A Woman’s Guide to Successful Negotiating

Recommended Read: A Woman’s Guide to Successful Negotiating. Do you want useful ways to get what you want? Check out our interview with the authors where we cover moving from confrontation to negotiation, and so much more.


Guide to Successful Negotiation

Image courtesy of Ambro/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net


About the Book

A Woman's Guide to Successful NegotiatingLearn from women such as Andrea Jung, CEO of Avon, Cathy Black, New York City School Chancellor, Emmy winning actress Christine Baranski  and television anchor Alexis Glick, how to get what you deserve in every aspect of your life, whether it is earning more money, buying your next car, surviving divorce or just getting your husband and children to help more around the house.  In their award winning A Woman’s Guide to Successful Negotiating, selected by Atlanta Woman magazine as one of the 50 best books for working women, father-daughter team, Lee and Jessica Miller show their readers how to negotiate everything. In this highly readable book, filled with illustrative stories and easy to use techniques you will discover the 3 keys to negotiating success for women and learn how to avoid  the 10 most common mistakes that women make when negotiating.

Q & A with the Author

Diahann Boock:Oooo
It seems many confuse confrontation with negotiation.  Confrontation often results in win-lose.  Negotiation should result in win-win.  What can you suggest to help change how we frame our thinking to move from confrontation to negotiation?

Lee Miller: Assuming that negotiating is about haggling, confrontation, fighting or bullying, misapprehends what negotiating is really all about. Negotiating is about getting something you want. To do that requires motivating people to give you what you want. Haggling,  confrontation, fighting or bullying rarely motivates anyone to want to help you and is therefore typically counterproductive. Another mistake people often make which is encouraged by many books on negotiating is to look at negotiating as either win/win or win/lose. Negotiation is often about perception. Win/win negotiating assumes that you can change you proposal in ways that make the outcome better for the other person and still get what you want. Sometimes that is  not only possible but the right way to go about reaching an agreement. At other times the right way to reach agreement is not to change your proposal but to show how what you want supports some value or interest that the other person cares about. There is no one right way to negotiate in every situation That is why we develop the 3 Cs “Convince, Collaborate and Create“ approach to negotiating which provides many different easy to negotiating tools that can be used  in different situations.

Diahann Boock: In today's economy, as people are getting new job offers, I'm seeing reluctance to negotiate based on the hangover affect of unemployment fears.  Beyond "knowing your worth" what can you share to overcome salary negotiation fears?

Lee Miller: Start by recognizing employers rarely offer you everything they can in their initial offer because they expect you to negotiate. As a former Fortune 1000 head of Human Resources I never saw anyone lose a job offer because they asked for something although you can lose an  offer if you ask in the wrong way. One way which is almost always wrong is to “make demands.” Know your worth, know the market, know the company and have arsons to support your requests. Always let the company know how excited you are about the job opportunity and that you really want to work out a package that works for everyone so you can join them.

Diahann Boock: You shared many stories with successful and unsuccessful purchase outcomes.  Many very accomplished women were unable to reach their desired outcomes and had to walk away.  Do you have any recommendations on how to project confidence and increase the likelihood of being taken seriously?

Lee Miller: The first thing to remember is that the negotiation is not over when you walk away. That is often simply an intermediate step on the way to reaching an agreement. Let them know that if they can deal issues to feel free to get back to you. Always leave the door open and let them know you want to work with them, and if they can’t give you what you need this time there is always the possibility of working together in the future. Being willing to walk away demonstrates confidence.  Being well prepared also will increase your confidence. Having alternatives will help you project confidence so as part of your preparation determine what alternatives you have if you can’t reach an agreement with the person you are negotiating with.

Diahann Boock: We recently added a financial professional to our site.  In our early discussions she shared how important it is for women to focus on their financial future.  Women live longer than men.  Divorce rate continues to hover at 50%.  Can you share specific activities, that typically we would not consider negotiating, that we must do to ensure we are protecting (and growing) our financial future?

Lee Miller: Usually the biggest impact on your financial future comes from how you manage your career. Successfully asking for a raise and or a promotion can result in hundreds of thousands of dollars in added income over the course of your career. Obviously negotiating big items such as cars, appliances or homes is important to your financial well being. However, negotiating in your every day transactions such as home repairs, discounts on travel and every day purchases can, over time, cumulatively amount to large sums of money available to invest in other things.

Diahann Boock: What do you have to say to all the women who want to be liked and therefore don't negotiate?

Lee Miller: Being liked has nothing to do with not negotiating. If you learn how to negotiate you will not only be liked but you will be respected. No one really likes people who are consistently taken advantage of they simply use them.  A friend who takes advantage of your desire to be liked to keep you from negotiate to get what you deserve isn’t much of a friend.

Diahann Boock: Can you recommend a few low risk situations where women can "practice" negotiating to get her feet wet & build confidence?

Lee Miller: When you are shopping in a small store and are interested in buying something ask to speak to the owner or manager. (Hourly staff often don’t care whether you buy or not). Ask the owner or manager to tell you about the product or service and why you should buy it. Develop some rapport with them.  Then ask them if you decide to buy it if they give you a discount. Also any time you are buying more than one item ask for a discount. You won’t always get the discount but you will be surprised how often you do. In any event, you are never worse off for trying. As hockey great Wayne Gretzky used to say: “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”

About the Authors

LEE MILLER a graduate of Harvard Law School, is a career coach, managing director of NegotiationPlus.com and an Adjunct Professor at Columbia University and Seton Hall University Business School, where he teaches influencing and negotiating. He is also the Career Columnist for the NJ Star Ledger, the largest newspaper in New Jersey.  He was the head of Human Resources at TV Guide, USA Networks and at Barney’s New York, as well as a Senior Human Resources Executive at R.H. Macy & Co. He is also the author of UP: Influence Power and the U Perspective- The Art of Getting What You Want.

JESSICA MILLER is a Director at Cushman & Wakefield, Inc. where she is a Commercial Real Estate Advisor in the McLean, Virginia office specializing in corporate tenant representation services throughout the Washington, DC Metropolitan area. Prior to entering the real estate industry, Jessica was an Investment Banking Analyst with Deutsche Bank in Baltimore, Maryland. Jessica has a Masters of Science in Real Estate from Johns Hopkins University and is a graduate of Virginia Tech’s Honors Program with a Bachelors of Science degree in Finance.

Buy Now

KontakTid CRM

Executive Coaching

I want to take the business of me to the next level!  I’m looking for an executive coach that will provide hands-on instruction, feedback and counseling to help me move my career and business forward. I need someone who will check in with me on a regular basis! I want to make more money!

Start Now

What's your Question?

Customers Say

"Diahann is a wonderful resource and an expert in assisting highly motivated professionals focused on growing their career. Diahann has the experience and instincts to provide thoughtful guidance in helping any professional expand their ability to effectively produce results. She is creative, analytical, professional and personable at every step. I highly recommend Diahann to any professional motivated to reach the next level." ~ Jonathan


Proud Member

Business Success Coach Network