did I screw up? (Salary Requirement)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jan 04, 2019 7:51 pm

I think I screwed up during a telephone pre-interview. Long story short: interview is for a first year associate position in big firm (60+ attorneys in 15+ areas of law), position is related to a very small department of the firm (5 attorneys, working 9-5 most of the time - immigration law only), HR person asked for my salary requirements and after resisting as much as I could I said that, with the little info I have, it's a negotiable $70,000-$80,000.

Looking online at that firm, their average salary is around 100+k but I figured I would stay lower because immigration law averages 65k in smaller firms - which is most other firms in town.

1) Was it fair to assume that their average salaries are referred to areas that require a bigger time commitment?
2) If I screwed up, how do I get out of this? In person interview next week.

Thanks guys.

worklifewhat

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Re: Did I screw up? (Salary Requirement)

Postby worklifewhat » Fri Jan 04, 2019 8:03 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I think I screwed up during a telephone pre-interview. Long story short: interview is for a first year associate position in big firm (60+ attorneys in 15+ areas of law), position is related to a very small department of the firm (5 attorneys, working 9-5 most of the time - immigration law only), HR person asked for my salary requirements and after resisting as much as I could I said that, with the little info I have, it's a negotiable $70,000-$80,000.

Looking online at that firm, their average salary is around 100+k but I figured I would stay lower because immigration law averages 65k in smaller firms - which is most other firms in town.

1) Was it fair to assume that their average salaries are referred to areas that require a bigger time commitment?
2) If I screwed up, how do I get out of this? In person interview next week.

Thanks guys.


If you would be happy with $70-80k, which I assume you must be if you gave that number, then you didn't screw up. There is not way for us to know whether you could get more. For all we know, you coming in lower makes you the more attractive candidate of many. Also, just because you gave that range doesn't mean that they'll offer you a salary within that range if they would typically pay more.

BrainsyK

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Re: Did I screw up? (Salary Requirement)

Postby BrainsyK » Fri Jan 04, 2019 8:21 pm

I would assume that averrage includes all seniorities in all department of all ranks (unless otherwise stated) so the number is functionally useless without more context.

Anonymous User
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Re: Did I screw up? (Salary Requirement)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jan 04, 2019 9:03 pm

OP here.

Yes, I would be fine in that range but obviously I'd prefer to push it as much as reasonably possible without being stupid. I mean, last week a small immigration firm (3 lawyers) offered me an associate position for 48k...

I was just wondering if my 70-80k range sounded ridiculously low. I don't see anyone shocked yet, so I assume I didn't screw up.

Also, the moment I mentioned 70-80 they asked right away when I was available to go in person. I guess it was below their max.

sparty99

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Re: Did I screw up? (Salary Requirement)

Postby sparty99 » Sat Jan 05, 2019 1:56 am

Anonymous User wrote:OP here.

Yes, I would be fine in that range but obviously I'd prefer to push it as much as reasonably possible without being stupid. I mean, last week a small immigration firm (3 lawyers) offered me an associate position for 48k...

I was just wondering if my 70-80k range sounded ridiculously low. I don't see anyone shocked yet, so I assume I didn't screw up.

Also, the moment I mentioned 70-80 they asked right away when I was available to go in person. I guess it was below their max.



Yes, you screwed up. Never be the first to commit to a number, even a range.

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Re: Did I screw up? (Salary Requirement)

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Jan 05, 2019 2:16 am

sparty99 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OP here.

Yes, I would be fine in that range but obviously I'd prefer to push it as much as reasonably possible without being stupid. I mean, last week a small immigration firm (3 lawyers) offered me an associate position for 48k...

I was just wondering if my 70-80k range sounded ridiculously low. I don't see anyone shocked yet, so I assume I didn't screw up.

Also, the moment I mentioned 70-80 they asked right away when I was available to go in person. I guess it was below their max.



Yes, you screwed up. Never be the first to commit to a number, even a range.


I know. They asked so many times that in the end I just didn't know how to refuse to answer anymore. I guess that I will pay for this lack of firmness. IF I get the job...

sparty99

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Re: Did I screw up? (Salary Requirement)

Postby sparty99 » Sat Jan 05, 2019 2:46 am

Anonymous User wrote:
sparty99 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OP here.

