Here are Mackay’s six top rules for power dealing:
- Never accept a first offer, no matter how good it seems.
- Don’t negotiate with yourself. If your offer is rejected, wait for a counteroffer instead of making one yourself.
- If your opponent says he or she needs final approval on an agreement you’ve struck, remember one thing: You don’t have an agreement. Ask to negotiate directly with the person in command.
- If you can’t say “Yes,” say “No.” It’s better than “Maybe.”
- Don’t be cloyed by printed contracts you’re supposed to sign. Read them, mark them up, change them. Don’t succumb to thinking that an agreement in writing is set in stone.
- Learn everything you can about the other side. “Instincts are no match for information,” says Mackay.