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Killer Negotiator 101 – Everybody is a good guy

Killer Negotiator 101 – Everybody is a good guy

A good negotiator wins the deal for himself. A killer negotiator creates a win-win!

My name is Captain D. Most of what I write are things which have come from my experiences in dealing with thousands upon thousands of people from all over the world and judging what makes them tick. I have loved to do that all my life, and it has helped me in countless ways- professionally and personally. Just a few days back I had a major inspection on my ship. The results were crucial for the performance of the vessel. Everyone was looking forward to it. There was a lot of ground to cover, and there were several things which could have gone wrong. The inspector was a very senior, matter-of-fact guy with no interest in chit-chat. Not everything went perfectly, yet in the end we all walked out smiling with a glittering report which made everyone happy! The inspector’s words as he left were, “I will remember you”.

Long story short, I know how to negotiate! It’s not difficult, and being a negotiator can surely take you places. Let us start with a basic concept which many fail to understand.

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    1. Everybody believes they are the good guys

    Whether you are Bill Gates or a New York City cab driver, you have a philosophy- an internal code of what is right, what is wrong, what is enjoyable, what is not, etc. It is your unique collection of beliefs and behaviors. It’s surprising that many people never understand that concept! When you meet someone, they judge you. Those judgments come from that person’s experience- the way he has seen his life unfold. That’s okay. However, to be a killer negotiator you must remember that often you may be trying to convince another person using the yardstick you have prepared for yourself. That may not work very well for you.

    Conflict of Concepts

    I recently completed a voyage from Iraq to the United States and met people from both countries. I get to chatting easily and often end up finding out information which someone would never hear about from a public source such as a newspaper.

    Ask an American, “Why was your country attacked on 9/11?” He or she will say, “They hate us because we are free”. Ever ask a person from Iraq why America is dropping bombs on their houses? I have. They say, “The United States wants to eliminate Islam.” These are both ideas planted in the minds of the masses by people with a certain objective which they do not disclose. Whichever side you are on, one thing is for certain. Someone born in America thinks one way and someone born in Iraq thinks another. Both have reasons to believe what they believe.

    How to use this as a negotiator

    Even a terrorist is a crusader to himself. Killing people makes sense to him. He can dehumanize people for a greater cause, just like a soldier on the battlefront. A thief is desperate and to him stealing seems a logical way out. We forget that our beliefs are just as strong in our minds as the other person’s ideas are to him or her. To be a negotiator, you must understand that. You cannot try to convince someone otherwise unless you understand his persona completely and unbiasedly.

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    Weird people around you

    You will find many people making decisions which may seem weird to you.

    • A company executive I know fired someone just so that he could put the blame for his mistakes on him.
    • People are married to those they do not love for years, but it makes sense to them to stay married.
    • A friend of mine has taken a job which is about half the pay of his last job, but he now can spend more time with his family.
    • Another friend left his family for a girlfriend he had twenty years back in Brazil and went to live there with her.
    • Your boss accepted a modification plan for your office based solely on the fact that it is cheaper to implement, regardless of how awesome your idea was.

    You may not agree with all this, and that’s okay. When you are a negotiator you need to follow the philosophy below.

    “It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.” -Aristotle

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    Killer negotiator

      Action Plan: Learn more than you teach.

      As a negotiator, you will face situations when the person on the other side differs with you.

      It’s not the time to teach; it’s the time to learn.

      Listen and be unbiased. Try to make sense of what the other person said.

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      Think:

      1. Perhaps there is a point in that idea!
      2. Maybe I can rethink my ways to accommodate these demands.
      3. I may have gotten it all wrong so I will consider this way.
      4. His idea seems bizarre to me, but let me find out how he came to it.

      If you consider the above, even though someone may differ with you, he or she will still agree that you are easy to work with and a great person.

      If you have a fight or an argument in your personal life hold back and think the above thoughts. They are all applicable! The moment you think of a situation from the other person’s point of view, you are instantly in a position to negotiate! Fight it solely with your logic, and you will lose that position. A negotiator hits the problem from the other side of the table!

      The way to fight resistance is not with resistance. The only way to disarm opponents is to understand their philosophy and figure out why they feel that way. You can counter the idea only when you truly understand it. That is the only way to be a master negotiator. Do not hit the person; hit the philosophy, and the person will agree with you.

      Featured photo credit: Free Images via freeimages.com

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      Last Updated on July 22, 2019

      10 Killer Cover Letter Tips to Nail Every Interview Opportunity

      10 Killer Cover Letter Tips to Nail Every Interview Opportunity

      A cover letter is an introduction to what will be found in the resume. In a cover letter, the applicant is able to use a conversational tone, to explain why the attached resume is worth reviewing, why the applicant is qualified, and to express that it’s the best application the reader will see for the open position.

      Employers do read your cover letter, so consider the cover letter an elevator pitch. The cover letter is the overview of your professional experience. The information in the body presents the key qualifications, the things that matter. The cover letter is the “here is what will be found in my presentation”, which is the resume in this case.

      Something really important to point out- a cover letter should be written from scratch each time. Great cover letters are the ones that express why the applicant is the best for the specific job being applied to. Using a general cover letter will not lead to great results.

