Severance agreements often serve the company’s best interests and offer terminated employees as little as possible. Nonetheless, there will always be room for negotiation, and during the process, employees need to remember the do’s and don’ts to protect their rights and maximize their package terms.
Keep these at the back of your mind
Employees should have active participation when negotiating their severance agreement. This includes performing the following measures:
- Researching what severance agreements usually include before the negotiation
- Looking out for important provisions, such as payment terms and noncompete clauses
- Establishing the reason for an increased or additional payment and benefits using positive performance evaluations and other leverages
- Asking questions and seeking clarification about the provisions
- Remaining calm and professional
On the other hand, here are a few things employees should avoid when negotiating their severance pay:
- Entering a negotiation without the guidance of an attorney
- Accepting the agreement without further careful review
- Signing any document that one does not fully understand
- Focusing on the monetary aspect of the contract and brushing off nonmonetary benefits available for negotiation
- Settling for less than what they deserve, given the circumstances
There is no exclusive list of do’s and don’ts. However, these are some common conducts that bring positive results in severance negotiations.
There is no pain in trying
While these negotiation practices do not guarantee success, they at least increase the chances of getting a fair severance package. While many employers are tough to crack, others are still willing to provide what they can. Applying these practices in the negotiation process can do employees more good than harm.