FBI Special Agent Salary
Special Agent trainees at the FBI Academy are paid as GS-10, step 1 ($43,441) plus the Quantico, VA locality adjustment (17.50%) during their time at the FBI Academy. This equates to $51,043 annually (or $1,963 per each two-week pay period).
Newly assigned Special Agents are remunerated as GS-10, step 1 ($43,441) plus locality pay and availability pay. Locality pay (which ranges from 12.5% to 28.7% of base salary depending upon office assignment) is additional compensation to account for variations in the labor market between distinct areas. Availability pay is a 25% increase in adjusted earnings (base salary + locality pay) for all Special Agents due to their requirement to average a 50-hour work week over the course of the twelve months. Therefore, with the locality and availability pay modifications, new Special Agents in their initial Field Offices make between $61,100 and $69,900, calculating in the region of the country to which they are designated.
A one time relocation bonus of $22,000 may be given to new FBI Special Agents designated to certain high-cost offices (New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, Washington D.C., Boston and Newark) The approximate $22,000 is issued to help counterbalance higher real estate and living costs. In order to be eligible for the relocation bonus, new Special Agents must be appointed to one of the selected high-cost offices and they must be relocating from a lower cost area to a different geographical area with a higher cost of living.
3) How To Be A Good Listener
We’ve all heard that listening skills are vital but nobody explains the right way to do it. What’s the secret?
Stop thinking about what you’re going to say next and focus on what they’re saying right now.
Be curious and ask to hear more about what interests you.
Listening isn’t shutting up. Listening is having nothing to say. There’s a difference there. If you just shut up, it means you’re still thinking about what you wanted to say. You’re just not saying it. The second that I think about my response, I’m half listening to what you’re saying because I’m really waiting for the opportunity to tell you my story.
What you do is this: as soon as you have that story or thought that you want to share, toss it. Consciously tell yourself, “I am not going to say it.”
All you should be doing is asking yourself, “What idea or thought that they mentioned do I find fascinating and want to explore?”
Research shows just asking people to tell you more makes you more likable and gets them to want to help you.
The basics of active listening are pretty straightforward:
- Listen to what they say. Don’t interrupt, disagree or “evaluate.”
- Nod your head, and make brief acknowledging comments like “yes” and “uh-huh.”
- Without being awkward, repeat back the gist of what they just said, from their frame of reference.
- Inquire. Ask questions that show you’ve been paying attention and that move the discussion forward.
(To learn the listening techniques of FBI hostage negotiators, click here.)
I know, I know — some people are just boring. You’re not that interested in what they’re saying. So what questions do you ask then, smart guy?
6) The Best Body Language For Building Rapport
Your words should be positive, free of ego and judgment — and your body language (“non-verbals”) needs to match.
Here are the things Robin recommends:
- “The number one thing is you’ve gotta smile. You absolutely have to smile. A smile is a great way to engender trust.”
- “Keep that chin angle down so it doesn’t appear like you’re looking down your nose at anyone. And if you can show a little bit of a head tilt, that’s always wonderful.”
- “You don’t want to give a full frontal, full body display. That could be very offensive to someone. Give a little bit of an angle.”
- “Keep your palms up as you’re talking, as opposed to palms down. That says, “I’m hearing what you’re saying. I’m open to what your ideas are.”
- “So I always want to make sure that I’m showing good, open, comfortable non-verbals. I just try to use high eyebrow elevations. Basically, anything going up and elevating is very open and comforting. Anything that is compressing: lip compression, eyebrow compression, where you’re squishing down, that’s conveying stress.”
Research backs him up. From Dale Carnegie to peer-reviewed studies, everyone says smiles matter. (In fact, to increase their power, smile slower.)
It makes us happier too. Neuroscience research shows smiling gives the brain as much pleasure as 2000 bars of chocolate — or $25,000.
Via Smile: The Astonishing Powers of a Simple Act:
Depending on whose smile you see, the researchers found that one smile can be as pleasurable and stimulating as up to 2,000 bars of chocolate! …it took up to 16,000 pounds sterling in cash to generate the same level of brain stimulation as one smile! This is equivalent to about $25,000 per smile…
(To learn how to decode body language and read people like a book, click here.)
So now you come off as the pleasant person you are, not as a scheming taker. But what do you do when the other person is a scheming taker?
Here are Robin’s tips:
- The single most important thing is non-judgmental validation. Seek someone else’s thoughts and opinions without judging them.
- Suspend your ego. Focus on them.
- Really listen, don’t just wait to talk. Ask them questions; don’t try to come up with stories to impress.
- Ask people about what’s been challenging them.
- Establishing a time constraint early in the conversation can put strangers at ease.
- Smile, chin down, blade your body, palms up, open and upward non-verbals.
- If you think someone is trying to manipulate you, clarify goals. Don’t be hostile or aggressive, but ask them to be straight about what they want.
(For more insights from Robin’s book, click here.)
Robin’s a fascinating guy and we ended up speaking for over an hour, so the above is just part of what he had to say.
I’ll be sending out an extended interview in my next weekly email update.
To learn more from Robin (including the one type of body language that causes you to screw everything up), join over 130,000 readers and get my free weekly update here.
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