Let’s make a deal! How to be a successful negotiator

One million dollars. That is the amount of income someone can lose over a lifetime if they don't negotiate their salary, according to Carnegie Mellon university. But we have some ways you can improve your negotiation skills.

ORLANDO, Fla. – One million dollars. That is the amount of income someone can lose over a lifetime if they don’t negotiate their salary, according to Carnegie Mellon University. This is especially true for women. So how can you improve your negotiation skills?

At the store, at home, and at the office, we do a lot of negotiating every day in our lives. But how successful are you?

Joel Garris, the CEO of Nelson Financial, advises, “When you give a range, make sure the lower end of that range is the number you’re likely to accept, otherwise you wind up negotiating against yourself.”

So, what can you do to up your negotiating skills? First, you need to prepare. Consider how will the other person respond, what objections could they have and how can you respond to those objections. Practice your responses with a friend or mentor.

“Make sure it’s a conversation you’re having face-to-face. Not on an email basis, I think too many people think they can just email and ask, when there’s a lot of back and forth in a conversation about negotiating your salary.” Garris states.

Also, timing is everything. If you are feeling anxious or tired, you are more likely to make deals that are less financially advantageous. Making sure you don’t leave the negotiating table empty handed.

While negotiating, you also want to listen more than you talk. Listen to the answers to your questions. This can provide information to boost your counteroffer. When you do speak up, don’t just talk about what the increase in salary will do for you, but what you can do for your company as well.