Getting Past No

Getting Past No: Negotiating Your Way from Confrontation to CooperationGetting Past No: Negotiating Your Way from Confrontation to Cooperation Book Cover Getting Past No: Negotiating Your Way from Confrontation to CooperationGetting Past No: Negotiating Your Way from Confrontation to Cooperation
William Ury
Random House Inc

This book is now my favorite negotiations book, not only does it give a clear framework of what to do when you encounter opposition in a negotiation it also enlightens the reader on the benefits of negotiation. This is a much more enjoyable book than Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In, but reading Getting to Yes is essential but not required.
If you seem to come to negotiation circumstances and feel that you did poorly or caved in, then you need to read this book. If you feel cheated or unable to articulate a response to an argument,then you need to read this book. If you want to take a negotiations class and you think your are not good, then you need to read this book.

Say YES to the Offer


So you have yourself an offer, maybe even a few, so which is YOUR offer.  TLC has a show called “Say Yes to the Dress,” and if you have a woman in your life you  have seen it.  So in the show they tell the bride that all their dreams will begin to come true as soon as they find THE Dress.  To find the dress they have to try a few on and then they’ll KNOW if is THE dress.  The show also goes into a few basics and that is what I want to address today.

Know Your Budget

This includes 2 things, first how much money you need, second how much you can get.  If you are 35, married and with 3 kids your needs are different than if you are single in your 20’s.  So how much can you get, well weigh in your experience in the field and the resources you have available.  Know that there will be positions that will have higher salaries by their own nature and there isn’t anything to negotiate.  Know if you have limitations, you can’t expect to get paid a premium if you decided that you don’t want to relocate and want less travel.  So understand all the other things that have led to the number on that paper.

Look for what you like, you can do alterations on the small things

When you first see the offer you will probably look for 3 things:

  1. Salary
  2. Signing Bonus
  3. Variable Compensation

We all want to see that 6 figure number in the salary and a good compensation and a double digit percentage on the Variable Comp.  The thing is, those 3 things are the things that you can do alterations on; the other things on that paper might have more weight and less leeway.  Here are some:

  1. Title, were you expecting Manager and got Analyst? or Assistant?
  2. Salary Grade, does your salary grade represent the seniority that you expect? How soon can you change?
  3. Location, YES it matters? Is the cost of living comparable to the salary? Will you be happy there? Does it fit with family? lifestyle? social?
  4. Manager, Do you know the manager? Will he/she help you or sink you?
  5. Relocation, Does the relocation outweigh the location? Will it be adequate to move the family
  6. The OTHER benefits:
    1. Health Insurance: For some this might mean everything
    2. Pension, Savings, Retirement Plans: Are you getting free money? Are you interested?
    3. Perks: Parking, a Car, tuition, Options, Stock, etc

So see the total package, compare on all levels other offers.  What can be changed, what cannot.  Total dollar value might be very similar, but what are the things that are most important to you? On the things that matter most, which one do you like best?  If you find something you don’t like, put on your negotiation hat and see if you can fix it.

Picture yourself in it

So you can’t put on the offer, but picture yourself with that offer.  Can you see yourself driving in Austin or Minneapolis. Do you want to see the seasons or just hot and humid? Make a budget with the salary and see if you could live with that money.

Get an opinion, but you make the decision

You like to get an opinion, do it. Go talk to someone, maybe a mentor or you dad.  Some like to talk to a professor or career counseling to find out if the job is right.  What ever you do, don’t let them make the decision for you. The decision is yours, and yours alone.  I know, you have a spouse and I would involve them in everything and the decision is together, but I’m not talking about how to run your marriage.  What I want to make clear is that your friend will not have to live with your decision, and most opinions will be based on the numbers on the paper and not with your feelings about the location, your manager and your 45minute commute.  So be a big boy/girl and decide for yourself.

Finally, YOU have to LOVE it

Again as the wedding dress you have to fall in love with the offer.  You need to feel like that offer was meant for you.  Will the offer be perfect, probably not, but it needs to be perfect for YOU NOW.  Now you can send your acceptance letter and start focusing on your job.

International Marketing


This semester I’m taking a class called “International Marketing.” It is a requirement so that I can graduate with a certificate in Global Management.  The course feels very open and flexible, and the professor seems to be taking a more open approach to the course itself.  So this got me thinking about, what should a course in International Marketing have.  For me, these would be the learning outcomes:

  1. Effectively create marketing strategy decisions that will consider the global landscape
  2. Provide arguments for and against marketing decisions that cross borders
  3. Build a framework by which to measure risk of cross border marketing plans
  4. Have knowledge of how to structure global teams and how to measure them

Wikipedia defines International Marketing as:

International marketing (IM) or global marketing refers to marketing carried out by companies overseas or across national borderlines. This strategy uses an extension of the techniques used in the home country of a firm. It refers to the firm-level marketing practices across the border including market identification and targeting, entry mode selection, marketing mix, and strategic decisions to compete in international markets. According to the American Marketing Association (AMA) “international marketing is the multinational process of planning and executing the conception, pricing, promotion and distribution of ideas, goods, and services to create exchanges that satisfy individual and organizational objectives.” In contrast to the definition of marketing only the word multinational has been added. In simple words international marketing is the application of marketing principles to across national boundaries.

So in essence you 2 things, (1) knowledge of your home country and (2) knowledge of the foreign country.  I have worked and traveled in several countries, and just knowing a different country and culture does help you understand the intricacies of a country and allows you to compare and contrast things that will and will not work.  Knowing a second language multiplies that knowledge.  In my case, I speak Spanish and English, and have worked in 8 countries and traveled to others, but I want to learn a way to translate this knowledge into a framework to understand other cultures and markets.  I think that the short answer I will find this semester is no, there is no framework.

A similar discipline to marketing is that of negotiation, in a way marketing is a negotiation, some very active like a rep visiting a client overseas, but mostly passive, like a commercial or a logo.  In the book “Negotiating Globally” the author Jeanne Brett goes deep into culture as the basis for thinking globally.  She compares culture to an iceberg and structures 3 distinct layers, the first being the only one we can see (p. 28).  Here are the layers:

  1. Behaviors and institutions
  2. Knowledge structures: Values, beliefs, and norms
  3. Fundamental assumptions

I want to have a framework that takes a marketing strategy and is able to break it down into:

  • Which behaviors and institutions does this plan relay on
  • What are the core values, beliefs and norms? Are they the same in all targets? How should we account for the differences?
  • Lastly, Is our product/service/offering go against any fundamental assumption?

In thinking about his, I think on the examples of products that are launched in markets that have no need for them.  Or just lost in translation blunders (here are some)There was probably some executive that said: “we’ll create the demand.” There are other products that would seem no need for them, or have had poor reception in other markets and seem all the craze in others.  Is there a way to x-ray the marketing plan in order to extract this knowledge?

I really want to find a way, maybe I will this semester or maybe I’ll just read old cases that shed no light on the subject.  As always, the burden is on me to come up with the learning I want.