Helping a client negotiate a $1MM compensation package with a likely multimillion-dollar payout has a lot in common with helping another client negotiate a $50K compensation package.
The first one has a lot more components.
But a core principle of the way I work with negotiation is the same for every offer.
Negotiate what actually matters to you.
I once watched a parent tell her 3-year-old son that he could be upstairs, or he could be downstairs, but he couldn’t stay on the stairway landing, where he was currently playing.
He plopped down on the floor with a loud, “WHYYYYYYY?”
He could sense that she had made an arbitrary request.
After all, he wasn’t getting in the way. Nobody was trying to go upstairs or downstairs, and he didn’t have toys out that people could trip over.
My sense was that she realized she had made an arbitrary demand. But she dug her heels in.
People get into power struggles like this in negotiations by doing stuff like trying to negotiate for things that they aren’t actually grounded in.
And then digging their heels in.
Mom wasn’t grounded in her request for son to go either upstairs or downstairs.
So when she demanded it, she got pushback. (I have *so* done this, too.)
When you create a power struggle in any relationship, that means you’re opponents as opposed to allies.
People do more for their friends.
And if you make arbitrary requests, people can feel that.
And, some people like the game (the manipulation).
But, my clients care about building a trusting, authentic relationship.
That’s how they got the original offer.
So, it’s a violation of the tone of the relationship to, at the negotiation stage, suddenly start talking about things that aren’t actually important to them.
Many, many people avoid the whole thing by never negotiating. It's understandable. If that's you, I like that you're not into being gamey or BSing.
I want you to know, though, that you can *absolutely* strengthen the relationship through negotiation.
When you ask for what is really important to you, your confidence (the truth) makes you compelling.
Yeah, we don’t get everything we want all the time.
But the energy-first point of view on negotiation is that if you’re grounded in your ask, and see it as a win-win, you’re so much more likely to get it.
That’s how I've seen clients negotiate bunches of money, unusual schedules, unique titles, or never-before-granted-in-company-history perks.
Much of my work on negotiation is around helping you to be grounded in your requests. The organization benefits from you having a comp package that supports you in feeling inspired to do your best work.
(So does your team, your community, your family.)
If you want to explore working together on negotiation, or anything else, you can set up an exploratory call with me here.
Emma Garrett is an Executive Career Coach, helping high-integrity leaders position themselves for what’s next in work and life. Ready to start doing things differently? Consider scheduling a free call to share your situation and goals or checking out the resources at www.emma-garrett.com.