Negotiation is not Weak

There comes a time in every relationship, when someone has to say they are sorry... I know that I share a lot about the ladies in Kenya. I even get wicked excited about new products and sometimes I may even share my discontent about the people who troll my posts and ads. There is no weakness in forgiveness and while I don't like the nasty comments, I chose to forgive those people and move on.

I must admit, I truly appreciate you hanging in with me and continuing to cheer on the ladies of Baskets and Beads and myself. I am here to continue to talk about fair trade principles, fun facts about Kenya, Swahili language learning and sometimes even negotiation strategies and so much more.

Just recently, I was able to share with The Women of Global Change some foundational principles behind how to Think Like A Negotiator and it made me realize that perhaps you too would like to know some inside negotiation secrets.

When you think like a negotiator you want to strive to create a win-win result when making an agreement. Everyone is going to give up something in the discussion. Know what you are willing to give up in the deal right from the start. You can do this best if you follow the 5 principles below:

1. Own your power- In a survey done by of 2,000 people, the survey found that only 13% of people are not apprehensive about negotiation. If you don't own your power, someone else will. Take the time to build your confidence and know your bottom line before you go into the discussion. Speak with authority and stand in your power.

2. Consider... Is the Negotiation Fair and Reasonable? Fair means a proper balance of conflicting interests, reasonable means not extreme or excessive. In negotiation, there is an inherent conflict. You want to create something that is fair and reasonable based on the party's perception of creating the deal and what the parties believe to be fair and reasonable. A win win result is when both sides agree the deal is good, fair and reasonable.

3. Prepare in Advance: You must know who is on the other side of the table before you are in the room. Outline what you want, what you are willing to do, and what you are willing to give up. Know when you are willing to walk away. Write down your strategy. Calculate your desired return of investment to mitigate your risk and stand up for it. You always have the power to walk away. Do a mock negotiation with a friend or colleague or practice your skills at a yard sale or thrift shop. Alexander Graham Bell said "Preparation is the Key to Success"

4. Ask for exactly what you want. Get your Asssk in gear. You have to ask for what you want. If you don't ask... you won't get it. People say no, 3 times before they say yes but remember you will miss 100 % of the shots you do not taken(Wayne Gretzky). Make a commitment to yourself and what you want. Move out of the comfort zone and do it. You change lives because you ASK for what you want and the impact you have ripples beyond you. Asking for exactly what I want got me to Kenya and started working with the women of Baskets and Beads. Had I not asked for donations to cover the expenses of the trip to Kenya, Baskets and Beads would not have been a reality and you would not be reading this now. Get your Ask in Gear and Ask for Exactly What You Want - Now!

5. Stop talking... If you can get comfortable with the discomfort of silence... it is one of the most powerful strategies you can use in negotiation. If you really want to own your power, learn how to leverage the power of the pause. The other side has to have time to process. Ask a question then wait for their response. If you talk over them, you might talk yourself out of the deal. A great question to ask.. "Is there any reason why you can't..."- phrase your questions to get the answer you want. A no to this question is actually a yes. It scrambles the brain and creates a pattern interrupt. Get them off the no... people want to say yes.

With all of this in mind... here is my ask:

"Is there any reason why you can't jump for joy with me, support the ladies and purchase a hand-crafted heart soapstone dish?"

Or how about a tree of life dish?

All you have to do is click here to see all of the amazing soapstone products that are available. We even have soapstone turtles!

Remember, showing faith (Imani) and being willing to offer forgiveness (msamaha) is never a sign of weakness.

Today, I ask for your continued faith as I once again shared the amazing creations from the artisans in Kenya and ask for your gracious support as we feed families, get kids into school and work to develop a sustainable international business model.


Eldonna Fernandez

P.S. Wanna know more about how the artisans of Kenya build their homes and about my other job... click here to read more.

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