When I first heard this Americanism I was confused. Who is leaving money on the table and why? Also where is this table exactly? I've got GPS….
For those of you who haven't heard of this term yet, it means that you're not getting the money you could be getting. It often refers to negotiations in finance, employment or careers. It's a term originally used in poker and refers to making a dumb move "You're leaving your money on the (literal) table."
For the sake of this post though I want to talk about negotiating as it pertains to bloggers and careerists ( is that a word? NM, I've made it one!).
I've been indecently proposed to. Several times. By brands. And other bloggers.
We at Brand X are great fans of your blog. Would you like to work with us? For free? Also you have to buy our product yourself? Oh, and you get to come to our events, at your own cost! Yay, we're super excited about working with you!
My inbox has been full of these lately. My reaction is always the same:
Which leads me to two conclusions:
- This must have worked before or they wouldn't bother sending the email.
- There are bloggers out there, leaving their money on the dayum table!
First off, if you're a blogger with confidence in yourself and your content, then you have to know you're more valuable than that right? If you don't you need to find your kahunas and perhaps take a self – confidence course or something because that's whack! *Shameless plug: May I suggest my little free e- course on The Art of Personal Branding?
Secondly, you're doing all of us a disservice by accepting such shitty offers. How are the rest of us going to get ahead if you accept such an offer? I get that times are hard but what are getting for your effort? Not even so much as a by – your – leave. I work for money or products. Nothing else. Make this your motto.
Finally, what are you telling your readers? That you can be bought for the price of an email to promote something that maybe is not what they have come to know you for. At least insist on something for them. Is it worth their time to read your blog if you're promoting something that may not vibe with your blog just because some PR chick sent you an email? Feels like a sell out to me. Kind of like buying followers, but that's another post entirely. *Wink!
The blogging world is small and getting smaller. You will become known for taking anything and everything. That is not something you want out there , tarnishing your work and your brand. Don't leave any of that money on the table, don't do it chile!
We've all been there: broke, a joke and a love life that's DOA.
When it comes to relationships, however, we have a list of do's and don'ts as long as our arm.
- He must be tall.
- He must be educated.
- He must be handsome.
- He must be kind.
- He must be intelligent….
I could go on. How many of us have a list of requirements for a career? A list of things prospective employers have to meet before we'll consider a job? I know things can be tough without a paycheck, but have you considered that by accepting The Right Now Job you're closing the door to The Right Job? See what I did there?
It's like this, yes, you need a job, but you can't spend 8 hours a day working someone else's dream. You have to be able to see long-term growth in a company. A company that offers you less than you're worth is doing so because they know you won't negotiate. Listen, if they're advertising, they need you too. And chances are, you'll be remembered for being the one person that wanted to negotiate.
So, how to negotiate?
One rule has stood me in good stead. Go as high as is reasonably possible! If they offer 10, say you'll accept 20. Now you've established the parameters. The lowest you'll accept is 10 the highest you'll ask for is 20.
Don't let them say it's non negotiable. EVERYTHING is negotiable. A quick Oprah-ism ( I can't stand her, but just this once, I agree with her!) "Don't take a no from someone not in a position to give you a no." Go over heads, egos can be massaged after you got the job.
Sing your own praises but also know what you bring to the table. Make them understand you know your stuff. Be likeable. Being an A- grade asshole with an attitude is not going to help. Now is not the time to be full off it. Be likeable, but firm.
Make sure you let them know you're serious. Do your research and show them you know how the company operates and how exactly getting you will benefit them. It's a negotiation, not a hostage situation.
The best advice I ever got online regarding negotiations was here. Make sure you read up and practice your stance. The worse thing that could happen is that you settle for the offer only to later find out someone else got way more. It happens. Don't leave the money on the table!
At the end of the day it comes down to recognizing your worth. Undervaluing yourself is no good. People respond well to confidence. And confidence coupled with know – how and healthy levels of charm, are a winning combo.
Until next I blog,