I sometimes read my horoscope.
The reason why may surprise you.
First of all, astrologers have a certain genius for writing one sentence that can be interpreted as any color in the rainbow of human experience, from
Happy to "Help meeee!"
Spanning "Money is no object" to "Can I get a payday loan?" to
Millions of followers or not even one 👍🏼
“The future of your business interests, house, finances, apartment, charity, company, security or lifestyle is being mapped out now, in a small but important way.” What does that mean?
You have to give it meaning, and that reveals a lot about what matters to you in your life at a given moment. Scanning the news last week, I happened upon an article offering my Chinese Lunar New Year horoscope (for free) from a "great astrologer!"
“What the hell?” I thought, “It’s gotta be more upbeat than the news.” It offered …
“You might be more prone to accidents in the Year of the Rat.”
Here's the weird part.
It went on to advise I could stave off an accident by arranging a “mini-bloodshed” (A what!??!!!!)
And that could be achieved by "going to the dentist" or "donating blood." A “mini-bloodshed”?!? Sounds like a Vampire Expressway rest stop.
This fortune teller's advice to "take my pain now" reminded me of a conversation with a colleague back when I worked lived Amsterdam.
Sitting in a canal house, drinking good Dutch coffee (they have amazing coffee) looking out on the Keizersgracht canal. We were talking about work.
He mentioned he was underpaid. (It can happen to anyone.) And went on to share his plan to address it:
Work hard, be the office “rockstar”, and then, he said, “They’ll make it up to me.”
I can remember thinking, “Oh, honey... they so will not. Should I tell him that's never going to happen?” I wondered.
This is the career version of "take your pain" now in hopes they'll "make it up to you" later. Young, inexperienced and underpaid as I once was, that same "plan" had been a way for me to avoid a conversation I didn’t know how to handle, would be awkward and likely fail.
Working "hard" and "hoping" they notice made doing nothing seem like I was doing ‘something.’
You might be able to go to the dentist in January to avoid a root canal in July, but respect is the only thing you stave off by allowing the “underpaid now, but they’ll make it up to me later” situation to settle in. Please don't!
Here's something I bet you never thought about.
The big scary monster most people are actually avoiding here one that's 100% learnable. Simple negotiation.
100% learnable. Same as reading, riding a bike or playing cards.
Here are three steps to a better strategy and a bigger fortune.
1. If you're underpaid, the worst thing you can do is wait for them to address or correct it. Take action now.
If the idea of doing that brings on panic mode or sends you searching for any excuse not to, it's almost certainly because you aren't sure what to say or do.
Note: that's not your fault. You were probably never taught.
Here's the good news! You can learn and it's not hard. It just seems hard.
2. Your big enemy here is time. See, in negotiation, there's a thing called and "Anchor." ⚓️
That's the too-low salary that's bugging you now or the low-ball offer or too meager benefits package in the future.
There's a saying about "Anchors." It's this:
"The longer it sits the heavier it gets"
Which means the longer you let a too low salary or a low-ball offer stay that way, the heavier it gets, and the harder it is to change it.
3. In less time than it takes you to listen to an audio book, you can learn to comfortably negotiate better new arrangements and improve the ones you didn't negotiate at all.
Goodbye to being at mercy of your employer's good will and praying the next pay hike will be a kind of hallelujah-chorus-meets-the-Powerball-lottery of payback raises. (Spoiler alert: it won't.)
Fact: you don’t need to be negative, threatening or rude to negotiate well and get exactly what you want. That's Godfather movie stuff. (I love them!!) It's not real life.
You only have to learn a few things. So much hangs in the balance of something so easy to learn is why I made one of the Job Hunt School bonuses all about negotiation - how to do it easily without feeling like you're being a jerk or defusing a bomb.
If you're one of those lucky people who learned to negotiate from your car salesman mom or flea market savvy bargainer dad, you may already be set.
If you didn't get those skills, don't beat yourself up over it and more importantly don't lose another dime. Learn this stuff!
If you want to create some of your own luck in 2020, check out Job Hunt School. Ciao! Court.
Want more? Grab my 12 Top Strategies & Actions and get started today.