Salary Spin

Brandon Stout bms at
Fri Aug 17 23:39:36 MDT 2007

Andrew Jorgensen wrote:
> Recent discussions have me thinking about something HR and management
> have both told me on occasion.  They say that it's good to have a
> salary that's lower in the range for your position because it means
> they can give you bigger raises - there's more room to grow.  The
> corollary is that it's bad to have a salary near the top of the range.
> I would have discounted the idea entirely except that one of my
> college professors told me something similar when I asked for advice
> about which job to take when I graduated.
> Assuming one is qualified for one's position, how can a potential
> raise be a better thing than being paid that much in the first place?
> I get that it feels good to get a big raise, but mathematically it
> doesn't make sense.  Is there some subtle truth here I'm not seeing?

This has been an interesting thread to read.  I'll throw another bone:

Statistically, people get a bigger raise when leaving their current 
company for a similar or next-level position elsewhere than they would 
have had staying with the same company.  Note that I'm just stating a 
correlation, and not a cause/effect relationship.  Personally, I'd like 
to have one job for a long time - one where my primary job function is 
no longer taking calls...  A couple hypotheses come to mind:

 1. People leave their company for another one precisely because they 
received a better offer
 2. Companies need a fresh perspective, and frequently hire from 
competitors when possible to bring this in

I personally lean toward #1.

Brandon Stout

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