Negotiation is an inescapable part of everyday life. We are constantly negotiating our space, our positions, our wealth, and our happiness. That’s why perfecting the art of masterful negotiation is vital for those looking to gain control over their lives and make the most of every second.
Applying the central tenets of good negotiation to your life will help you extract meaning and value from your interactions, whilst also ensuring that you are not taken advantage of in any situation. Here are the five golden rules for negotiating like a boss.
1. Make a Personal Connection
In negotiations of any kind, people often make the mistake of assuming that they should be confrontational. If you enter a negotiation expecting a bloody fight, that’s what you will get.
It’s important to avoid this and make a personal connection with your negotiating partner, making eye contact, smiling, and approaching the negotiation as a problem that can be solved together, rather than a battle for dominance. If you can’t negotiate in person, always opt for a face-to-face service like Skype rather than talking over the phone.
2. Be Specific About What You Want
Whether you’re asking for a pay raise or just establishing a chore schedule with your roommates, don’t skimp on the details. If you approach a negotiation with broad, vague goals such as “I want more money” or “I want to do less housework” then you are putting yourself at an immediate disadvantage.
Make clear that you know exactly what you want, why you want it, and how you are prepared. This means asking for a specific amount of money for your raise, or detailing exactly how the chore schedule should change in a way that would benefit everyone. People who are sure of themselves win negotiations.
3. Arm Yourself with Information
You will never win a negotiation if the person you are negotiating with sees that you are the less informed party. Whatever you’re negotiating, it is vital to arm yourself with as much information on the topic is possible, so that you know a good offer when you see it.
Let’s say you’re trying to secure a more favourable mortgage rate for your home. Before doing so, you could do nothing, or you could carry out research using free mortgage advisor services like Trussle, for instance, which will tell you everything you need to know about the market and your situation. With this knowledge, you will be able to pursue the best deal possible, without being taken advantage of.
4. Be Bold
Finally, it is important to think big and act boldly. Research has shown that when new employees are negotiating their pay, they nearly always lowball their salary requests. Whatever you think is a reasonable offer or request, take that and go as far as you can with it. The worst that can happen is a refusal, while the best that can happen is that you get more than you ever dreamed of.
Being able to approach any negotiation confidently, without necessarily coming off as cocky, is one of the most effective things you can do to make sure they go your way.
With these golden rules, you will always have the upper hand in the negotiations that are an unavoidable part of daily life.