How to Be a Better Negotiator

There’s a negotiator in all of us and whether we realize it or not, we negotiate every day. Teenagers negotiate with their parents to borrow the car on Friday nights; parents negotiate with their kids to clean their room. Employees and employers both negotiate on every level daily. Someone, somewhere, at this very moment is working hard to convince someone else of something.

Most people get stressed out when it comes time to go buy a new car, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Learning a few positive negotiating skills can make any buying situation a little more fun and mutually beneficial to both parties.

The first thing that you need to remember is that you are negotiating for the best deal possible. Keep your motives honest and keep a positive, upbeat attitude. Next, you never want to get anxious or in a hurry; this could be translated into being pushy or overbearing. The person that you are negotiating with should feel as relaxed and unthreatened as possible. You really want them to feel like they treated you right and gave you a good deal, rather than you “worked” them.

Knowing when the time is right to negotiate is another skill to have; for instance, if you’ve been on your job for quite a while and you feel its time for a raise, timing is crucial. If your boss is high on life because benchmarks or numbers were met, then the time is right to ask for a raise or promotion. If his dog ran away, his car broke down and he spilled coffee on his shirt going into a meeting, its safe to say that the timing is all wrong. Observing and being patient will ensure success during your barter.

Knowing what you want, and keeping your eye on the prize, so to speak, will help you be persistent, and you can be persistent without being rude. When dealing with any type of salesperson, you have to realize they are going to try to get you to agree to the highest price possible, that’s how they make their money. And know that they always start high in anticipation that you, the customer is going to negotiate with them. At this point hopefully you have done your homework and you know the price you want to pay, so stand your ground. Remember; keep your eye on the prize. Your positive persistence will eventually wear the person down and you will get what you want for the price you want to pay for it.

It’s also important to be able to think on your feet. You know the end result that you want, but there is no way of knowing the objections the other person has, or what direction how the conversation will actually take. It’s likely that the person you are negotiating with has been down this road, and probably has some surprises for you. Don’t let that rattle you; just meet the objections with the positive reinforcements of your ideal end result. Stay in control of the conversation and always lead them back to the result. When your salesman, boss service provider says, “So how ’bout those Dodgers”, take the conversation back to the subject!

Knowing what you want and what you are willing to do to get what you want will enhance your negotiating skills. Remember, being positive and honest the very best policy. Add a little charm and how could anyone tell you ‘no’?

Loving the Present Moment

In today’s troubled times when everything seems uncertain it’s easy to lose sight of what’s going right and falling into the doom and gloom trap. Getting caught up in the fear narrows your vision and zaps your energy.

We cannot create prosperity when we are gripped with fear. Prosperity can only be created when you are in vibrational resonance with it. One of the quickest ways to increase your vibration and resonate with your vision of prosperity is to love what’s present at the moment.

How often do you stop and recognize all the things in your life that are right? Most people spend far more time focused on what’s wrong. What’s missing in that picture?

When you consciously stop, appreciate, and focus on the good, essentially loving what’s there, you feel better, which raises your vibration. Energetically you become a better match for more good stuff to come into your life. As you tune in to what’s right, you’re more alert to notice when things are going right creating a cycle of feeling good.

Have you ever had a day that starts lousy, you get up late, the dog runs away, your car acts up, by the time you get to work you’ve reviewed all the things that are not what you would like them to be and you’ve decided your life stinks. Then you open your purse and you find a love note your 6 year old left you, you just melt and the day is instantly better.

That’s what gratitude does for you. One simple gesture can shift your energy from low vibration to a higher vibration. There are many quick and easy methods to help you love what’s present or adapt an attitude of gratitude.

If you like the written word a gratitude list, where at least once a day you add 5 things to a running list, or a gratitude journal would do the trick.

If you’re more the verbal type try saying 3 things you’re grateful for at the dinner table or before bed name 3 new things you are grateful for, for the day.

If tactile things are more your style try a gratitude stone. Find a small stone and put it in your pocket, each time you touch it think of the things your grateful for. This usually results in at least twice a day focusing on gratitude. Women may find it easier to use a key chain or bracelet.

The more you love what is and express gratitude the easier it becomes and before you know it you’ll be grinning just because the sun is setting or because your son actually put the orange juice away. These seemingly small occurrences can yield big results as you become a vibrational match to what you want to attract.

Personally I think it’s much more fun to love what is than scowl at what isn’t ‘perfect’… yet. And I’m pretty sure you get fewer wrinkles!

Developing the Narrative for the PowerPoint Presentation

The way you present the text/data is vital in a presentation. Post the first stage of inquiring and collecting the vital information, the stage comes when you need to prepare what goes into the ppt. When I am given the task of preparing the presentation, at the second stage this is what I do -

Briefing meeting with the subject matter experts (SME’s): At this stage, I already have the objective of the presentation and the background information on who would be providing the content, I then arrange for a briefing meeting with the content providers. I ask him/them to mail across the material post the meeting. During the meeting, they explain and show the reference material that needs to be used.

Prepare the first draft: Post the meeting I go through the material in detail, I prepare the story line in a word format and I don’t worry about the representation at this stage at all. The story needs to be as in-depth as possible. I also carry out my research on the topic and embed that in the narrative.

Second discussion with the SME: I then arrange for a second session with the content provider (subject matter expert) and share the narrative with them. Every line is then introspected and discussed upon to freeze the narrative so that the message it crisp and clear. This I do by asking relevant questions to the content provider whenever I feel that the message needs to be more accurate and technically/conceptually correct, strong and as per the industry standards.

Organise the narrative: I then organise the narrative so that the message does not seem disconnected, is coherent and connected – following the basic rule – setting expectation with the audience (agenda), introduction, body, conclusion/recommendation, annexure, next steps and contact details. While organising the content, you need not worry about what text goes to each slide – you just chunk the portions of the content to frame a story line. For example, it may happen that introduction can have more than 1 or 2 slides depending on the kind of representation you would want to give to the deck.

Freezing the narrative usually takes two/three sessions, but it is the most important task that needs to be completed prior to jumping in the design stage. The output that you achieve here will be extremely lengthy like a research/speech and this won’t go as is in the deck. However, framing this narrative provides you a solid foundation and serves as notes and reference material to the presenter, sales people and other stakeholders.