Yes, I would be fine in that range but obviously I'd prefer to push it as much as reasonably possible without being stupid. I mean, last week a small immigration firm (3 lawyers) offered me an associate position for 48k...

I was just wondering if my 70-80k range sounded ridiculously low. I don't see anyone shocked yet, so I assume I didn't screw up.

Also, the moment I mentioned 70-80 they asked right away when I was available to go in person. I guess it was below their max.



Yes, you screwed up. Never be the first to commit to a number, even a range.


I know. They asked so many times that in the end I just didn't know how to refuse to answer anymore. I guess that I will pay for this lack of firmness. IF I get the job...


You tell them that you are open or your main focus is finding a place where you can grow. If they insist, turn the question back to them. "What were you thinking in terms of salary?"

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Lacepiece23

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Re: Did I screw up? (Salary Requirement)

Postby Lacepiece23 » Sat Jan 05, 2019 12:20 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I think I screwed up during a telephone pre-interview. Long story short: interview is for a first year associate position in big firm (60+ attorneys in 15+ areas of law), position is related to a very small department of the firm (5 attorneys, working 9-5 most of the time - immigration law only), HR person asked for my salary requirements and after resisting as much as I could I said that, with the little info I have, it's a negotiable $70,000-$80,000.

Looking online at that firm, their average salary is around 100+k but I figured I would stay lower because immigration law averages 65k in smaller firms - which is most other firms in town.

1) Was it fair to assume that their average salaries are referred to areas that require a bigger time commitment?
2) If I screwed up, how do I get out of this? In person interview next week.

Thanks guys.


In the end, getting paid 70-80k to do 9-5 immigration work doesn't sound like a bad deal. You might bet paid twice as much in biglaw, but I can promise you that you would likely have four times the stress.

BasilHallward

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Re: Did I screw up? (Salary Requirement)

Postby BasilHallward » Sat Jan 05, 2019 3:15 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I think I screwed up during a telephone pre-interview. Long story short: interview is for a first year associate position in big firm (60+ attorneys in 15+ areas of law), position is related to a very small department of the firm (5 attorneys, working 9-5 most of the time - immigration law only), HR person asked for my salary requirements and after resisting as much as I could I said that, with the little info I have, it's a negotiable $70,000-$80,000.

Looking online at that firm, their average salary is around 100+k but I figured I would stay lower because immigration law averages 65k in smaller firms - which is most other firms in town.

1) Was it fair to assume that their average salaries are referred to areas that require a bigger time commitment?
2) If I screwed up, how do I get out of this? In person interview next week.

Thanks guys.


This is not a big firm. It's a small firm, verging on maybe being a mid-sized. I don't stress this for prestige's sake, but that this salary number for a 9-5 gig at a small shop is about the going rate, assuming it's not some kind of small plaintiff's boutique. But yeah, agree with other posters here, you shouldn't have showed your hand first.

Anonymous User
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Re: Did I screw up? (Salary Requirement)

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 10, 2019 3:33 pm

Generally if an employer asks me this question I will tell them "I am sure you will give a reasonable offer based on my experience. Salary is negotiable." I would not have given them a number. Now with that said, if they do give you an offer and if they generally start associates at say $85k I do not believe they will low ball you. Although you never know.

splitmuch

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Re: Did I screw up? (Salary Requirement)

Postby splitmuch » Mon Jan 14, 2019 2:21 pm

If by "screwed up" you mean hurt your chances of maximizing potential salary from this employer, then yes. But from what you've written in this thread it sounds like your honest, if low, number maximized your chances of being hired at all. But if they'd hire you for 80 over someone who put out a number of 100 (but would hire person 2 if you were both at 100), and you would rather work there for 80 than somewhere else for 40, then you didn't "screw up"

tyroneslothrop1

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Re: Did I screw up? (Salary Requirement)

Postby tyroneslothrop1 » Mon Jan 14, 2019 6:00 pm

Based on the size of the firm (60+), they probably have a pretty set salary scale. One easy way for a firm to have a bunch of pissed off juniors is paying them wildly divergent salaries. Some firms ask about salary up front because they don't want to take the time to interview someone who's expecting 160 when the firm pays 80.



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