Salary Negotiation – 7 Tips on How to Express Yourself and Present Your Case

1. Know your content.

Simply put, be well-prepared! It is the mastery of your subject matter which gets you through any speaking engagement with flying colours.

When you meet to negotiate a salary increase, it is public speaking in smaller quarters like an office or a conference room, but it is no less important. In fact, it is very crucial to you because the improvement of your finances and standard of living rest on it.

2. Start on the high side.

You can never go wrong with a strong beginning. Your choice of words and the fluency with which you express your initial thoughts set the tone for the meeting.

Make a good first impression! The best way to start on the positive side would be to thank all of those present for the privilege of their time.

3. Speak with passion.

When you speak with passion, it should spring not from overconfidence and aggressiveness but rather from your own personal pride and honour to be part of this meeting. Passion is as simple as saying what you believe and believing in what you say.

But no matter how passionate the discussion gets, keep your voice warm and modulated and your temper low and even.

4. Be specific.

Go straight to the point. Don’t waste anyone’s time by talking in a useless, roundabout manner. It only implies that you don’t know what you’re going to say next.

Since you know your content, talk on its specific points and highlights. If you don’t trust your memory, be prepared with a small notepad or cue card to guide you.

5. Listen carefully.

Once you’ve been heard, it’s your turn to stop talking and start listening. Listen carefully to what your boss and officers have to say.

Give them your full attention! Be quick to pick up and take your cue from open-ended questions which require a spontaneous answer. Give critical questions some thought before you verbalize a good reply.

6. Keep an open mind.

Always let intellect and reason prevail over your emotions. If you lay all your needs and wants in one sitting, you leave yourself vulnerable.

Besides, the more open your mind is, the stronger your heart will be.

7. Prepare for objections.

Have the heart to face objections, and do not immediately worry or panic. There is no point in getting all defensive. It is but natural for your superiors to examine and question your request, because this is how they gauge how driven yet composed you are.

Your best defence to any resistance on your request for a salary increase would be to finish off on the right note. Be courteous and appreciative of the time and opportunity given.

When you present your case for a salary increase, you must put your best foot forward! To maintain the meeting all throughout, start with a strong beginning, fill the discussion with good content, and end with a clean finish.

Change Your Putting Philosophy So You Can Stay in the Present, the Zone, and Hole More Putts

If you have read more than one article on playing your best then you will have heard time and time again about forgetting about results and staying in the present. Doing it in real play, especially when you are emotionally tied in with the result is not all that easy to do. One of the worst emotions you can be tied to with a result is humiliation. If you are worried about missing a short one or three stabbing from 20ft and losing the hole or match, humiliating yourself in the process, then you are placing enormous pressure to perform on yourself. No wonder we struggle.

Forget the results is the advice and it makes perfect sense as I am sure you agree. After all we do perform better if we are not scared of messing up. There is also a lot of advice about how to stay in the present but it is about finding the right thoughts and processes that suit you as an individual. Not all the techniques will work all the time for all the people, kind of thing!

Now I do not know if this particular thought process and philosophy is going to work really well for you but here is something you can try and if you give it a serious go for a few weeks and months, it might just improve your putting fantastically. Here it is and remember that this is just a model that may work for you.

Become fascinated by the personal challenge of every putt. Forget about the game or match, let it go and allow the most important thing about your putting to become a game that you play with yourself. A game which you play out of interest to see what happens. The philosophy you want to have with this is that there is no score on the putt. The putt is not worth one shot. It is worth nothing and the only reason you are going to make this putt is to see how good your read of the line and break was and how good you “Just Let it Go” and trusted.

Imagine that you are on a practice green and just trying to see if you can get a putt to do what you think it should. Just a little practice challenge where there is no shot on the line. All you are going to do is imagine the putt and then send the ball on its way and see out of interest what happens.

Look at it from behind the ball and then walk to the other side and look at it from there. Stand side on to your putt on the low side of the hole and visualise your putt going along a line into the hole. Stand behind your putt again and visualise it running along a line and going into the hole and just trust your unconscious mind to come up with the line and pace. DO NOT SECOND GUESS ANYTHING.

Now just go through your setup routine, look at the hole one last time and then stroke the putt.

As you putt try to notice the back of the ball being struck by your putter and hold the image of your target in your mind, count to 3 seconds before looking sideways to see your putt rolling. Now just notice with interest how closely it is doing what you imagined it was going to do. No emotions, no good or bad, just compare the actual putt with what you visualised it doing. You are going to become completely absorbed at putting in order to see how close your actual putt is compared to what your instincts decided.

Putting is: Make an instinctive decision. Roll the putt without trying. Compare the real putt with the visualised putt. Learn and forget it. Repeat the process. Remember that there is no score. The putt is not worth 1 shot, it is simply an act of sending a ball from point A to point B and accepting the personal challenge to see if you can read the break and get the ball to do what you imagined.

In order for this particular putting system to show its magic and work you must treat it as a philosophy that each putt is just a personal challenge to see how good you can read a putt and then let it go. There is no such thing as a good putt or a bad putt; there is just a movement of the ball from one point to another that you can compare with your original decision. If it was a good comparison store it and congratulate yourself and if the actual putt was not the same as you imagined then just learn from it and forget it.

Now I do not know if this putting philosophy is going to work for you and improve your putting significantly, or just let you play with more freedom from results, but I hope you are one of those golfers who benefit significantly. By all means adjust some of the aspects so it fits you better and you can get out of results and just take each putt as a personal and interesting challenge.

