Wednesday, March 29, 2017

9 things to avoid when negotiating a salary

I came across this article the other day. It gives some helpful tips about negotiating your salary. 

You’re 96% sure that you’re ready to schedule a meeting with your boss to ask for a raise. Or perhaps you’re nearing the end of the job interview process and an offer is in sight. However, if you’re like me, you have definitely put your foot in your mouth a time or two saying the wrong thing at the absolute worst moment. Doh!

Don’t mess up. Don’t mess up. No matter how many times you rehearse what to say, there’s always that risk of fumbling right at the five-yard line. Instead of panicking, get prepared.

To coach us along in the salary negotiation process, we turned to Josh Doody, author of Fearless Salary Negotiation. “A salary negotiation is a collaboration, and a key ingredient of a successful collaboration is good communication,” says Doody. “It’s important to be very clear with what you communicate to avoid ambiguity, which could complicate things and slow the negotiation process.”

Instead of Doody simply sharing the things you should say, he’s here to warn you about the potential negotiation landmines to avoid when angling for the salary you deserve. Here are nine things to never say in a salary negotiation:


The most common question recruiters will ask a candidate is something like, “So where are you right now in terms of salary, and what are you looking for if you make this move?” Don’t fall for it.

Instead of asking for “more” salary or “more” vacation, this is your time to get specific.
“I call this the ‘dreaded salary question,’ and it’s tricky because it usually comes up early in the interview process, and most candidates don’t think of it as part of a salary negotiation even though it is,” says Doody.

“Answering this question by disclosing numbers can make it very difficult to negotiate effectively later on because it can box the candidate in. Once they disclose current or desired salary, the offers they get are very likely to be tied to those numbers. That can be very expensive if the company might have offered them a much higher salary than they disclosed.”


Don’t disclose your current or desired salary! “Recovering from this mistake can be tricky and each situation is unique. But one way to untether from those original numbers is to review the benefits package for deficiencies,” says Doody. “If the health insurance offering, paid vacation, target bonus, or other aspects of the benefits package are underwhelming, the candidate can use those as reasons to ask for a higher salary to compensate.”

Instead, try something like:

I’m not comfortable sharing my current salary. I would prefer to focus on the value I can add to this company rather than what I’m paid at my current job. I don’t have a specific number in mind for a desired salary, and you know better than I do what value my skillset and experience could bring to your company. I want this move to be a big step forward for me in terms of both responsibility and compensation.

3. “SORRY”

According to Doody, “negotiating is uncomfortable, and our natural tendency is to try to smooth the edges on a difficult conversation. Saying sorry could signal to the recruiter or hiring manager that you might be willing to back down, and that could be expensive. Don’t apologize for negotiating.”

4. “NO”

“You want to continuously improve your situation throughout the negotiation and you do that by avoiding negative language and focusing on positive language. Instead of “No, that doesn’t work for me” (two negative words), you can say, “I would be more comfortable with . . .” (a more positive expression).

“Saying sorry could signal to the recruiter or hiring manager that you might be willing to back down . . . Don’t apologize for negotiating.”

Negative words slow things down and may put up walls that make collaboration difficult. Using only positive words is difficult at first, but you’ll get better with practice.”

5. “YES”

While this may sound like the exact word to use when speaking to an HR recruiter, Doody insists it should be used with caution. “You’ll often get a job offer that seems really appealing, and it might be far more than you expected. Your instinct in that case might be to just accept the offer because it’s so good.”

But is it too good?

“It’s possible you underestimated your value in this situation. Instead of “Yes,” formulate a counteroffer to see how much you can improve it. The negotiation should end with the company saying “Yes” to you. Once they say “Yes” to you, or you run out of things to ask for, then you are finished negotiating.”

6. “LATER”

As in, “I can deal with that after I start.” Procrastinators, this one’s for you. “Sometimes it’s easier to avoid uncomfortable parts of a negotiation by deferring those parts of the conversation until after you’re hired. That can be a very expensive mistake because you won’t have the same latitude to negotiate and improve your position once you’re in the door. Push through the discomfort and get the best possible result now.”

