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Conquer Negotiation Anxiety: How to Negotiate Your Salary Even When you are Intimidated

Updated: Aug 22, 2023

Negotiating your salary can be scary, especially if the person you're negotiating with seems intimidating. But there is a simple method you can follow to negotiate for the compensation that you deserve.

Professionally dressed woman negotiating salary with a smile

The DISC Framework

Before we dive into the details, let's talk about the D.I.S.C. framework. It's one simple tool that can help you understand personality types and communication styles. It's not a one-size-fits-all solution, but it can help you customize your message so that your counterpart receives it loud and clear. There are many other tools like the Gallup and Myers-Briggs. We start with this one because it starts with just four categories - Dominant, Influence, Steady and Conscientious.

currency pile

The Dominant (or Intimidating) Communicator

For today's episode, we'll focus on the dominant type. They're all about results and achievements, and less about feelings and relationships. To get their attention, you have to talk in the language that works best with their personality – so focus on your successes and results.

Let's say you're applying for a project manager position and have received a job offer. You reviewed it and believe you deserve another $20,000 in base salary. If you've determined that the hiring manager you'll negotiate with is a dominant type of communicator, then you need to come up with a step-by-step plan that works best for this type of manager.

First of all, you need to identify and address any imposter thoughts you might have. It's normal to have self-doubt, nervousness, and questions such as "do I deserve to ask for more?" Acknowledge that this might be a possibility and normalize it. Say something to yourself such as "this is an important negotiation, so of course, I am nervous." Then start planning for your negotiation by thinking about your accomplishments and achievements – the things that you know are true of your skills and expertise.

Next, craft your pitch. Remember, a dominant communicator values results and accomplishments. So your pitch should focus on your results and accomplishments, and make sure that you provide specific metrics and data on each single claim. Instead of saying, "I delivered many successful projects," say, "I delivered project X three weeks ahead of schedule and under budget by 30%. Because of that launch, sales increased by 20% in the first three months of launch because we were able to take advantage of a competitor back-order."

Easy formula on how to negotiate your salary

Now, here's a fool-proof formula that you can use when negotiating your offer with the hiring manager:

  1. Start with a thank you. Be appreciative and thank them for the offer; Express enthusiasm. Let them know how excited you are about the opportunity.

  2. Provide your counteroffer. Be specific about what you want and why you deserve it. Use numbers to highlight results.

  3. Show evidence. Back up your counteroffer with specific examples of your accomplishments and results.

  4. Offer creative ways to get them to match your desired compensation.

  5. Close the deal. Once you've agreed on a new salary, make sure to get it in writing and follow up with a thank you note.

Lastly, deep breathing can help you negotiate better. Taking a few deep breaths before the negotiation can help you calm your nerves and stay focused. This is based on scientific discovery based on a recent study which you can find here.

And there you have it, a script and a formula to showcase how to negotiate your salary like a pro.

Don't let anxiety force you to negotiate against yourself. Trust the process and trust yourself.

You can do this!

How to Negotiate Even When you Are Intimidated - Episode 103
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