How to Negotiate the Best Raise Possible

Shelly Reese

Disclosures

July 27, 2016

In This Article

Understand the Situation

Know What's Reasonable

It's important to have realistic expectations. "You can go in and negotiate improvement or adjustments to improve your compensation package or to improve your practice, but it's not reasonable to expect that you can go in and negotiate a replacement for a $25,000 signing bonus or a $100,000 loan repayment," says Ken Hertz, a principal with the healthcare consulting agency MGMA. "Those were one-time incentives to bring you into the community and get you up and running. Now you need to look at ways to increase your bottom line that are much more incremental."

Understand the Other Person's Position

If you are negotiating from a position of pure self-interest, don't expect to get very far. If you can help the other party achieve his or her goals, you are more likely to achieve your own.

"Hospitals are always straining a bit to cover things," says Dr Andrew Knoll, an attorney in Syracuse, New York, who spent 13 years as an emergency physician and hospitalist and now practices healthcare law. "They have a lot of turnover and other personnel issues, and they often make requests because somebody is out sick or, 'We need you to go to X location because we are expanding.' I have had doctors take a hardcore position on that and demand more money."

Instead, he advises, take a long-term view of the situation. Use it as an opportunity to cultivate goodwill and build a relationship. "I think they should be saying, 'We are happy to help you. How can we make this work?"

"That's the type of person about whom the powers that be will say, "You know he helped us before, and he's looking for a little more. Can we do it?' That's the type of person whom the hospitals are more eager to keep and do things to keep them happy."

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