I have recently helped several clients negotiate better contracts for themselves. Not just better financially, but more aligned with professional goals they have and the types of work they actually enjoy doing. Negotiation is a steep learning curve for many, but vital to understand.
The higher you climb up the professional ladder, the more your daily work life revolves around negotiations for both you and your team mates. Most people initially think of salary packages when considering negotiation skills. However, these skills can range from eliciting help from colleagues to getting support for your new ideas from more senior colleagues and board members.
Identify your main goal for the negotiation and where you would be prepared to compromise. Always go in asking for a bit more than you would like, more money for a project, more salary or holiday entitlement, more funding for staff training. If you have an idea of what your main goals are, the areas on which you compromise will seem like “gifts” or concessions to the other side, making you appear more reasonable and willing to negotiate.
Do not remain so attached to the idea of “winning” the argument. Putting your point of view forward without seeming to be attached to the results helps others lower their guard, relax and be able to see your perspective. Going in with a ‘cross to bear’ only elicits resistance and tension in others. If you stick to the benefits and logic of an argument, often others will embrace it and sometimes even think of it as their idea – a major benefit if you want implementation more than recognition.
Tomorrow, I will share our 6 Top Tips for Successful Negotiation.