Title vs. Salary

Excerpted from ”You’re Better Than Your Job Search”

By Marc Cenedella and Matthew Rothenberg


It’s always tough to land a job with a top title. Making concessions to secure one could be a mistake, however, according to career coaches. Candidates trying to land their first peak management job — one in which they have full profit-and-loss responsibility for a discrete organization — face intensive competiton when highly qualified people are scrambling for position. That’s the advice of Roy Cohen, who holds the title “master career coach” at the Five O’Clock Club, a private outplacement and career-counseling club based in New York.

Their rarity makes prestige titles seem even more valuable to many job seekers — so valuable they may give up substantial salary or other benefits to obtain them. Big mistake, according to Lindsay Olson, partner and recruiter at Paradigm Staffing. Desperation — whether that means consenting to take any job that’s offered or accepting an inflated title with a deflated salary — makes a candidate less appealing.

It’s possible that a good title will give you better opportunities in the future — but only if the company has enough reputation that your position there can get you a commensurate job somewhere else. Titles and responsibilities vary significantly, and they are often inflated by companies that will “promote” valuable employees to higher-level titles without the salary or responsibility to match. As a result, the value of most titles has been deflated. In fact, increasing the seniority of your job title is a better tactic for a counteroffer than for an initial discussion.

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From ” You’re Better Than Your Job Search ” by Marc Cenedella and Matthew Rothenberg.