Tips For A Healthy Negotiation With Your Boss

Negotiating with someone in a position of authority is always a daunting task. Whether asking for a raise or flexible working hours, you want to gain the advantages that you set out to achieve, without emerging weaker than the position at which you began.

Your approach to negotiation can make all the difference:

Know your goals and understand theirs

Know what you want, make a list of goals and the reasons to help you argue your case. Be aware of your range of flexibility in achieving these goals, ensuring you build a strategy within acceptable terms.

Understand that your boss is part of a chain who might have someone higher-up to negotiate with on your behalf. Study their motivations and challenges so that your plan can meet their expectations, while also making a strong case for yourself.

Know the market standards and prepare

Nothing beats a prepared mind. Know yourself well, list the skills and expertise that you contribute. Make a case for why you are a crucial part of their organization, without coming across as entitled. Talk to people and research the current market standards in your area of work; Glassdoor, is a great website to assess and review the industry.

Investigate your company and their concerns thoroughly. For example, if they cannot give you a raise at the moment due to financial concerns, be ready to negotiate a longer-term contract, achieving your targets within a time-period that works for you.

If you get flustered during negotiations, practice your points in front of a mirror. It will help your anxiety.

Listen and be calm

Listen to their concerns, it builds trust. If they cannot accept your request probe further. Build your argument based on their responses. Don’t talk over them by negotiating with yourself. Let them speak after you’ve put forward your request, and don’t counter offer before they have replied. For example, if you want a 10 percent raise don’t negotiate it to a 5 percent raise by reading into facial cues. Let them speak.

Do not mirror their behavior should the discussion become heated. Don’t be argumentative, arrogant or combative, it defeats your purpose. Listen calmly and move forward. They will not fight for you if they do not like your demeanour, no matter the validity of your reasoning.

Remember to wear your best suit; sartorial choices can be a great confidence booster. Be calm and confident as you head into the office and remember: we’re rooting for you!



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