I recently read a book on making big business deals by Lewis Schiff. It talks about the top business players, the ones that rose up from poverty or the middle class, and now make over $1,000,000 a year. They are at the top for a reason, and that’s because they more quick-witted, emotionally intelligent, and smart. Most importantly, they follow their gut. That’s what makes them the deal makers and deal breakers.
If you have ever observed people that keep getting the raw end of the deal, it’s because they didn’t ask for more. Shockingly, I read that the majority of people who are offered a starting salary don’t realize that if they ask for more, they would likely get it. Obviously, a person hiring you as a freelancer or contractor has selectively chosen you, and are willing to pay for – you! The people who make the money decisions in companies and business majority of the time leave room for a higher negotiation in pay.
Even more shocking, is that women don’t ask as much as men. That is why there is a ‘gap’ today. Don’t get me wrong, sexism still exists but is extremely minor today in comparison to the women in the earlier 19th and 20th centuries. Ladies, ask for more – you’re worth it. Settle for more.
In Business Brilliant, a survey was conducted to compare how multimillionaires making over $1,000,000+ per year negotiate in comparison with people who make less than $1,000,000 per year. The survey found that millionaires expect the other party to exploit them, and it is up to them to find spots in the initial offer and find loopholes to leverage a better offer, not only for the negotiator to benefit but for the company they run to benefit. The compared counterpart respondents just want to be ‘fair’.
It’s a dog eat dog world out there, and you’ve got to have your wits about you or people will take advantage of you in the business world. Do your absolute best to learn, earn, and repeat. This is especially true if you’re lucky enough to live in America, a country where people move here to manifest their own ‘American Dream’ because there is no China Dream, European Dream, or African Dream.
“Coffee is forge closers.” – Glen Gary Glen Ross
The second part of deal-making is your rib cage. No, not talking about the one in your body, but those around you who work symbiotically with you. Your team. If a deal goes south, and many will, then you’ve got to have you’re A-Team with you to bounce you back up.
Another study found that multimillionaires actually have an extremely large network of people they know, referring to the Strength of Weak Ties. In the upper echelons of personal business, they have a tighter inner circle of people they collaborate with to make smart decisions in business, this is in comparison with less savvy business people who talk to everyone about their plans. If you’ve got ideas worth gold, tell your inner circle, don’t tell your neighbor down the street.
Getting what you want is all about asking for it. If you show up, do work that no one can replace, and make your way up the Klout Score, then you’re well on your way. Doing work you’re proud of builds your confidence, and that’s why a lot of really famous and wealthy people are so magnetic. When they step up to make a deal, they’ve got a lot running under their belt, not to mention backdoors. You may want to roll up your sleeves and get to work because if you’ve got the passion you’ll enjoy these moments of tension. You learn a lot about people when they are under pressure.
When negotiating, be willing to walk away. The old adage here goes, ‘The one who loves the least, controls the most.’ Be interested in making a good deal, but never show your more than halfway interested. If the person across from the table really wants to work with you and make a deal, they will show it.
If you’re not satisfied with your lot, then the only person responsible is the one looking you back in the mirror. Settle for more. Do work that makes you confident, so when you negotiate you know you’ve got the work to back it up. If you ask for more, you can initially get more. The future belongs to those who ask – and if you get a no, which you will encounter a lot in business, then you increase your odds. Success in negotiation is a numbers game, like many other things. Some things work out, and some things don’t but hey – don’t take it personally, it’s just business 😉