7. “TRY”

In expressions like, “Can we try . . .?” “’try’ is a passive word that leaves a lot of wiggle room, and you don’t want that,” insists Doody. “It’s easy for someone to say—honestly or not—”We’ll try…” and reply with, “We tried and it just didn’t work out.” Don’t ask them to “try” to do something. Instead, use more positive language like “I would be more comfortable with…”.”

8. “MORE”

While this word seems counter intuitive because you are negotiating to get more, it’s a word that is too general for a successful negotiation. Instead of asking for “more” salary or “more” vacation, this is your time to get specific.

“Don’t leave things to the imagination once you’re negotiating. Instead of “Could you budge on the salary?” say, ‘I would be more comfortable with a base salary of $105,000.’”

9. “WANT”

Lastly, the word “want” can tank negotiations. Using it can undercut the entire premise of your argument that you deserve to be paid more and you deserve a more competitive salary. Go into a negotiation with facts and figures, making a compelling case. Start with printing out your results using a tool like Glassdoor’s personal salary estimator, Know Your Worth. See what you base salary should be and see what the industry norms are.

“You could talk about what you want, which just isn’t all that important. Or you could talk about what the company wants, which is not as potent as talking about what the company needs, which are the most important thing,” adds Doody. “Focus on the company’s needs and how you can help meet those needs so they can easily see your value and work to compensate you for it.”

Get your money. It's not about what you are's about what you can negotiate. 

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

off tha dome

random thoughts...

spring is is the pollen

i really feel for people with bad allergies

do you think President Obama misses us? we damn sure miss him...

the month of April is almost here. how are those new years resolutions going

vocally...for doesn't get much better than Jill Scott & Erykah Badu

tell me does SEVERAL young, black women disappear from our nation's capital and there's NO NEWS COVERAGE about it?

if i became a muli-millionaire friends would STILL clown me about the time that i threw up in the strip club at Roody's bachelor party. gotta love those kinda friends

i finally saw Get Out. incredible movie. a must see! i'll definitely see it again

why do people ask people who are married but don't have any kids yet..."so, when are y'all gonna have kids?"

sometimes you have to ask yourself..."do you really want to win...or do you want to look good while loosing?"

did you hear about the domestic terrorist white man who drove to nyc so "he could kill black men?" he killed one before being arrested. did you hear about it? i didn't hear one news outlet call him a terrorist. i wonder why???

i can ice skate backwards but i can't roller skate backwards. not sure why

i'm almost certain that the good folks at Krispy Kreme put crack in these things

did the tweeter in chief mention the terrorist? if he did...i missed it

Skyler : "Daddy, did you have an iPhone when you were a little boy?" i don't know if i stopped laughing to answer her

i was in the restroom at work the other day. some dude was on his cellphone while on the toilet, flushed it, and walked out. didn't even think to wash his hands...

fellas...most women who SOUND good over the phone don't look good. can i get a witness?

ladies...why do you go to the restroom in numbers with your friends?

is it restroom or bathroom? you're not resting in a public place...and you're definitely not taking a bath

i enjoyed having the opportunity to speak at my grandmother's funeral last month. while i will miss her, i am thankful for having her here for 95 years. and it was great seeing my family. some of them i haven't seen in years

keep it real...shEther was one of the best diss records that you've heard in a minute

can somebody get steve harvey outta here

i'm not sure who June's Diary is...or who authorized them to remake Jodeci's "Stay"...but it's pretty dope

my boy Tee Reese can roller skate. maybe he can show me how to do it backwards

i'm amazed at how people are surprised when i tell them that i don't eat chocolate or watermelons

i know i've said this every year but THIS will be the year that i take piano lessons

ya manz (aka 45) has been playing golf every weekend in florida. he's not doing much in washington...might as well chill on the weekends

i don't know how y'all subject your eyes and ears to reality tv. i can't

do you have a piano that i can borrow?

you can find me on deck listening to music and grillin on most weekends. you can come through and kick it. but don't come empty handed who you are. she'll like you. trust me

ladies...if a man has no direction in life...leave him alone. he's lost. you don't want to be lost with him

don't talk...just listen

i didn't watch the Oscars but when i heard about what happened...i can't lie...i laughed loudly

if there's such a thing as socially anti-social...that's me

lavar ball isn't helping his sons

turkey bacon is good for you but it don't taste as good as the real bacon

gimme the real bacon

never been a fan of cats

thanks for reading this blog. i appreciate it. i really do. even those who read but don't comment. i still appreciate it

this blog is almost 10 yrs old. damn. where did the time go?