      This doesn’t mean that your cover letter should repeat your most valuable qualifications, it just means that you don’t want to recycle a templated, general letter, not specific to the position being applied to.

      Here’re 10 cover letter tips to nail every interview.

      1. Take a few minutes to learn about the company so that you use an appropriate tone

      Like people, every company has its own culture and tone. Doing a bit of research to learn what that is will be extremely beneficial. For instance, a technology start-up has a different culture and tone than a law firm. Using the same tone for both would be a mistake.

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      2. Don’t use generic cover letter terms — be specific to each company and position

      Hiring managers and recruiters can easily identify generic cover letters. They read cover letters and resumes almost every day. Using words and terms like: “your company” instead of naming the actual company, and “your website” instead of “in your about us section on www.abc123.com”, are mistakes. Be as specific as possible, it’s worth the additional few minutes.

      3. Address the reader directly if you can

      It is an outdated practice to use “To Whom it May Concern” if you know the person that will be reviewing your documents. You may wonder how you’ll know this information; this is where attention to detail and/or a bit of research comes into play.

      For example, if you are applying for a job using LinkedIn, many times, the job poster is listed within the job post. This is the person reading your documents when you “apply now”. Addressing that person directly will be much more effective than using a generic term.

      4. Don’t repeat the information found in the resume

      A resume is an action-based document. When presenting information in a resume, the tone isn’t conversational but leading with action instead, for example: “Analyze sales levels and trends, and initiate action as necessary to ensure attainment of sales objectives”.

      In a cover letter, you have the opportunity to deliver your elevator pitch: “I have positively impacted business development and growth initiatives, having combined two regions into one and achieving 17% in compound growth over the following three-year period”.

      Never use your resume qualifications summary as a paragraph in your resume. This would be repeating information. Keep in mind that your cover letter is the introduction to your resume- the elevator pitch- this is your opportunity to show more personality.

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      5. Tell the company what you can do for them

      As mentioned above, this is your chance to explain to the company why you are the best person for the open position. This is where you tell the company what you can do for them: “If hired as the next (job title) with (company name), I will cultivate important partnerships that will enhance operations while boosting revenue.”

      Many times, we want to take the reader through the journey of our life. It is important to remember that the reader needs to know why you are the best person for the job. Lead with that.

      6. Showcase the skills and qualifications specific to the position

      A lot of people are Jack’s and Jill’s of all trades. This can be a great big picture, but not great to showcase in a cover letter or resume.

      Going back to what was mentioned before, cover letters and resumes are scanned through ATS. Being as specific as possible to the position being applied to is important.

      If you are applying for a coding position, it may not be important to mention your job in high school as a dog walker. Sticking to the exact job being applied to is the most effective way to write your cover letter.

      7. Numbers are important — show proof

      It always helps to show proof when stating facts: “I have a reputation for delivering top-level performance and supporting growth so that businesses can thrive; established industry relationships that generated double digit increase in branch revenues”.

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      8. Use testimonials and letters of recommendations

      A cover letter is a great place to add testimonials and information from your letter of recommendations. Mirroring the example above, here is a good way to use that information:

      I have a history of consistently meeting and exceeding metrics: “(Name) rose through the company and became a Subject Matter Expert, steadily providing exceptional quality of work.”- Team Manager.

      9. Find the balance between highlighting your achievements and bragging

      There is fine line between telling someone about your achievements and bragging. My advice is to always use facts first, and support that with an achievement related to the fact, as shown in the examples above.

      You don’t want to have a cover letter with nothing but bullet points of what you have achieved. I can’t stress this enough — cover letters are your elevator pitch, the introduction to your resume.

      10. Check your length — you want to provide no more than an introduction

      The general rule for most positions is one page in length. Positions such as professors and doctors will require more in length (and they actually use CV’s); however, for most positions, one page is sufficient. Remember, the cover letter is an introduction and elevator pitch. Follow the logic below to get you started:

      Start with: “I am ready to deliver impeccable results as (name of company) next (Position Title).

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      What you know and like about the company, what initiatives, missions, goals resonate with you: “I read/listened to an interview that your Chief of Staff did on www.abc123.com. His/her statement regarding important up and coming employee engagement initiatives really resonated with me”.

      Overview of your qualifications and experience: “I have a strong background in developing, monitoring, and controlling annual processes and operational plans related to community relations and social initiatives”.

      Highlight/ Back up your facts with achievements: “I’m a vision-driven leader, with a proven history of innovation and mentorship; I led an initiative that reduced homelessness in four counties and received recognition from the local Homeless Network and the County Commissioner”.

      Close with what will you do for the company: “As your next (job title), I am focused on hitting the ground running as a transformational leader who is driven by challenge, undeterred by obstacles, and committed to the growth of (name of company).

      Bonus Advice

      When applying for a job online or in person, a resume and a cover letter are standard submissions. At least 98% of the time, both your resume and cover letter and scanned via ATS (applicant tracking systems). You can learn more about that process here.

      The information provided in a cover letter should be written and organized to be compatible with these scans, so that it can make to a human; from there, you want to make sure that you capture the recruiter and/or hiring managers attention.

      More About Nailing Your Dream Job

      Featured photo credit: Kaleidico via unsplash.com

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