How to be a smarter negotiator

Every time I enter a negotiation it feels like the first time. I can rehearse, prepare and strategize, but if I really want something or have any emotional stake in the deal, all the wisdom I think I’ve collected over the years starts jumbling together (For example, “Never start the money conversation,” mushes together with “Name your price first to make sure you’re negotiating from your number, not theirs.”)  And if negotiating requires a long waiting game, my impatience gets the best of me as all I want to do is get the deal sealed.

I decided to talk to a pro to see if I could improve my ways, so I rang up Jim Camp whose latest book, “No: The only Negotiating System You Need for Work and Home,” just landed on my desk. Camp is a seasoned negotiator and coach who has trained the FBI on how to negotiate in hostage situations, so I figured low-stakes negotiations like mine would be much easier to manage. {Read the rest at Yahoo!}


How to ask for help

For a long time, I had difficulty asking for help. I felt more comfortable on the giving side of things and feared that if I regularly asked others for help I’d take advantage of their kindness. Then I realized that most successful people know how and when to ask for help. And that most people are inclined to offer help when asked (research backs this up.)

So I started asking, and good things happened as a result of it. I got smart advice. I got support from others. And I probably made a lot of people feel good that I respected them enough to seek their counsel.

Every day I get at least one email or call asking for help with something — a request for an introduction, a recommendation, advice on how to find a job. Some of these requests are easy to answer, and in those cases, I respond quickly, either by doing the thing requested of me or explaining why I can’t. Others leave me frustrated with the questioner. And when I’m frustrated it’s usually for a variation of the same few reasons. The person didn’t ask a proper question; the person didn’t appear to have done any work to solve the problem on her own; or she was coming to me for something that I wasn’t really in a position to help with.

Based on these experiences, I’ve developed some guidelines for how I ask for help: {Read the rest at Yahoo!}


3 Easy Ways Email Can Jumpstart a Career

In addition to my usual career-related activities, I have been working overtime lately talking with friends, family members and colleagues who have recently lost their jobs or are concerned about where the job market and economy are going. I’ve decided to share some of the things I’m telling them with you, so that we can all join in on spreading good career karma.

We all love bitching about email, but when it comes to simple and free tools that can jumpstart a career, nothing beats it. Here’s three easy things you can do with email to help your career, or the career of someone you care about.
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