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Michael Tharrington for The DEV Team

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Discussion and Comment of the Week - v12

This weekly roundup highlights what we believe to be the most thoughtful and/or interesting discussion of the week. We're also be highlighting one particularly cool comment in each installment. 🙌

The DEV Community is particularly special because of the kind and thoughtful discussions happening between community members. As such, we want to encourage folks to participate in discussions and reward those who are initiating or taking part in conversations across the community. After all, a community is made possible by the people interacting inside it.

Discussion of the Week

Big ups to @nickytonline for dropping the short'n'sweet discussion topic "July 21st, 2022: What did you learn this week?"

Nick has been diligently posting in this discussion series for weeks on end (we're on the 29th edition) and it's always such a fun conversation starter. But, beyond it just being a really cool topic of conversation that gives community members a platform to celebrate wins and cheer each other on, Nick is also just demonstrating tactics that lend themselves well to building an online following.

For one, Nick is sharing what I've referred to in the past as a ritual post in that this post happens at the same time every week and basically takes on the same format (kidna like the post you're reading right now 😉), making it so that followers understand it as a rhythm they can count on and participate in again and again — people often like familiarity. But also, tactically, it makes easier on the author to post each week because it's essentially the same set up every time.

Another thing, Nick responds to each community member's comment with a fun GIF. This a really nice gesture and adds a lotta his lovable personality to the thread. And from speaking with Nick, I know he set up a bunch of comment templates via /settings/extensions to make it easier to drop these reactions on the fly. Smart move!

If you're trying to build a big following here, ya might wanna take these tactics and apply them to your own game!

Comment of the Week

This week, I'd like to highlight @seankilleen's awesomely thoughtful response to @sloan's prompt on behalf of an anonymous community member: "Should I share my current salary with recruiters?"

Sharing salary information with a potential employer or recruiter can typically only hurt your interests; rarely does it help you.

What you are looking to figure out is the market rate for what this organization is willing to pay you. By sharing your salary information, you are immediately putting a cap on your expectations and their expectations and messing with that concept. You may have limited yourself without ever knowing it, and any increase you negotiate will be against that prior number. In short -- when you provide a number, companies can benchmark their offer against it; when you don't, they have to gauge a salary against the competitive rates in the market without any cap from you. That can be the difference between 15% and 40% or more.

I've practiced two answers pretty thoroughly over the years -- you can redirect the conversation in polite but firm ways without losing even a little bit of positivity. If you stay upbeat and confident, they're forced to move on.

  • When someone asks me for my salary history: "Oh, no worries, I don't typically talk about salary at this point. I want to see if an organization is the right fit for me first."
    • If someone is insistent: "Since this is a new position, I don't consider my salary history relevant, as it's about the impact I'll be bringing for the company and what value the company places on that impact."
    • If they say they can't continue without placing a number in a system, I'll helpfully offer: "Oh, just try putting in $1; that should get you past the system but will be clear that we still need to have a discussion about it."
    • If for some reason they're still adamant at this point, then IMO they are trying to exploit you, and you should move on.
  • When someone asks me what I'm looking to make: "I see that more as a process of discovery. Money aside, I know I have a potential to make a big impact here. Assuming you feel the same way at the end of this process (and I hope you will!), it will be important for me to know what value the company places on that impact, because it helps me better understand whether I'll be a fit."

I practiced a few variations of that (out loud!) until it felt comfortable to say. I've used it many times, and I've gotten several big salary jumps partly due to it.

One drawback: This means you will get later into conversations before you get to the salary talk. This is good for you -- they already like you if you got that far! -- but it can lead to some big mismatches in expectations. However, this sets you up to negotiate for other benefits if you're far apart on salary. It also builds your network even if it doesn't work out, because the employer will have wanted to hire you. Lastly, it will help you better target organizations and roles where your compensation goals might be met.

Happy searching!

This thorough comment is chock-full of excellent advice around salary negotiation and why it's best to hold your cards close. I found it particularly helpful how Sean pointed out that you don't need to sacrifice positivity and cheeriness when turning down organizations who directly ask you what your current salary is. The scenarios that we walked through in the comment feel very true to real life and the planned responses are truly golden. 🙌 It's clear to me that Sean has thought this one over and come up with a good set of practices for navigating what can be (but doesn't have to be) a difficult discussion. Thanks for sharing your wisdom, Sean, hope it makes some of us richer, haha!

What are your picks?

There's loads of great discussions and comments floating about in this community. These are just a few we chose to highlight. 🙂

I urge you all to share your favorite comment and/or discussion of the past week below in the comments. And if you're up for it, give the author an @mention — it'll probably make 'em feel good. 💚

Top comments (4)

seankilleen profile image
Sean Killeen

Thanks a ton for this highlight, @michaeltharrington! I enjoy helping people where I can and I've some experience doing this in the past. Makes my day to know that you found it that valuable. And yes, I hope it enriches both the discussion and all who utilize it. :)

michaeltharrington profile image
Michael Tharrington

Oh you bet! And again, just really appreciate ya dropping that response. I think it's super helpful advice for anyone job searching out there. 🙌

yourmdsarfaraj profile image
MD Sarfaraj

Thanks for sharing, nice one

michaeltharrington profile image
Michael Tharrington

Woot! Glad ya dig it and thanks. 😀