Negotiating does not come naturally to most – nor is it easy. It is, however, the number one factor in creating your ideal work environment. If you want better pay, more hours, benefits, a flexible schedule, etc., you need to ask for it.
If I could go back, I’d tell my younger self to really think about what you want, develop a reason, be consistent, hold your ground and be confident with your words. For anyone to take you seriously, you need to take yourself seriously first. Know your value, know your abilities, and fight for your integrity.
A few other things I’ve learned along the way:
- In regards to pay, the first person to throw out a number loses. Redirect the conversation until they provide a rate first – THEN negotiate.
- Always back up your argument/question with a reason. Anything is better than nothing.
- Be patient and take your time. If you’re in a rush, you will concede.
- Do your research and understand what you’re asking for. Can the company meet your needs?
- Be willing to walk away. Maybe it’s not the right fit. For me, some ‘failed’ negotiations have ultimately created the best outcomes.
Your career path is up to you. Ask and you shall receive. And if you don’t, try again or consider moving on to a different opportunity.