This is an excerpt from my May 2013 Monthly Financial Review. I thought it was worth reposting here.
A lesson in negotiation
I've been reading a lot lately, mostly business and personal development books. Here's a quote from Sebastian Marshall's Ikigai:
A lot of people don't understand good negotiating. They think it's about getting the best price—no, no, no. Good negotiation is about figuring out what you can offer that's worth more to the other person than you, and what they can offer that's worth more to you than them.
A few months ago, when the children's camp I worked with last summer invited me to come back this year, I wrote my first salary negotiation letter. I thought it was pretty darn good. I explained that I wanted twice as much as last year and why I was worth that much to their company. I love working at camp, but right now my main priority is paying off my debt. It just didn't make sense for me to live in the Russian countryside all summer long to only work 3 hours a day teaching English. I could have worked the same number of hours in Moscow city, made more money and had the rest of the time to do whatever I wanted (most likely work more) instead of being trapped in the middle of nowhere.
Well, the company wasn't willing to pay me that much. Honestly, I would've settled for a 50% raise, but even that was too much for them. Fortunately, someone high up in the company understood good negotiation much better than I did. They knew that more money from the company wasn't my primary desire, but what I really wanted was more opportunities to make more money for myself. They also recognized that the company has resources to help me do that which are worth more to me than they are to them.
So we settled on a small raise. Plus, I have a classroom in the center of Moscow that I can use to host my own group classes for an incredibly small fee, they advertise my private lessons on their company website and at camp I have my own quiet office with internet where I can teach lessons on Skype. Furthermore, we started an Extra English program where kids at camp can take additional small group classes during free time. This summer, I'll be making 50-100% more than what I originally asked for, but my money isn't coming out of the camp's pocket. Now that's smart negotiating. I can't take any credit for it, but what a valuable business lesson.
I'm Mitch Harmatz, a blogger. I`d like to write an article for your website wondered if this was possible?
I was thinking I could write you an article on Industrial Business, would work well with your readers. Or you have any suggestion let me know.
My guest post articles are usually 350 to 400 words of high quality unique content and would ask for 1 or 2 links to a relevant website of my choice.
Please let me know if you may be interested.
plz Replay to email@example.com
This is awesome. And I gotta grab Ikigai.
First off, quick refresher - what is negotiation?
Good negotiation is about discovering things you value a low amount that the other party values a high amount, finding things they value a low amount that you value highly, and exchanging. I wrote about this in "How to Avoid Exchange-Based Relationships" -
A lot of people don’t understand good negotiating. They think it’s about getting the best price – no, no, no. Good negotiation is about figuring out what you can offer that’s worth more to the other person than you, and what they can offer that’s worth more to you than them.
it’s okay to have pure exchanges sometimes, like if you’re just buying something once. But if you can transcend that, move it beyond the exchange and into looking out for each other, that can be a beautiful thing.
At the beginning of this summer(June 2013), I moved halfway across the country for an internship. Most people say college is the first time you really get a taste of living on your own, but I ended up going to a school about 20 minutes from home, so for me, moving for my internship has been my first time really experiencing being out on my own. It was much more of a lifestyle change than moving to college. I would now be earning money(I had never had a job before), and I was able to experience what it is like to have a steady four-figure paycheck coming in every two weeks.
I'm not really sure how my income compares to that of a typical intern, but I had resolved early on not to go splurging all of my newly-acquired money. I wanted to save most of my income, so that I could spend it once I went back to school(and once I would no longer have a steady income). Privy to my motive, my parents graciously offered to pay for my groceries($50 a week), as well as help cover my expenses as I first settled in(airfare, first month's rent, and enrollment fee for a gym, which came out to just under 1k).
Saving money was just one of several goals I set when I first got started. Most of my goals were tied to the lifestyle changes I went through. Aside from a consistent income, the next most prominent change was that I was now completely in control of my own food consumption(my college has dining halls). I would be grocery shopping and preparing all of my meals. I set a goal accordingly: I would eat healthier. I will probably do a post later on about the specifics of my diet, but for now, note my use of the word healthier. Not healthy, but healthier. I still drink beer, I still order a pizza on the occassional Friday night that I don't feel like cooking, but for the most part, I try to keep it healthy.
On the subject of the title, I believe that healthier living is not just about how you eat, but also about physical activity. I am on a varisty athletic team at school(Division III), and so I was given a summer training regimen to follow. Thus, most of the posts on this blog will be about healthier eating, working out, saving money, or a combination of these things.