Negotiating job offers

So I’m retiring from the military. I have a pretty niche set of skills and connections. For those who follow, I’ve been in drones for over a decade (not the little ones, the big killer-death ones). I’m also ABD for a PhD in national security.

Im being recruited by several consulting companies mainly because I have good connections from GO to tactical levels. Booz Allen, Deloite, BCG, & some teir 2 firms are all recruiting heavily.

How do I balance the offers to get what I want? What should i be shooting for compensation wise? What I need is way less than what Id accept. I’ve had offers already for 185-ish (total comp) but the band for these companies are like 140k-230k. For an outsider that hasnt applied to a job that a recruiter or VP hasnt specifically asked me to, what should a fair ask be?


Do you have any friends or contacts in the industry that can give you insight?

1 Like

So 20ish years in?

1 Like

So, yes, but theyre all over the place. Its a 70k swing between the 2 i trust as to what I should ask.

Yes, been doing drones a long time but other stuff before that

Well, obviously go for the higher amount amd let them counter!

Here is what i would focus on since the money isnt the most important.

Be very firm about wanting 8 hours (or more) a pay period of annual leave.

175k total comp sounds low (pretty low) unless job is in very low cost of living area.

Id guess closer to 250-300k total comp with the resume you are hinting at.

Well, duh nerd!

I mean how do i not waste a hundred hours of my time playing companies against each other and get the best work life balance.

When a pay band is almost 100k for a position how do you set yourself up to get the most without playing the game between firms? Id rather keep a fair reputation between all the firms and be welcomed if it came to that.

Send them each a dick pic so they know you mean business.


Um, i dont think you play them against eachother.

You let them all know that you are considering multiple offers.

When they make an offer, you take a couple days and politely respond with the numbers you are looking for across the board…pay, leave, telework, hookers, blow,…

Aim 10-20% above what you think is high.

You are in a great position right now.
Government contracts are goingto be most stable jobs for a while…especially war fighting ones


Ita a LCOL area, I could move if needed , but my connections are in this area and its a huge research hub and will be for the next 30 years. For some referrence, i have connections to AFRL, MIT LL, NUAIR, MIT AI Accelerator, most high level institutions in NY/NJ area. I live 5 hours from any of these, but have other connections from DC to the INDOPACIFIC.

No clue for your job, but ask for a range.

I just got a promotion and only asked for a 25k bump. HR was salivating at that apparently, but luckily I got an awesome manager who got me 75K instead

Don’t short change yourself, ask what they’re willing to offer, never be first

1 Like

Then the higher numbers seem more reasonable to me.

@In_Limbo that was supoosed to be a cheeky and fun response, not a dick one. I feel it came off as the latter so my bad.

The range ive been able to find is almost 100k, thats why im so lost. Im so used to seeing rank and YOE and i can say to a dime what someone makes. Its a weird transition.

1 Like

Much appreciated! Its weird going from civil service to for profit and im trying to get as many opinions as possible. Much thanks!

1 Like

Another idea is to do a couple test interviews on jobs you DONT want.

I went from ManTech/Honeywell type companies to civil service.

Both have their strengths


1 Like

Lol! I just did that with Lockhead and a plastic manufacturer and i got offers. I did have a PMP, but i let it lapse. I think I could easily pass again without any issues.

Im kinda over service, i want to get paid but work on interesting and fun projects that i can help make a difference on