You Can Negotiate Anything, Anywhere, Anytime

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

How to Negotiate During the Holidays

Ever notice that when you get together with your family for the holidays that the same arguments and resentments bubble up through the good cheer year after year. Despite your best efforts not to let your siblings' comments bother you, you end up playing the same role in your family that you had in junior high. Here are some tips for getting along with your family this holiday season. 

1. Concentrate on having a great holiday and don't get distracted by your emotions.

During this stressful holiday season, it is important to check your emotions at the door. Emotions such as anger or resentments lead to lack of control. You need to get past this stage if you are going to have a happy holiday. If you are the one who is angry or upset, you need to concentrate on what you what to accomplish (such as no scenes or confrontations) and not let anything stand in your way. It does not matter if you don't like a member of your family. Even if someone is rude, insulting, or even baiting you, don't give him or her the satisfaction that he or she has gotten to you.

2. Look Forward Not Back. The Past Is Called The Past For A Reason.

Don't try to settle old scores during the holidays. Remember your goal is to get through the holidays without any flare-ups. Even if one of your siblings did something to you in the past that still makes you mad, get beyond that and try to live in the moment and be happy. No matter how sophisticated and worldly we have become, somehow those same roles we had in high school show through and the same old pecking order manifests itself. In this situation, déjà vu is not a good thing.

3. Be Willing To apologize.

If you are estranged from a relative, maybe this is the year you will make the first move to reconcile. Be prepared to shoulder some of the blame even if you don't remember what the original argument was. Don't say, "I did not do anything wrong." or "It is against my principles to apologize!" That is beside the point. When considering whether to make the first move, keep in mind that people do make mistakes. Also consider that your first move may be rejected and don't be upset by that. At least you know that you made the effort and tried to take the high ground. A sincere apology, and I mean sincere, can go a long way.

4. Beware And Be Aware.

Be aware and don't let your guard down. Even if you think the holidays are going smoothly, don't be lulled into complacency. Be careful what you say and how you say it. One well-placed comment or zinger by you or someone else can spoil the whole holiday mood. Be alert to others' feelings. It is only a couple of days and you can get through it.

5.Be Thankful.

Be thankful for being able to share the holidays with your family. Remember that some of them may not be around next year or the year after and those very maddening habits you dislike now, you might even miss when they are gone. Try to remember all the good things and accentuate the positive. As my mother says, "If you can't say something nice, don't say something at all." Try saying something nice and see where it takes you. Happy Holidays.

Mary Greenwood, Mediator, Attorney and Author of How To Negotiate LIke A Pro: 41 Rules for Resolving Disputes, Winner of six book awards Best How To Book, DIY Festival Runner Up, New York Book Festival, E-Book and Self-Help Category Finalist ForeWord Magazine Book of the Year Awards Finalist, Best National Book Awards, Self-Help Category Honorable Mention, London Book Festival How To Mediate Like A Pro: 42 Rules for Mediating Disputes Winner of five book awards Best National Book AWard, Law Category Best E-Book, New York Book Festival Best How To Book, Beach Book Festival Best E-Book, Indie Excellence Awards Spirit AWard, South Florida Writers Association Email: howtonegotiate@aol.com www.marygreenwood.com

Saturday, November 9, 2013

When Not to Negotiate Like a Pro

Sometimes it is better not to negotiate

Although I am an advocate for negotiations any time, anywhere, any how, there are times when negotiation is not appropriate. Here are four circumstances when I simply do not negotiate.

1. I Don't negotiate With friends.
I am not talking about negotiating about movies or restaurants where you pick the restaurant today and I pick one tomorrow. What I am talking about is money. For example, if I am buying something from a friend and it is a fair price, I am inclined to pay the asking price without haggling. I find that that not negotiating is better for the friendship and is worth far more than the few dollars I might have saved. If asked why, I say, "I don't negotiate with friends!" Sometimes, I will say, that's non-negotiable. Friendship is more important than negotiations.
2. I don't negotiate when the price is already ridiculously low.
If an item is a dollar or fifty cents and everyone knows it is priced to sell and worth much more, I think it is insulting to negotiate with a quarter or something lower. When that happens, I make a decision that I am not going to negotiate.
3. I don't negotiate when the salary or offer is ridiculously high.
My general philosophy is to always negotiate salary because if they want you, there is usually money on the table. However, once I was offered a salary that was much higher than I expected in my wildest dreams. I did say I wanted to think about it overnight, but I did take the advice of a relative who suggested I accept the offer before they took the offer off the table. I violated my own rule but was glad I did not negotiate under the circumstances. If it is too good to be true, accept right away.
4. I don't negotiate when the money is for charity.
When I am attending an event where all the proceeds are for a charity, I usually don't negotiate since it is for a good cause. My philosophy is that a lot of people are volunteering their time to make money for their favorite charity and my job as a consumer is to help them meet their goal. It is not my job to try to get the lowest price. I want the charity to make some money.
Even when you do not negotiate, you are still negotiating like a pro.

