I made a mistake and told a prospective employer a lower expected salary than my current salary because I was nervous. Actually I lost my current job, so I need a job immediately.

On the phone, HR asked me what my current salary and expected salary are. I gave a lower salary for my expected than for my current salary. Tomorrow is my interview. How can I explain why I want a lower salary for this employer than my previous one?

  • thank you. But if they ask me why your expectation is low or why you want low salary from your current salary? what can be my answer. – Jhon Mar 16 '14 at 14:00
  • Yes. I talked the conversation over phone. So can I find a tricks that I said 65(actually I said 55). Is that a good way. because 65 and 55, sounds of two words are nearly same. – Jhon Mar 16 '14 at 14:08
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    @Jhon, be careful playing 'tricks' like that. Some people have very good memories, some people verify what you say as they write it down, some people write emails confirming information, and some conversations are recorded. Getting labeled as a liar in the interview stage is a good way to risk not getting a job (unless it's one of those cases where you're being hired for your ability to tell lies as your job). – atk Mar 16 '14 at 15:34
  • Thanks, Can I say like "I said low salary because of some company call interview the person whose salary expectation is below ...(something), So I just said for getting the interview call" ? Is it the good answer? – Jhon Mar 16 '14 at 19:06
  • Actually I lost my job this month. And my current salary is very high. I could not tell full lie or I cant tell full truth. I got narvious on they asked me on phone call. I just make a big mistake. now please help me guys that how can I manage the situation. please...... – Jhon Mar 16 '14 at 19:53

Its always better to avoid telling lie as you would end up telling more lies to compensate the first lie.

If they ask why you are lowering your salary. Just say you don't have a job and the reasoning for lowering your current wage. Just say and face the truth.

I know this is not what you are looking right now, but believe me there is nothing greater than truth. You would be much relieved and would feel better for speaking and facing the truth.


In addition to Vinothbabu's answer, how about adding this:

"I know that I had a high salary at my previous job. Since I am currently without a job, I don't want to price myself out of the market. I think that this job at this company is worth a small reduction in salary to start out with, and I am convinced that you will end up finding me worth a higher one."

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    This answers raises the question how will anyone know what his current salary was before he lost his job unless he tells them? There are reasons you shouldn't reveal this information, when asked how much salary you want, the number should the lowest amount you would actually accept. – Donald Mar 17 '14 at 17:20
  • He said in the question that he answered when they asked him. – Jenny D Mar 17 '14 at 18:26

What you made previously "should" not be a concern to them. What you are worth is more important. Tell them what salary you are expecting, and if they ask why so high, be ready to justify that number.

Going forward, learn to get around that question by giving ranges or salary expectations instead of what you currently make. Really, nothing good (from the employees perspective) can come from divulging your previous salary.

I was laid off several years ago from a ".com" bankruptcy and took an intern job paying A LOT lower because it was close to a university and would allow me to finish my degree very quickly.

Once I finished my degree, I had more knowledge/experience than most new Computer Science grads, so I got a lot of interviews. I made the mistake of telling a company what I was making as an intern and they questioned why I was asking for such a large increase? I explained because of my skills and experience, but they insisted that was only worth a few dollars more.

So, I knew this job was not for me. A few weeks later, I got an offer from another company that realized my value, and paid me more than what I was asking the first company.

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    I agree with Joe. This seems to be besides what's actually asked – CMW Mar 17 '14 at 17:10
  • Well, he's out of work and nervous about getting a job. I don't think there's much he can do about THIS job. Just be prepared for the next one and don't make the same mistake. If someone told me one price, then came back with another after they knew I wanted them, I'd tell them to walk. – L_7337 Mar 17 '14 at 17:52

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