and thanks for listening to the 12kyle podcast

never push your creativity.

i really feel like the Falcons let America down

i ain't gonna talk about that game. i don't wanna start cussin

there's always somebody with 15 items in the "10 Items or less" aisle in the grocery store

LeBron recently said he missed 82 days of school in the 4th grade. not sure how that's humanly possible. i'm glad he passed...but i'm not sure what he learned that year

if you're the smartest person in the room...then you're probably in the wrong room get shoot your way out of the friend zone

ladies...if he's in the friend zone, let him know that he's there. don't encourage him to be a fool

i'm a foooooooool for youuuuuuuuuu

along with learning the piano and learning how to roller skate backwards...i need to become fluent in Spanish.

is there a more boring chore than folding clothes??

Monday, March 27, 2017

maybe you do...maybe you don't

I was listening to one of my favorite podcasts the other day. The podcast was from GFT Radio (shoutout to Sunny & Clint) and it was called "Do people really know you?"

The title made me stop and ask myself..."Do people REALLY know me?"

On the podcast, they talked about whether people really know you based on what people may post on their social media accounts. That thought...made me ask myself the question again..."Do people REALLY know me?"

Do you know me? Maybe you do. Maybe you don't.

Here's what I do know...I'm sure that many of you know me. Those of you who read this blog and have bonded with me through social media. You know more than what's on the surface (I'm married...we have 4 kids...we live in Atlanta...I'm a proud alum of South Carolina State University...I love football...I love hip hop...etc). That's the surface stuff. That's the stuff that most people know.

Do you know more than that based on what I say on my social media accounts? Maybe. I've often said that Kyle and 12kyle...are the same person. I've always said I would never try to be somebody that I'm not. I'm me. I'm comfortable with who I am and who I will be. I've been this way since I was about 7. I wouldn't want to be anybody else. I'm great at being Kyle. I'm great at being that guy. I'd probably suck at being anybody else. What you see on social media is the same as what you'd see off line.

Honestly, if you read this blog consistently, you probably have a better insight as to who I am than what you may see on Facebook or Twitter. I've managed to "put my lifetime in between these paper's lines." Was it by design? just happened. I've had this blog for nearly 10 years. If you've been around for awhile, you probably have an understanding as to who I am. I've been through a lot and I've shared it here. I'm probably more likely to share a deeper thought or feeling here before I do on social media. Funny...many of you have learned more about me here than members of my family who don't even know that this blog exists. It's not that I didn't tell them...they have just never read it. And that's cool with me.

My inner circle knows me. They know me well. As they should. That's what matters to me. The inner circle is always tight and their opinions of me and what I do matter. It's always been that way. I wouldn't have it any other way. But everybody can't be in the circle. And I'm cool with that. Some of you who read this blog are in a rare place with me as for knowing about me...and some have never met me. That's a different circle but I'm appreciative of it.

So...that gets me back to the original question...

Do people REALLY know me?

Most don't.

Well...maybe a select few do.

And I'm cool with that.

But do people really know me?

Maybe they do...maybe they don't.
And I'm cool with that as well.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

PODCAST: Life After Death...20 Years Later

1997 was a pivotal year for hip hop. On March 9th of that year, hip hop suffered a huge loss with the murder of The Notorious BIG. Two weeks later, Biggie's second album, Life After Death, was released posthumously on March 25th. On this episode of the 12kyle Podcast, we will revisit the double album from Biggie. We will break down the album, Biggie's legacy, and the significance of Biggie's death.

All of that and more!

Listen and let us know what you think.

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Saturday, March 18, 2017

PODCAST: what makes a classic hip hop album

What makes a classic hip hop album? It depends on who you ask. But there are some fundamental truths that you must first acknowledge before you start the discussion. On this podcast, we'll examine these truths. We'll also break down the differences between a modern day hip hop classic album and an all time hip hop classic album. How soon can you determine if an album is a classic?

