Many people I meet don’t have a strategy for negotiating their salary and compensation package. They come to me after receiving a new job offer and desire direction on how to maximize compensation. While there are numerous ways in which to find what is fair, it should not be based off of what you have been earning. Here are a few tips to improve the quality of your negotiation conversation.

First, uncover your competition. Before there is an offer on the table, ask the interviewer questions such as, “Can you tell me where you are in the hiring process?” or, “How many people are you interviewing for this position?” If you discover that you are their only current candidate, you will have more leverage during the negotiation process and you may be able to command a higher salary.

Next, do your homework and base your compensation expectations on like roles at like facilities.Rather than projecting based on what you earned in a previous position, review the PGA Compensation Reporting Tool or call me to assist in determining your market value, calculate the value of your benefits package and assess the overall quality of the offer. As you can imagine, compensation structure varies by facility and it is worth noting that a number of factors can influence. These could include

  • the location of your facility, whether section, state or chapter
  • the facility type- private for-profit or member-owned, municipal, daily fee, etc.
  • number of holes
  • peak green/guest fee
  • club’s initiation fee and annual dues
  • years in the job title
  • cost of living
  • where the facility perceives it ranks in relation to other area facilities or facilities of a similar nature.

Discuss your salary expectations in terms of what is fair and reasonable. Don’t ask for a certain salary because that is what you think you need to earn in order to pay your rent. Instead, give an explanation for why the salary you are requesting correlates to the value you will bring to the facility.

Think outside the box, and be flexible. If an employer can’t offer you the base compensation you had hoped for, maybe they can offer you compelling incentives, a performance bonus or cover professional education and tournament expenses.

All a salary suggests is what someone was willing to pay you at a particular time. It is best to be ready for negotiation by knowing your competition, doing your homework and knowing the other variables that may assist in adding up to the number you feel is fair.

Please feel free to contact me anytime for assistance with compensation and new offers. I am happy to strategize with you.

Contact Carol Pence by calling (510) 706-1583 or via e-mail at