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Headhunted - what value do you place on yourself - advice please!

(6 Posts)
WildnFree Mon 06-Jun-16 11:05:59

I'm in a really nice situation of being courted for a new job but id really like some advice on how to answer the question "What will it take to get you to work for us"

I'm in a secure job that has its ups and downs, in a company that is growing. Bits of it I love and bits I find really frustrating, mainly managerially, and also with the scope I have to influence decisions and direction etc. I also don't see where I can progress to internally and i'm left feeling that on balance work are getting more out of me than I do out of work.

The role i'm being offered is with a former boss who knows me and my work and is targeting me specifically to be the second employee in a new company venture - taking over an existing company and growing it. There are immense opportunities and Im very tempted. However I am struggling to figure out how I should be assessing my worth, especially as this is likely to be a board level position in a new venture, with up to 10 staff.

Im the main earner in our family and I don't want to loose out financially so am ok with setting salary and I want to keep my current pension at its current payment levels. I've no idea about what I should consider in terms of Bonus v's equity type discussions. Has anyone any similar experience, or can offer any kind of advice?

It would be very much appreciated.

Thanks :-)

OllyBJolly Mon 06-Jun-16 12:04:34


You're asking a very difficult question to get a more than general answer. There might be huge opportunities but they will come with equally large risks. It might be well worth investing in some expert advice.

You need to analyse the growth/failure potential of the business - do a proper audit of market, organisational capacity, financials etc.

Taking equity, especially if part of remuneration (i.e. not buying into company), can be far more rewarding than bonus if you are very sure the business is going to grow. If it fails, you get nothing. Bonuses will usually rely on year to year profitability and there are a lot of costs that come with a growth plan. However, if business does well you could get a nice sum each year.

Think carefully about taking on a director position. There are legal liabilities attached to a directorial appointment and you need to be confident that the company's finances are well managed and that H&S policy is up to date and adhered to.

Try to quantify what you're leaving behind: salary, benefits, employment protection, pension. I'd suggest you want to pitch your salary significantly above your current pay to compensate for the risks you are taking on (around 15%?). There is probably some flexibility around pension contributions via salary sacrifice.

The happiest, most successful and wealthiest people I know have taken these kinds of risks and done very well. If you think it's worth it go into it with your eyes fully open. If you do go for it, have a lawyer look over the service contract (director's employment contract) and the shareholder's agreement (if you take equity). Don't rely on goodwill of individuals, circumstances change.

WildnFree Tue 07-Jun-16 14:23:21

OllyBJolly Thanks - that's really useful - its given me some things to think about and some research to do.

It is a big step but I've a couple of months to think everything through and therefore time to go on the rollercoaster journey of Panic, Research, Understanding and more Research.

Your reply was very much appreciated. grin

EBearhug Tue 07-Jun-16 21:36:44

Don't forget the whole package - what are the pension provisions, how many days leave, opportunities to work from home and/or flexible hours, bonuses, private health, any other benefits.

Definitely pitch your salary high, and know what your absolute bottom line is (but don't tell them what it is.) Work out what your salary should at the market rate, and ask for more - you need a little wriggle room for negotiation.

Can't comment on the specifics of layering, so some of this may be irrelevant, but I think the general principles are sound - you just need to adapt the parameters.

HermioneWeasley Wed 08-Jun-16 20:41:08

Really hard to say without more specifics (size of role, how the business is owned/funded and sector), but at "board level" I'd expect on target bonus to be between 30 and 50% of salary, some kind of LTIP - probably equivalent to 80/100% salary granted per annum, pension - you might be hit by new annual allowance so might be better off negotiating a cash allowance, car anywhere between £8-12k cash allowance

daisychain01 Thu 09-Jun-16 17:04:17

I don't want to pour cold water on this new opportunity, and I agree that taking risks comes hand in hand with the type of role you mentioned but....

I don't want to loose out financially so am ok with setting salary and I want to keep my current pension at its current payment levels

I think you need some key facts from your former boss about the benefits beyond salary, key employment policies and protection as an employee. For example pensions come in all shapes and sizes. Ask yourself if you are walking away from a high quality scheme, and walking into a lesser pension benefit? That could equate to a significant amount of £££ over the years you are working there.

Definitely don't take your former boss's word for everything. Even if he is trustworthy you may end up making all kinds of assumptions, only to discover the job that is too good to be true, is just that!

Yay to getting an employment lawyer's advice.

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