Negotiating With People of Prestige and Power
Sometimes, when we negotiate with people that we perceive as having more authority, power, or prestige, than ourselves, we become fearful or intimidated. Then, we tend not to negotiate with them as firmly as we might with other individuals. This can occur for several reasons...
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When you negotiate with people of prestige or power, do you become meek?
Sometimes, when we negotiate with people that we perceive as having more authority, power, or prestige, than ourselves, we become fearful or intimidated. Then, we tend not to negotiate with them as firmly as we might with other individuals. This can occur for several reasons ...
1. You don't want to alienate the person of power for fear of losing something more important in the future.
2. You fear the possible retribution that might come from being perceived as a 'difficult person.'
3. You want to be perceived as a person that everyone can get along with.
You could have all kinds of reasons and thoughts that create barriers in your mind, as to why you don't want to negotiate from a stronger position. Regardless of the thoughts, seek to understand the impediments that prevent you from negotiating and address them.
When you negotiate with your boss, a power broker, or anyone that has more perceived authority than yourself, you can utilize some of the following strategies.
1. Since the person has more prestige, power, or authority, appeal to their sense of fairness. You can cast yourself in the position of someone lower in stature that seeks their support. Depending upon the personality type of the individual you are negotiating with, that person's ego may be stroked. Let her know how much you look up to her and the 'good' she's contributing to your environment. Be prepared with a very good rebuttal if she tries to turn this strategy against you by suggestion the things she's already done for you should be your reward.
2. Seek grounds of mutual agreement as to the value you possess and be prepared to substantiate why your position warrants merits.
3. Exploit, in a positive manner, any leverage you can utilize. If you've recently been cited for something of notoriety, especially if it relates to your goal of the negotiation, mention it as additional justification as to why you should receive what you seek.
4. Suggest to the other person that they prepare to see you in a different manner, from which they may be accustomed to viewing you. Then, let them know you're putting on your 'business hat,' or whatever metaphor is appropriate. If possible tie a positive trait that they possess to your actions and suggest you are attempting to imitate the good 'business practices' you've gleaned from them. Once you get their 'buy in,' you're more than half way home to getting what you want from the negotiation.
Eventually, when negotiating, if you continuously put the feelings and desires of others ahead of your own, you will become very frustrated. In addition, your self respect will eventually start to suffer. You will look in the mirror and not like the person looking back at you.
When all is said and done, if you can't summon the courage needed to negotiate with those that have more perceived power, and if the prize is large enough, consider having someone else negotiate for you. Just be aware of the inherent risk in doing so ... and everything will be right with the world.
The negotiation lessons are ...
* When you negotiate with someone in a higher position than yourself, be mindful of what they might seek from you. If possible, give it to them and appeal to their sense of fairness to get what you seek.
* If you find it difficult to negotiate with those that have greater authority, put your mind into a psychological state that cast you into a figure that can't be beaten. Really psyche yourself up. Gather background information that will help you substantiate why you deserve your goal of the negotiation and start negotiating.
* If you can't summon within yourself the courage, strength, or whatever is needed to combat that which prevents you from negotiating with 'stronger' figures, and you have no other source to turn to for assistance, be prepared to live with the consequences of not negotiating.