“The best move you can make in negotiation is to think of an incentive the other person hasn’t even thought of – and then meet it.”
Eli Broad (Entrepreneur, SunAmerica)
“The most difficult thing in almost any negotiation is making sure that you strip it of the emotion and deal with the facts.”
Howard Baker (Senator)
“Everything is negotiable. Whether or not the negotiation is easy is another thing.”
Carrie Fisher (Actress, Star Wars)
Genghis Khan was the most feared warlord of the 10th and 11th centuries.
His ruthlessness was legendary. However, he had his weaknesses.
Genghis Khan’s first attempt at negotiation was a disaster.
He wanted to trade with the Khwarezmian Empire and sent emissaries to a Khwarezmian trading outpost.
The governor of the outpost robbed Khan’s emissaries.
When Khan sent an ambassador to protest his emissaries’ treatment, the Khwarezmian Shah had the ambassador killed.
A year later, Genghis Khan utterly destroyed the Khwarezmian Empire.
He razed cities to the ground.
The Khwarezmian Shah died penniless on a small island.
By the end of the campaign, Genghis Khan had learned one of the secrets of successful negotiations.
(Do you know what the secret was?)
The few Khwarezmians who survived had also learned a lesson about negotiating.
(Do you know what the lesson was? If not, keep reading…)
Why You Need To Negotiate To Get Ahead In Life
Three separate studies published in the Harvard Business Review looked at income inequality and showed that the number one reason high-earners get paid more than low-earners is simply because they ask for more.
They did not accept the first offer as easily, they asked for more overall, and they sought opportunities to negotiate more often.
In other words, they knew their value and didn’t settle.
They had the confidence to ask for what they wanted.
This is a common trait of all successful people.
How many times have you not asked for what you wanted because you thought it would be “impolite” or “rude”?
Likely, too many times.
Not asking for what you want feels lousy and erodes self-esteem.
It also creates a bad habit of not asking and not getting.
Look–If you want more than the mediocre little life you’ve built for yourself, you’re going to have to get the guts to ask for more.
But know that no one is just going to hand out what you want without getting something in return.
This is where negotiation comes in.
Learning to negotiate effectively is so essential, that business schools around the world offer it as a class.
And yet, an article published in Psychology Today states the reason most people lose during negotiations is because they’re prepared for failure before they even begin.
They doubt themselves.
They expect to lose.
You create a self-fulfilling prophecy of failure when you go into negotiations with a mindset of doubt and insecurity.
With this less-than mindset, you will lose every time.
How To Successfully Negotiate To Get Ahead
Every unsuccessful person in life has one thing in common.
Instead, they assume people will just give them what they want.
They feel passively entitled to it and act victimized when they don’t get it.
It’s always someone else’s fault and life is unfair.
The truth is, they were too unconfident to ask for what they wanted and too lazy to fight for it.
Every successful leader in history has been a master negotiator.
Every. Single. One.
They negotiate to win.
They have learned to fight for what they want.
And so should you.
If you feel uncomfortable trying to win, stay out of the game and bathe in mediocrity.
Plenty of people are willing to walk over you to get to the top.
They’ll be happy to grind your face into the dirt with their boots while they succeed.
If you don’t want to be a doormat, you will have to learn how to win at negotiating.
You will have to actively seek out opportunities, rather than shrink away from them, and start practicing.
In other words…
You’ll have to ask for what you want and then take it.
Here are 5 types of negotiation tactics to successfully get what you want in life…
1. Know what you want and don’t settle for anything less.
Most people negotiate with the intention of making the other side happy.
As if making them happy or selling them on what they want is the way to get what you want.
This is ridiculous.
Negotiation isn’t supposed to be a one-sided victory.
When you negotiate, know what you want and don’t settle for anything less.
This is the principle behind all negotiation tactics.
If you aren’t there to get what you want, don’t negotiate at all.
Instead, just give in.
Once the other side realizes you’re trying to make them happy and not serious about what you want, they’ll force you to give in anyway.
At this point, it’ll be an easy win for them and another hit to your self-confidence.
When you negotiate for anything, think about what you want before the negotiations start.
Do you want a $4,000 raise?
Do you want a bigger byline?
Do you want your house remodeling done by the 15th?
Be clear and firm.
Once you know what you want, keep your mindset focused on how important it is to you to make sure that you get it.
Don’t be firm for 10 minutes and then cave like a toddler.
Don’t bluff that you’re tough and then have a crisis of conscience just because you’re scared.
Know what you want and stick to it.
2. Know your options and how to leverage them.
When you negotiate, you have to do so from a position of power.
If you don’t, the other side will just take everything they want from you.
In negotiations, what you want doesn’t matter to the other side.