We'll also explore if some of your favorite albums like My Twisted Dark Fantasy (Kanye West) and To Pimp A Butterfly (Kendrick Lamar) are classic hip hop albums. We will cover how there are some songs on classic hip hop albums that you MAY NOT LIKE. Does the number of guest features and "all star" producers determine whether an album should be deemed a hip hop classic?

All of that and more...

Listen and let us know what you think.

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Tuesday, March 7, 2017

5 drinks for better sleep...

I'm not big on drinking anything but water before going to bed but this is some useful information...

Did you know that lack of sleep may have a negative impact on your weight? Studies have found that people who get enough sleep (7 to 9 hours are recommended) are, in fact, slimmer. Regular exercise and a balanced diet are key for better quality sleep. And, believe it or not, choosing the right beverage plays an important role, too. The following five bedtime beverages help you fall asleep easily, get quality shuteye, and even help keep your metabolism fired up during the night.

1. Milk

Milk is the perfect bedtime drink, no matter if you enjoy it hot or cold! It is rich in tryptophan and calcium (both of which will positively affect your sleep). Apart from that, milk provides you with high levels of protein; casein to be exact. Your body absorbs this milk protein slowly (as opposed to whey protein) which prevents muscle loss during the night. The more muscle mass you have, the more calories your body burns when resting.

2. Ginger tea with lemon

Ginger and lemon will activate your metabolism; so why not combine them? Freshly brewed ginger tea with lemon not only improves your metabolism, but works wonders for your immune system! Simply add a few slices of ginger and freshly squeezed lemon juice to a liter of hot water. Then, add your tea and let it brew for about 15 minutes. Too bitter? You can sweeten your bedtime drink with some honey.

3. Grape juice

Yes, you read it correctly: if you would like to shed a few pounds, grape juice is indeed a suitable ‘good night drink’. Obviously, it’s all about the right quantity, as fruit juice contains a lot of sugar. A small glass of pure grape juice (about 150 ml/ 8 oz) before going to bed will stimulate the fat burning process. A study conducted by the International Journal of Obesity found that resveratrol, an antioxidant in grapes, is responsible for that. It is said to convert white fat into metabolically active brown fat.

4. Camomile tea

Do you often struggle to fall asleep? Time to take action – but please choose natural means over pills. If you don’t get enough sleep your body becomes more prone to illness and you also run an increased risk of becoming overweight. This is where camomile tea comes into play: it helps you relax and fall asleep. This herbal tea increases glycine levels in your blood. Glycine is a neurotransmitter that acts as a muscle relaxant and therefore ensures that you get a deep and restful slumber.

5. Kefir

Kefir is made from fermented milk and contains carbon dioxide. With its high levels of probiotics (micro-organisms which are added to the beverage), this creamy drink has a positive effect on your intestinal health and activates your metabolism. Additionally, kefir is rich in protein. A glass of this dairy drink as a late night snack keeps you full and provides your muscles with protein during the night. Then, you’re sure to be set for a great athletic performance the next day.

Bottom line: If you would like to shed a few pounds, there is no way around regular exercise and a balanced diet. Enjoy these drinks in the evening, as an addition, if you want to boost your weight loss.

Monday, March 6, 2017

15 questions to ask at the end of every interview...

I came across this article on the WSJ the other day. Hopefully, this can help you.

It's important to remember that every interview is a two-way street.

You should be assessing the employer just as much as they're assessing you because you both need to walk away convinced that the job would be a great fit.

So when the tables are turned and the interviewer asks, "Do you have any questions for me?" take advantage of this opportunity. It's the best way to determine if you'd be happy working for this employer, and whether your goals are aligned with theirs.

"The very process of asking questions completely changes the dynamic of the interview and the hiring manager's perception of you," says Teri Hockett, chief executive of What's For Work?, a career site for women. "Asking questions also gives you the opportunity to discover details that you might not have otherwise unveiled."

Amy Hoover, president of TalentZoo, says there's another reason you should always prepare questions. "It's expected — and if you don't ask at least two questions, you will appear disinterested, or worse, less intelligent and engaged than a prospective employer would like." You should have at least four questions prepared, though, in case your original two are answered through the course of the interview.

But, Hoover says, don't just ask questions for the sake of it. To actually benefit from them, you'll need to think carefully about what you want to ask.

