Negotiating Your Salary: Who Flinches First?

Think about it: You're going to have to discuss dollars eventually. So why go through the rigmarole of ironing your clothes, wearing uncomfortable shoes and grinning until your face hurts if you don't have to? Wouldn't you rather know during the first interview that the company pays half the salary you're looking for so you can focus your job hunting efforts elsewhere?

Believe me, unless you're some high-level executive rock star, the salary range the company has slated for the position isn't going to change from first interview to job offer. So do yourself a favor and save your pressed slacks and sales pitches for an organization that's actually in your price range.

This work is the opinion of the columnist and in no way reflects the opinion of ABC News.

Michelle Goodman is a freelance journalist, author and former cubicle dweller. Her books — "The Anti 9-to-5 Guide: Practical Career Advice for Women Who Think Outside the Cube" and "My So-Called Freelance Life: How to Survive and Thrive as a Creative Professional for Hire" (October 2008) — offer an irreverent take on the traditional career guide. More tips on career change, flex work and the freelance life can be found on her blog, Anti9to5Guide.com.

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