A couple of weeks ago, I was at an event, and a friend of mine was talking about her recent car-buying experience. “I hate all that haggling and negotiation,” she said.  “I hate the whole process!”

I, on the other hand, love buying cars, and furniture, and anything else that gives me a chance to flex my bargaining muscles. To me, it’s a challenge: I want to see how great a deal I can get.  I realize I’m sort of an anomaly in this. But most people don’t shy away from negotiations because they don’t want a better deal for themselves, but because something is holding them back from asking for what they need or deserve.

Whether you’re negotiating for a new car, a raise, a severance package, or even a new set of duties, you’ll be best served to come from a place of your own values.  Know your strengths, and use them to establish your position. Most of all, value yourself and your goals as much as you’d value those of your best friend, and remember that the only way you’re guaranteed NOT to get what you want is when you don’t ask for it.

Here’s a great example of negotiating from your values:

My client (we’ll call her Sue) had received an offer from a company, but it wasn’t the stellar offer she’d hoped for. She and I worked together to strategize her negotiation. We looked at the money aspect, but we also delved a little deeper to find out what other items were really important to her. We also did a little research about the person she would be negotiating with, in order to discover the best approach.

When Sue went in to present her counter-offer, she was solid in her positioning and strategy. She knew what she absolutely needed to achieve, and where she was willing to give a little. In the end, although she didn’t get a big jump in salary, she did receive a company gas card, a gym membership, and greater flexibility with her schedule—all things that coincided with her personal values.

Maybe you’re reading this and thinking, “That’s great and all, but if I ask for a raise in this economy, I might be next on the layoff list.” Or, maybe you’re thinking, “At least I HAVE a job: that’s more than some people can say.” That’s your fear talking. In all my years as a coach, and former recruiter, I’ve never known someone to get fired for asking for a raise. You have nothing to lose. If the company budget is a little tight, you can still negotiate for items that coincide with your values, but which don’t cost the company a lot of cash—like Sue’s gym membership, or the ability to work from home.

Here are some testimonials from clients who’ve worked with me to accomplish a successful negotiation.

”Coach DQ helped me to negotiate an 11% increase in salary and a 10% bonus!” C.F., Project Manager 

“I hadn’t had an increase in salary in 2 years and my boss wouldn’t budge.  With DQ’s help I negotiated a few perks, an extra week’s vacation, mileage and a gas card.” Lisa, Director of Client Services

“I hired DQ and within 4 months I landed my dream job making 50% more salary than I was making at my last job.” Jen
Watch a video (3:19) –

“Dawn taught me how to negotiate.  I was able to be confident, organized, and prepared for my annual review. I calmly and professionally negotiated myself a 12% increase in salary and benefits.”
Ariel, Operations Director

Recently one of my client’s lost his job after 14 years with the company. The new management was offering a ridiculously small severance package. Using the same techniques I’ve used with previous clients, we were able to increase his severance package by 450%, and he was able to extend his health care coverage.

So if you’re feeling stuck, or you haven’t yet discovered the art of negotiation, give me a call. I can help you turn your negotiating experience around, and create a career situation that’s aligned with your goals and core values.



As a certified professional coach, radio show host and workshop leader, Dawn helps sales, marketing, advertising and creative entrepreneurs to accelerate their career so they’ll love their life!

1 Comment

  1. z says:

    Great article, DQ! There’s gotta be tons of people that could use your help with this. And apparently it’s paid off already for many folks who leveraged your skills and experience.

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