Many people early in their careers find self-advocacy awkward or may even perceive it as impossible. They don’t know what is reasonable for them to request or propose, they are unsure how to go about it, who their negotiating counterparts should be, or what they care about. Often for good reason, they hold back out of fear that speaking up will undermine important relationships. However, there are meaningful downsides to letting opportunities to self-advocate pass, even if only to learn more about what is possible. Negotiation attempts can backfire, but there are ways to prepare strategically to reduce that risk. This note was crafted to help people in early career or junior positions to analyze potential negotiation opportunities and to prepare for those opportunities in ways that make a clear case that what they are proposing makes good sense for others, as well as for themselves.
Through a four-step process, students will learn to prepare strategically to reduce the risk that negotiation will fail.