How To Grab And Keep Audience Attention During A Presentation

One of the most important challenges for a presenter is first grabbing and then keeping the attention of an audience. If the presenter is unable to do this, the presentation might not succeed, no matter how valuable the content might be. When a presenter is waiting for his turn and slyly looks over the crowd before having to step in, panic tends to overwhelm. This is a familiar feeling for many.

Audiences might seem intimidating or too chaotic at first but there are ways to grab and keep their attention. We must remember here that grabbing their attention is not enough. We must hold their attention during the entire length of our presentation. Many speakers try to grab attention in numerous ways, e.g. by telling the latest joke or by making a flamboyant entry. This can grab attention but does not establish relevance, so after some time people might wander away or fall off.

This kind of attention grabbing trick, which is not actually relevant to the topic or theme of the presentation, may be effective in grabbing attention for the presenter momentarily, but then people see these as tricks and seldom remember the actual presentation or the message it had for them. Jumping on the table or landing on the stage from a helicopter would definitely catch the audience, but if your presentation is not as flamboyant and gripping the effect wears off quickly.

Here are some of the most commonly used methods for successfully getting and keeping audience attention.

1. Asking a question.

You can ask a rhetorical question or something that involves everyone by getting him or her to think about the topic.

  • How many of you in this room have hated filling up tax returns?
  • How many of you drive a German car?
  • Are our competitors driving us out of the market?

You can wait a short time after the question to get some information about your audience, but don’t wait too long as members of the audience feel stupid if no one knows the answer. Avoid open-ended questions and ask only questions that can be answered with a simple yes or no unless you are confident in skilfully using such questions. If you ask too general questions like “What is the purpose of life?” people might form an impression that your presentation is very general.

2.State an impressive fact.

Begin with a shocking, unusual or impressive fact connected to the theme of your presentation.

  • We are going to be out of business in six months if we allow our competitors to outrun us like this.
  • The demand in the market has doubled in the last three years and our market share has risen by only 1%.

3. Tell a story.

Telling a personal story closely connected to the theme of your presentation is a great way to begin. People usually like to hear personal stories, which are not too long or try to glorify the narrator too much.

Example:

Dear colleagues, before I begin I would like to tell you a short story about how our service got its name. Don’t worry, it’s not too long“.

A Tale from India

Three fish lived in a pond. One was named Plan Ahead, another was Think Fast, and the third was named Wait and See. One day they heard a fisherman say that he was going to cast his net in their pond the next day. Plan Ahead said, “I’m swimming down the river tonight! Think Fast said, “I’m sure I’ll come up with a plan.” Wait and See lazily said, “I just can’t think about it now!” When the fisherman cast his nets, Plan Ahead was long gone. But Think Fast and Wait and See were caught! Think Fast quickly rolled his belly up and pretended to be dead. “Oh, this fish is no good!” said the fisherman, and threw him safely back into the water. But, Wait and See ended up in the fish market. That is why they say, “In times of danger, when the net is cast, plan ahead or plan to think fast!

4. Cite a quotation.

Quotations are much used for presentations and they add a colourful touch to your personal style.

A short saying often contains much wisdom.” Sophocles (496 BC – 406 BC)

No culture can live, if it attempts to be exclusive.”

Mahatma Gandhi

Though they may be impressive, quotations do not have much shock-value and could be forgotten quickly. So they should be augmented by other methods of gaining audience attention. Remember also that use quotations sparingly. If you use too many quotations, people start to think that you have nothing original to say as you’re always borrowing other people’s sayings.

5. Narrate a joke.

Jokes are wonderful for relaxing the audience and setting a cheerful mood. Relaxed audiences tend to be more interactive. This might make the presenters work somewhat easier.

The joke must be appropriate. People have very different senses of humor and you have to be very careful with jokes. What might produce rolls of laughter from one audience might cause stunned silence in another.

Experiment with the joke first with people you know to check how it works and if poor language skills hinder understanding of the joke. It is very embarrassing if you are the only one who gets the joke and no one can laugh for the right reason. Some jokes to avoid are sexual, religious, ethnic and political issues as people are very sensitive in these areas.

One thing to be careful about is the cultural relativity of humor. In many cultures the locals crack jokes about many things and everybody rolls in laughter, but the moment a person from another culture or overseas head office makes the same joke, it can cease to be a joke and become a cultural affront.

6. Go among the audience.

Presenters usually keep to the area in front, near the laptop or the transparency projector. This creates a comfort zone for many people in the audience. Some courageous presenters disturb this comfort zone of the audience by walking closer or going absolutely to one side. Then the primitive instincts of the people in their comfort zone start waking them up. “The presenter is so close and next he’ll even ask me something, so I better be alert“.

Attention-grabbing skills are important for establishing relevance to your audience. Most of the people in the audience are often not mentally present or with you when you begin to speak. Even if they are physically present there and are trying to look interested, in reality, they are in their own worlds. They are thinking about work matters, planning the rest of their day, thinking about a problem of their own or just daydreaming. You have to bring them into your world and get them interested in your subject.

Attention-grabbing skills are your tool for helping the audience tune in to your subject. These skills for grabbing audience attention is not about your ego, you’re just helping them to tune in. When you have something worthwhile saying, and your audience feel that you’re actually guiding them and helping them focus on your topic, they will appreciate this and reward you with eager attention and active participation. Then at the end you will feel elated as they clap to show their appreciation.

The best place to keep a presentation is a prison; they already have a captive audience.

Enjoy your presentations!