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Negotiation Strategies

10 May 2019

Natasha Feenan

We negotiate with ourselves every day! Salad or sandwich for lunch? One more episode of Netflix or that extra hour of sleep in the morning? Apply or don’t apply for that job? Brightwater's Natasha Feenan outlines the top 5 negotiation tips everyone needs to know in order to land that deam job!

Negotiation is not a word you would associate with everyday life but it’s something we do every day without even realising it. After a fantastic morning with Chamber of Commerce at their Connecting for Growth – Cross Border Networking event, (Managing Director of Acumensis) Aidan McGrath’s “Negotiation” workshop was a short but sweet talk about negotiating skills and it got me thinking about how this can relate to everything you do. It’s not just a business tool, we negotiate with ourselves every day.

Or more crucially,  apply or don’t apply for that job?

You see the vacancy on the job board or you get the alert email through to say there is a role suited to your preferences. Or you get a call from a recruiter like me who believes your CV matches what my client is looking for. What is the first thing you think? That you aren’t cut out for that industry? Or the step up is too much? Maybe you think that salary bracket is way out of your league and there is no point entertaining the idea.

It’s time to negotiate with yourself, negotiate with the employer, and negotiate with me! 5 great points I have taken away from Aidan’s workshop are the following that will help you regardless if you are having an internal argument with yourself or trying to convince someone you are worthy of the higher end of the salary scale;

  1. Aim High (realistically!) - Know your worth and know the value of the skills and qualities you can bring to the role. Understand your skills are transferable and your qualifications have meaning.On the other hand, be realistic about qualities you can better yourself at and figure out how that specific company can help.
  2. Don’t assume – Don’t assume you are not right for the role. Don’t assume the salary is out of your scope. Ask those questions, get those answers. Don’t convince yourself it is a no because that attitude will make it a no.
  3. Sell yourself – You need to believe in yourself before you can make others believe in you. Detail your accomplishments without being too cocky. Talk about your achievements and explain why you are proud of them. If you get to interview stage, show the employer that you would be an asset to their team. At this point don’t try to negotiate until you have really sold yourself as the top candidate!
  4. Enlarge the pie – talk about the future, tell them where you see yourself in 5/10/15 years’ time in their business. Explain how you can help develop the business and what you as an individual can bring to the table. Think outside the box and talk about what you can do to contribute to the organisation outside the bubble that is your department.
  5. Prepare, prepare, prepare! – Bit of a no brainer if you ask me! Failing to prepare is preparing to fail. If you come to the conclusion that the role isn’t right for you, be honest with yourself. Know what you are good at but more importantly be honest about where your weaknesses and figure it out quickly. Don’t convince yourself you are perfect for the role because it is two minutes away from home – you will be back to square one in 6 months reading through those job boards!

If after all this, you still struggle to negotiate salary, contracts or even if you’re trying to figure out if it is a good idea to apply at all, that’s where I step in as your consultant. It is my job to get the very best for both you and the employer. I’m here to see your potential and feed that information to the client. We build strong relationships with our candidates and clients and from this we can see potential employment matches away from the 3 pages of CV. It is our job to get the best for everyone and negotiate on your behalf. 

Natasha recruits for permanent roles in HR and Business Support over the whole of Northern Ireland. For more information on the HR and Business Support jobs market, please contact Natasha Feenan on 028 9032 5325  or n.feenan@brightwaterni.com