Is Negotiation at Work Risky?

Is negotiation at work RISKY? The short answer is - YES. As I share in my Tedx Talk, you have to be willing to walk away if you are ready to negotiate.

The longer answer is this - negotiating is a leadership skill, and if you exercise that skill and it’s met with resistance, anger, pushback or a flat out “no”, you learn more about the person/company you’re negotiating with than yourself.

I recommend to clients, in almost all situations, that they should negotiate, even if they receive an offer wilder than their craziest dream, because negotiating breaks the glass ceiling.  Negotiating is a leadership skill. Negotiating is self-advocacy on steroids.  Negotiating sets you up for success later as you grow your career within the organization. 

If you are met with resistance during the initial negotiation, how do you think it will go when you want a raise or promotion or more responsibility once you’ve been in the firm for 2 or 3 years? 

If you choose not to negotiate, you miss out on the opportunity to build a relationship with your potential new manager.  If you choose not to negotiate you’ll never know if you’re leaving money on the table. If you choose not to negotiate you’ll have a harder time advocating for  yourself once you’re on board because if you don’t speak up from the beginning, you’ll be afraid to “make waves” once you’ve joined. 

When you negotiate, you show your new boss that you own your worth.  Negotiating is an act of self-love. By negotiating, you let the people around you know that YOU KNOW how valuable you are and how lucky they are to be working with you. 

You have to be willing to walk away if you’re willing to negotiate.  And here’s why - if you own your worth, ask for what you want, and then accept an offer for a lesser value than you are bargaining for, you’re goin to feel as if you’ve caved.  You’re going to feel as if they’ve got you at a bargain. You’re going to lay the foundation for resentment and frustration to fester. You’re going to regret that you spoke up at all in the first place.  You’re going to take yourself less seriously and most likely will stop fighting for what you believe in once you join. 

If a company says “no” or rescinds a job offer because you’ve negotiated - thank them.  Thank them for showing you their true colors. Thank them for being honest with you about how they treat their employees.  Thank them for seeing that it would never be a good fit because you were unable to make an agreement.  

Then, go out there and negotiate your next job offer.  You are always worth it!


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