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Stop Making These 5 Negotiation Mistakes: What You Need to Know

ai practice interviews negotiating compensation negotiating salary practice interviews ai Sep 26, 2023

Stop Making These 5 Negotiation Mistakes: What You Need to Know


You've seen them—those YouTube videos that boast the secret sauce to negotiating like a pro. But beware; not all advice is good advice. In fact, some of it can set you back in your quest for better terms, whether in your career or personal life. In this blog post, we'll dive into five negotiation mistakes you absolutely must avoid.

The Trap of Salary Range

It's tempting to provide a salary range when negotiating. After all, you want to appear flexible and accommodating. But here's the thing—psychological anchoring is real. When you offer a range, say between $80,000 and $100,000, your employer will naturally anchor to the lowest possible value. It's how our brains are wired. So what's the solution? Simple. Always present one number as your desired salary.

The Power of Specific Numbers

When choosing that one number, avoid rounded figures like $100,000. Instead, be specific—think $98,875. This tactic, drawn from negotiation expert Chris Voss' book "Never Split the Difference," confounds your counterpart and makes it look like you've meticulously calculated this amount down to the last dollar.

Language: Your Hidden Weakness

Pay attention to the language you use during negotiations. Phrases like "It would be great if," "If possible," or "I believe" can undermine your position. It's not about being rude or unkind; it's about being assertive. Use definitive language such as "My expectations are..." to demonstrate your confidence.

Why Email Negotiations Are a No-Go

Some might argue that negotiating via email is easier and less stressful. However, the power of persuasion cannot be understated in a face-to-face (or phone) conversation. In written format, things like tone get lost in translation. Moreover, email gives the other party too much time to think and craft their response. In-person negotiations keep them off guard and can lead to better outcomes.

Buying Signs: Benefits and Start Date

Discussing benefits and a start date before settling the compensation can be a grave error. These are "buying signs," indicating you're seriously considering the job offer. Hold off on these topics until you've reached an agreement on the compensation.

The Illusion of Future Money

The prospect of revisiting your salary in the future may seem appealing. However, it's a trap. At best, the company is agreeing to a future conversation—not an actual raise. If you're resorting to this strategy, it likely means your initial negotiation wasn't strong enough.


Negotiating is an art form that requires a strategic approach, backed by research and psychological insight. Avoid these common pitfalls to ensure you have the upper hand in any negotiation scenario. Remember, the aim is to strike a balance that benefits you without compromising your relationship with the other party.

For more resources visit my website - Practice Interviews and check out our AI Practice Interview App.

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