Mary Greenwood, www.MaryGreenwood.org

Author of How to Negotiate Like a Pro, winner of 9 book awards, How to Mediate Like a Pro, winner of 12 book awards, and How to Interview Like a Pro, winner of 13 book awards.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Alzheimer's Fundraising Event. I will donate to Alzheimer's Association full amount of any sales of my books until October 18.

We had a local fundraising Alzheimer's event in Palm Coast, Florida this week. See my Mom, Peggy Greenwood, on the left and Paula Felici's mother, on the left. Paula is the owner of Le Belle Cose Gallery and Boutique. Both of our Mothers have been affected by Alzheimer's Disease.

Now I am expanding the effort to anyone who buys any of my books, How to Negotiate Like a Pro, How to Mediate Like a Pro, or How to Interview Like a Pro on Amazon, Kindle, Barnes and Noble or any other outlet. Send me the receipt, and I will send the equivalent amount to the Alzheimer's Association. Send to Facebook, LinkedIn or to my email Mgreen464@aol.com. This offer will remain in effect until Friday October 25, 2013. Thanks and together we can make a difference.

Mary Greenwood, Mediator, Attorney and Author of How To Negotiate LIke A Pro: 41 Rules for Resolving Disputes, Winner of ten book awards How To Mediate Like A Pro: 42 Rules for Mediating Disputes Winner of twelve book awards, and How to Negotiate Like a Pro, winner of twelve books awards. Mgreen464@aol.com visit www.MaryGreenwood.org.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Meet the Author Mary Greenwood: Greet the Artist Paula Felici: Help Defeat Alzheimer's Disease at Le Cose Belle in Palm Coast Florida



Meet the Author: MARY GREENWOOD

Attorney, Mediator, and Author,
How to Interview Like a Pro, winner of 13 book awards,
How to Negotiate Like a Pro, winner of 9 book awards,
How to Mediate Like a Pro, winner of 12 book awards.

Meet the Artist: PAULA FELICI      

Artist and Owner of Le Cose Belle Gallery and Boutique 

Help Defeat Alzheimer's Disease  

Wine and Cheese Reception and Book Signing

WHEN: Friday October 11, 2013,  4 pm-7 pm

Where: Le Cose Belle Gallery and Boutique

5915 North Ocean Shore Blvd. (AIA)Palm Coast, Fl. 

Special Raffles and Door Prizes

A percentage of sales and raffles will be donated to the Alzheimer's Association of Jacksonville, Fl.