"Your questions can, in fact, make or break an interview," she explains. "If they're not thoughtful, or if you ask something that has already been addressed, this can hurt you way more than it can help. Asking smart, engaging questions is imperative."

Luckily, there are plenty of smart ones to pick from.

Here are 15 questions you should always ask in a job interview — if they weren't already answered — to help you get a better sense of the role and the company, and to leave the interview with a positive, lasting impression:

1. Who do you think would be the ideal candidate for this position, and how do I compare?

Hoover recommends this question because it's a quick way to figure out whether your skills align with what the company is currently looking for. If they don't match up, then you know to walk away instead of wasting time pursuing the wrong position for yourself, she says.

2. Who would I be reporting to? Are those three people on the same team or on different teams? What's the pecking order?

It's important to ask about the pecking order of a company in case you have several bosses.If you're going to be working for several people, you need to know "the lay of the internal land," she says, or if you're going to be over several people, then you probably want to get to know them before accepting the position.

3. How has this position evolved?

Basically, this question just lets you know whether this job is a dead end or a stepping-stone.

4. How would you describe the company's culture?

Hoover says this question gives you a broad view on the corporate philosophy of a company and on whether it prioritizes employee happiness.

5. Who do you consider your major competitors? How are you better?

This question is not for the faint of heart, but it shows that you are already thinking about how you can help the company rise to meet some of its bigger goals, says Peter Harrison, CEO of Snagajob.

6. Beyond the hard skills required to successfully perform this job, what soft skills would serve the company and position best?

Knowing what skills the company thinks are important will give you more insight into its culture and its management values, Hoover says, so you can evaluate whether you would fit in.

7. Do you have any hesitations about my qualifications?

While this question puts you in a vulnerable position, it shows that you are confident enough to openly bring up and discuss your weaknesses with your potential employer.

8. What do you like most about working for this company?

Hoover says this question is important because it lets you "create a sense of camaraderie" with the interviewer because "interviewers — like anyone — usually like to talk about themselves and especially things they know well." Plus, this question gives you a chance to get an insider's view on the best parts about working for this particular company, she says.

9. Can you give me example of how I would collaborate with my manager?

Knowing how managers use their employees is important so you can decide whether they are the type of boss that will let you use your strengths to help the company succeed.

10. Can you tell me what steps need to be completed before your company can generate an offer?

"Any opportunity to learn the timeline for a hire is crucial information for you," Hoover advises.

Asking about an "offer" rather than a "decision" will give you a better sense of the timeline because "decision" is a broad term, while an "offer" refers to the point when they're ready to hand over the contract.

11. How would you score the company on living up to its core values? What’s the one thing you’re working to improve on?

Harrison says this is a respectful way to ask about shortcomings within the company — which you should definitely be aware of before joining a company. As a bonus, he says it shows that you are being proactive in wanting to understand more about the internal workings of the company before joining it.

12. What are the challenges of this position?

If the interviewer says, "There aren't any," you should proceed with caution.

13. What have past employees done to succeed in this position?

The main point of this question is to get your interviewer to reveal how the company measures success.

14. If you were to hire me, what might I expect in a typical day?

Obviously this shows your eagerness about the position, Harrison says, but it also gives you a better idea about what the job will be like on a daily basis so you can decide whether you really want to pursue it. "A frank conversation about position expectations and responsibilities will ensure not only that this is a job you want, but also one that you have the skills to be successful in," he advises.

15. What type of employee tends to succeed here? What qualities are the most important for doing well and advancing at the firm?

This question shows the interviewer that you care about your future at the company, and it will also help you decide if you're a good fit for the position, Oliver writes. "Once the interviewer tells you what she's looking for in a candidate, picture that person in your mind's eye," she says. "She or he should look a lot like you."

Saturday, March 4, 2017

PODCAST: Criminal Minded...30 Years Later

On March 3, 1987, Boogie Down Productions released it's first album, Criminal Minded. The album, fueled by the diss records...South Bronx and The Bridge is Over, his a hip hop classic. Listen to the latest episode of the 12Kyle Podcast as we discuss the significance of the album, how the album came about, the Bridge Wars and why it is a hip hop classic. We pay homage to Criminal Minded...30 Years Later

Listen and let us know what you think.

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