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The Negotiating Table

We know a gentleman who’s bought and sold businesses for years. He closes a deal about every ninety days. He said that every time he buys, he feels like he paid too much. Conversely, when he sells, he always feels that he didn’t get enough.

Negotiating is a nerve-wracking process – whether it’s for a job, a car, a loan, or anything else!

So today, we’ll serve up some delicious tips for negotiating your next deal. Think of it as a three-course meal – an appetizer, the main course, and dessert.

There are two things to keep in mind before we get to our three courses.

  • Know what you want. What are your taste buds craving? What’s your ideal deal? Have a clear picture of this before you start.       
  • Ask for what you want. It may not be on the menu. Ask for it anyway. You never know – the chef might be able to whip it up for you!

Appetizers
You won’t get filled up at this stage, but you will get a taste of what’s to come. During this course, you’re feeling things out. What are they looking for from you? What might they offer?

Will you be working together long-term if this deal is consummated? If so, focus on building the relationship. Look for win / win. And keep this in mind – if they like you, you may get a better deal.

Try to determine how much leverage you have. Why do they want to do this deal? How badly do they want it? Do they have to do it? Who’s in a stronger position – you or them?

Be careful not to put too much on the table during this course. For example, you’ll save things like your price and terms for the next course.

Main course
You may walk away before you get to this course. If you’re still interested, here’s a caveat. Negotiations often stall here. So if you like what you’re hearing, find ways to keep things moving along.

If you get stuck on a point, set it aside and come back to it later. Maybe if you chew on something else, this will be more appetizing later.

Don’t lose sight of the bigg picture because you’re trying so hard to win a point. You may get a morsel but lose the meat!

You shouldn’t concede unless they do so as well. This sets the tone you want. For example, let’s say you’re negotiating your salary. Maybe they can’t quite pay you what you want, but they are willing to give you some additional time off. You may accept that trade-off.

Dessert
You may decide you don’t want dessert – you know you can’t come to terms. But assuming you decide to stay, you’re ready to negotiate all the details. That’s one reason this course can be the most nerve-wracking of all. Plus you’re getting closer to actually committing.

You probably won’t feel fully satisfied at the end. Be happy if they’re equally unhappy!

Ultimately, they may reject your offer or you may turn them down. In either case, what are your options? Keep them open so you have a back-up.

What techniques do you use at the negotiating table?
Share them with us by leaving a Comment below.

Our bigg quote is by John F. Kennedy. We’re sure he had loftier ideas when he said this, but it’s still appropriate.

“Let us never negotiate out of fear. But let us never fear to negotiate.”

So, enter every negotiation knowing that, you don’t have to do it, but don’t be afraid to do it.

In our next blog, we’ll answer a question from a member who wants to know if she should keep her job or buy a franchise. Hopefully by then, we’ll be recovered from this bigg meal! Until next time, here’s to your bigg success!

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The Confidence Game

If you have owned your own business, you have probably struggled with self-confidence from time to time. You may even relate to and have suggestions for one of our listeners.

We received an e-mail from Beth, who is in the process of starting her own consulting company. She says her problem is that there’s a little voice in her head that keeps pointing out what she doesn’t know. It’s paralyzing her progress, and she would like some advice on how to get past this.

Don’t feel alone, this is a common problem. We congratulate Beth for having the courage to make this move. George has a theory that, as an entrepreneur, the highs are higher and the lows are lower when own your own business. So welcome to the roller coaster!

Here are some tips on how to get past the lows by giving yourself a boost in confidence:

Don’t expect perfection
33 Allow yourself to be human], by setting achievable goals. For instance, many people feel they don’t know the financial side of business. Read books, take a class, or find someone you can team up with. Do what you do well and let others help you so that you can get started and tackle your challenges.

Rebut the cruel inner critic
Counter your negatives with positives. For example, when that little tells you what you don’t know, tell it what you do know. When it tells you why you shouldn’t take a risk, tell it why you should. Focus on what you can do and what you know you will do.

Be Your Best Friend
Friends tell you what you need to hear, but when they do, it’s in a caring way. We help our friends get through tough situations in encouraging ways. So why not offer yourself suggestions in the same manner? Don’t get down on yourself and be critical just because you didn’t do something right or because you don’t know something.

Meditate
It’s important to practice thinking positive. Take a break, think about a task you completed that made you feel confident, and remember how good it felt. When you go to bed, focus on three good things that you did well that day. It’s a great way to end the day, by focusing on what you have accomplished.

Our quote today is by Stan Smith.

“Experience tells you what to do; confidence allows you to do it.”

Get out of your own way…you’ve got places to go! Tomorrow we’ll discuss getting the money off your back. We’ll share some recent research on monkeys that you’ll find interesting.

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The Single Biggest Barrier To Your Success

Yesterday, we traveled to your future. To the life you dream about. We helped you visualize your future and challenged you to perform this visualization exercise every day for the next month.

Today, we’ll look at the single biggest barrier to your success. You may surprised to hear this.

The one big thing that stands between most people and success is fear.
We’re taught that fear is a good thing. And it can be. But it also can be counterproductive. One fear, in particular, keeps most people from achieving their dreams.

The most dangerous fear of all is the fear of failure.
This fear keeps more people from starting toward their dream, let alone actually accomplishing it, than anything else. As we mature, we get more self-conscious. We’re afraid we’ll be embarrassed. Afraid to be different. Afraid of being made fun of.

Plan to fail forward.
Successful people look at failure as an opportunity to learn. So the faster you fail, the faster you learn. Fail often enough and you have a leg up on all of those people who fear failure. Isn’t that most people?

Successful people are driven by the fear of not trying.
We got this idea from a great little book called I Can’t Accept Not Trying by Michael Jordan, the great basketball player. It’s a quick read that we highly recommend.

Have you ever been so fed up with something that you just had to do something about it? Of course, you have. All of us have!

W. Clement Stone, in his book The Success System That Never Fails, referred to this feeling as “inspirational dissatisfaction”. You can overcome your fear of failure by cultivating this fear of not trying. When you just can’t stand it any more. You have to find out if you can do it.

People who go for it reach a point where their fear of not trying exceeds their fear of failure. So they go for it. Some succeed beyond their wildest imaginations. Others fail forward. So they try again.

Our quote today is by Winston Churchill.

“Success is never final.
Failure is never fatal.
It’s courage that counts.”

Overcome your fears by living your dreams. What can you lose by trying?

Next time, we’ll tell the story on storytelling. How and why to tell a story well.

Until then, here’s to your bigg success!