Get What You Want
By now you know you need to make bolder asks for bigger opportunities and better compensation packages. You’re ready to work hard and negotiate for the resources, support, and money you need to achieve your ambitious dreams.
Which is all well and good, but perhaps you’re wondering: Exactly how do I do that? What are the appropriate strategies and words to use in a negotiation?
To help you get a jump start on preparing for your big ask, here is a sample script that demonstrates key strategies for mutual-win negotiation at work.
Set the Agenda
Express gratitude and open the conversation with appropriate small talk.
I appreciate you taking the time out of your busy day to sit with me one-on-one. I’d like to take this opportunity to bring you up to speed on my work and discuss how I can contribute more value moving forward. I’d like to discuss the possibility of expanding my role and compensation for the coming year.
Articulate the Value You Bring to the Table
Build your case based on specific facts and figures and how the employer benefited from your efforts.
Looking back, we had a very productive year. I helped secure an additional $50K for Project A through fundraising efforts that reached 2,000 new subscribers and generated four positive press articles. I managed 18 client accounts and closed six new accounts that generated a total of $340K in revenues. Additionally, I designed and conducted our first client satisfaction survey that helped us gain key insights for the new sales initiatives we’ll be planning for this year.
Help Them See and Decide
Hand over testimonials or praise.
Here are some nice things our clients and stakeholders have said about my work.
Make it clear how your success and accomplishments benefits the employer.
I’ve become a credentialed or certified Client Satisfaction expert, adding credibility and prestige to our operations.
Express Shared Interest
Would you agree that my contributions have added value to this company?
Express shared interest in the company’s success. Make an ask for a concrete title.
I’m invested in helping the company grow and would like to take on a leadership role as VP of Client Satisfaction to help manage its continued success.
Help Them Help You
Provide tangible proof that you are fit for the promotion. Give something your boss can show her/his boss to make the case.
I have some some ideas on how I can add more value in this new role. Here’s my proposal with plans for the upcoming quarter.
I know that one of the areas we can improve upon is client retention, so I’d like to spearhead the planning and execution of an incentive program. Here are my suggestions on how to make this happen.
Make the Ask
Hand over benchmark reports/research.
If that sounds good, I hope you’ll consider me for a promotion and raise that’s commensurate with my level of experience. I’ve done some research into the market rate for this new role, and here’s what I’ve found.
What would be the best way for us to move forward?
In Case of Pushback, Respond With Open-Ended Questions
If this is not a good time for a raise, when would be a good time to revisit this discussion?
If this needs to be discussed with upper management or human resources, who would be the right person to include in this conversation?
If this isn’t something you had in mind for me, would you let me know what you had in mind? Also, what are the opportunities for advancement within this organization?
Now, Your Turn
Use this as a framework to write your own script. Think about how you will articulate your unique value and frame it in the best possible light. What additional goods or services can you offer that your employer or client will benefit from? How will you express your shared interest in helping the company or client grow, and what more can you ask for? Finally, what kind of pushback can you anticipate in reaction to your ask?
Brainstorm possible scenarios and outcomes. Then practice your negotiation script out loud. Preparation and practice come first; negotiation prowess will follow.
Ji Eun (Jamie) Lee is a negotiation trainer specializing in helping ambitious, self-starter women achieve negotiation prowess. She facilitates hands-on workshops for Bullish Conference, Athena Center for Leadership at Barnard College, and at Bryn Mawr College. She also works as Director of Business Operations at TreSensa, a mobile gaming startup in NYC. Follow her on Twitter.