They are only in it for themselves.
Don’t forget this.
This can be hard to remember when the other side appears to have more power.
Remember… the fact that the other side is even willing to negotiate is proof of your power.
Nobody negotiates if they think they can just take what they want, so get strategic about where you do have power.
Then figure out how to leverage it.
Sometimes, your position of power is obvious.
You can perform a service for the other side.
There’s obvious benefit to them and you are positioned as the best person for the job.
Other times, your position of power is more subtle.
Maybe the other side is negotiating with you because they fear the repercussions if they are uncompromising.
Maybe they just want the exchange to go smoothly.
Maybe they’re desperate, rushed, or disorganized.
Whatever the set-up, your position of power comes from how difficult you want to make the transaction and how much you can help—or hurt—the other side’s reputation based on how badly you want what you want.
Once you know what your options are, don’t be afraid to use them.
Don’t be afraid to be blunt about your options… and theirs.
If you hold back out of lack of confidence or are afraid of coming across as impolite, you will exude weakness and they will take what they want and offer nothing more because you came in without power.
3. Know what you can do for the other side.
Once you know where your power lies, you can lead heavily with what value you offer to the other side.
Be clear and specific about this.
Always offer your value in positive terms.
People hate to be threatened.
If you threaten the other side, they might call your bluff and you’ll have no choice but to follow through.
Worse yet, they might end the negotiation out of spite.
Instead, talk about what you can do for them.
Play up the benefits.
Talk about how smoothly the negotiations can go.
Make it look easy.
Talk about how good they’ll look once other people hear about the negotiations.
But always hold something back.
Never let the other side know everything you can do for them.
Once they know everything you can do for them, they have power over you.
They’ll offer you the least of what you want in return for everything they know you can give them.
They will leverage this against you.
Make the other side put all their cards on the table first.
Then you know you have the best chance at a deal in your favor.
4. Know how the other side thinks.
What’s just as important as knowing your desires and strengths in the negotiation?
Knowing how the other side thinks.
What kind of power does the other side have?
Knowing how the other side thinks gives you more power so you can be strategic.
It helps you to figure out what they’ll ask from you in advance so you’re prepared to counter.
It helps you to figure out what they’re willing to give in exchange.
This sounds difficult, but it’s really not.
Look at the situation from their perspective and ask yourself one question:
What else do they want to get out of this negotiation?
For example, if someone is trying to sell you their car, find out more about them and their motivation for selling.
Approach the negotiations from the other side’s perspective to see what they value other than just getting money for the car.
Are they a dealer trying to fill their quota for the month?
Are they moving to the other side of the country and just want to make a quick sale?
Are they selling the car for emotional reasons, like revenge or spite?
You can use all these facts to get the best deal for yourself and still give the other side what they want because you’ll be able to elevate your appeal to multiple levels.
5. Know when and how to walk away from the deal.
Many people refuse to walk away from a negotiation.
Once they start, they think they have to stick with it because if they walk away they feel like they’ve lost.
This is a huge mistake.
Walking away from negotiations doesn’t mean you’ve lost.
It means you find the terms of the agreement unacceptable.
You may not get what you want if you walk away from negotiations, but realize that the other side doesn’t get what they want either.
If you’re willing to walk away from a negotiation, the other side has two choices.
They can either be forced to give up on getting what they want from you, or they’ll have to make concessions to keep you at the bargaining table.
Either way, you win.
This may be the most important rule of negotiating.
Master negotiators everywhere use this tactic, from flea market value hunters to heads of state.
Walking away requires great inner strength and self-discipline.
It shows the other side that you have other ways to get what you want.
It shows the other side what they have isn’t as important to you as they thought it was.
It shows them that they don’t have power over you, which is an important precedent to set early.
If you don’t want to work weekends in exchange for that corner office, walk away.
If the used car salesman doesn’t have the car you want on the lot or won’t budge on the price, walk away.
If the salary is inadequate for your value to the project and they won’t entertain a raise, walk away.
Walk away from a negotiation, and the other side will take notice.
This will feel like a risk, it will feel like you’ll lose and not get anything at all.
But it’s a risk you have to be prepared to take if you truly want more in life.
If you’ve been confident and persistent in the value you’re offering, you will end up getting more of what you want than if you hadn’t come to the table at all.
You need to be able to position yourself accordingly.
You don’t have to inspire fear to negotiate successfully but you do have to exude confidence and intelligence. You also have to be solid on what you want out of the negotiations, what your options are, and what you can leverage to maintain power. Once you are committed to what you want, look at negotiating from the other side’s perspective and evaluate what it is they want from you. Know when to walk away and don’t be afraid to show the other side that you’re willing to hold out until you get the deal you deserve.
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