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  • Writer's pictureWTS Sacramento

Winter 2020 Professional Development Recap

On the evening of December 9th, 2020, WTS Sacramento welcomed Maisha Hagan, owner of Beauty & the Boss, a professional development and career coaching service, who gave a presentation on the Art of Influence and Negotiation. How can you use influence and negotiation you ask? There are many instances where being able to negotiate effectively can win outcomes for yourself such as: during annual employee reviews, for personal purchases (vehicles, real estate, etc.), scope and fee decisions, and setting expectations between team members.

The six principles of influence Maisha discussed in detail came from Robert Cialdini’s book “Pre-Suasion: A Revolutionary Way to Influence and Persuade.” These principles include 1) Reciprocity, 2) Authority, 3) Social Proof, 4) Liking, 5) Commitment and Consistent and 6) Scarcity. Knowing about these principles can assist in increasing your influence. For Authority, others can be influenced by visually seeing your credentials and your area of expertise. Liking? Try and build common ground and find an area where everyone can agree. And for Scarcity, remember that you are rare and unique, don’t devalue yourself!

For Maisha, there are three clear steps to negotiating: preparing for the ask / setting a framework / timing and time. Planning and preparing for what you want is important, it helps you determine exactly what you want the answer “yes” to be to. Do you want a higher salary? A specific project assignment? Education or training? There are many questions to ask yourself to prepare before negotiating. Some of these questions include: What is your unique, distinct competitive advantage? How does what you want, fit within corporate values or policies? Know the details of what you’re asking for: fees/rates, access, commonalities to past events, etc. And lastly, practice, practice, practice! (with the outcome of “yes”) You don’t need to take on a different personality to negotiate, practice and develop a style that fits with your personality.

Setting a framework before going into a negotiation helps gain confidence. Maisha’s first step is to set a “solution criteria” chart. Set the columns to be the criteria that you want to be met with the rows being ideas and possible solutions for the best outcome. Second, like in Stephen Covey’s book “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People,” think win/win, a “paradigm that there is plenty for everybody, that one person’s success is not achieved at the expense or exclusion of the success of others.” This framework ideology is that the conversation will be cooperative, not competitive. Third step for setting a framework is to begin “wishing,” start high then negotiate lower.

The last topic discussed was the importance on Timing and Time (yes, they are different). Timing is a tactic, in determining when to start a conversation and when, within a conversation, the “ask” should be made. Time, within the context of negotiations, is a tool. Some instances, additional time to process information or a conversation is important to have for both sides of the negotiation. Learning how to use time for silence in a conversation may be useful as well.

Don’t be discouraged if “yes” doesn’t happen right away. Remember to practice influence and negotiating skills and don’t give up. Thank you Maisha for your high level of energy and inspiring others to reach for what they want! If you want to find out more about Maisha and Beauty & The Boss, you can go to her webpage at:

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