RSVP: pmf3641@gmail.com

Saturday, August 10, 2013

How to Deal with Age Stereotypes in a Job Interview

Some employers seem to prefer younger applicants for their positions. Often they have presumptions about older workers. If you are over 50 or even 40, here are some of those age stereotypes and how to address them in a job interview.
1. Stereotype #1. Young people are more techie and more familiar with advances in their field.
If you have recently graduated from college or even high school, there may be a presumption that you are automatically going to be more techie than a person over 50 and that you are going to be more in touch with advancements in your field.
You need to show up front that you have good computer skills and that you know social media like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. If you need a refresher course, then you should take some classes with a private tutor or at the Apple store. Make sure you know the language of social media so you are not embarrassed at the interview by a term you don't know.
To show that you are up-to-date in your field, be sure to read some current articles about recent trends. When I would apply for a Human Resouces position, I always read the recent Supreme Court decisions on employment discrimination so I could discuss my knowledge of recent cases.
One way to show your computer skills is to have a flawless cover letter and resume. Any errors will put your application in the reject pile. If you have a relevant website or blog, put that link on your resume, too.
2. Stereotype #2. Younger applicants will accept a lower salary.
We know that employers are trying to keep their expenses as low as possible. When they hire new employees, they prefer to offer a salary at the bottom of the pay range. If an employee has recently retired from this position, it is a way for the employer to save some employee costs.
Employers may think that candidates with a lot of experience will not take the advertised salary for this position, and if they do take it, they will jump ship as soon as they can find a higher-paying job. If this is a younger person's first or second job, their salary expectations probably are lower than yours.
As an applicant, you need to show that you are the most qualified for the position with your experience, expertise and education. If you do have some flexibility about salary, let the employer know. For example, if you already are eligible for social security or have a pension, then you may have some negotiating room for the salary. If you have a reason to stay in the area, let the employer know that as well. For example, you may have parents or children living in the same region or your spouse may already have employment nearby.
You need to show the company that paying you more for your experience gives value to the company. Explain that you have worked similar positions at similar companies and that you can hit the ground running. If you can, show that you can take on additional duties from other positions so that your value will even be greater. However, do not sound like a know-it-all when doing this.
Stereotype # 3. We can train a younger people for the job because they are more hip and flexible. Older applicants are stubborn and set in their ways.
The conventional wisdom is that older workers are set in their ways and want to do things the way they always have done them and are resistant to change. You have to show that unlike an old dog, you can learn new tricks. You have to show by your answers and demeanor that you are creative and have good ideas. You need to show that you are a problem solver.
Being hip is not a requirement for a job, but you still need to show that you can be hip, too, but in a dignified way. Dress with some flair, but don't be provocative or frumpy. Perhaps a nice pair of mod eye glasses will be a nice touch. I always like to wear a red suit or jacket, since red is supposed to be a power color. Always look professional.
These are just a few of the age stereotypes, you may face. Be prepared with your response and you will be Interviewing Like a Pro.
Mary Greenwood, Attorney, HR Director, Mediator, and Author,
 How to Negotiate Like a Pro, winner of nine book awards
How to Interview Like a Pro, Winner of  thirteen book awards,
How To Mediate Like A Pro, Winner of twelve book awards
Available at http://www.amazon.com
Visit http://www.Marygreenwood.org
Email: Howtonegotiate@aol.com

Saturday, August 3, 2013

How to Answer This Question in a Job Interview: What are Your Weaknesses?

The worst thing you can do when asked about your weaknesses is to say you can't think of any or that you don't have any. That just sounds arrogant.

Be honest but pick a relatively weak weakness. Your interviewers do not want to know that sometimes you have tantrums, take a lot of time off, let your secretary sign important papers, or don't get along with coworkers.
If you are applying for a budget job, don't say you aren't good with numbers. If you know that your predecessor is a micro-manager, don't say you like to get into everyone's projects,
A. Here are some suggestions with a solution to followup.
1. Sometimes I have too much on my plate and am stretched too thin.
Solution: I am working on delegating some of my projects to others.
2. I work too hard.
Solution: I am working on balancing my personal and business life.
3. I am impatient. I like to do things myself rather than explain to others.
Solution: I am learning the virtues of patience and will take time to explain what I need.
4. I am a perfectionist.
Solution: I am taking measures to overcome this. I realize that everything I write or work on does not have to be perfect all the time.
5. I hate to fire employees and I put off addressing employee issues. I often feel that with enough mentoring and training, an employee can be salvaged.
Solution: Although I still like to help troubled employees and give them a second chance, I am now addressing employee issues sooner if it is detrimental to the workplace.
B. Be prepared to answer the employer's follow-up question.
1. How is that a weakness? I want employees to work hard.
Answer: I will always work hard for the company, but I want some balance. Of course, I will make myself available 24/7 via cell phone. When I am needed, of course I will stay late at work.
2. How is that a weakness? Everyone has too much on their plate. Multi-tasking is a way of life.
Answer: That is true. However, I am always working on being efficient and meeting my deadlines. In some cases, I may do the bulk of the work, but mostly it will mean that my team and I are working together to get the job done.
3. How is that a weakness? I like perfection.
Answer: So do I. However, being a perfectionist can slow things down. If I wait for the third or fourth review, I may miss a deadline. I trust my staff and when I feel the product is excellent, though maybe not perfect, I will approve it.
If you follow these tips, you will be interviewing like a pro!
Mary Greenwood, Attorney, HR Director, Mediator, and Author,
How to Negotiate Like a Pro, winner of nine book awards
How to Interview Like a Pro, Winner of thirteen book awards,
How to Mediate Like A Pro, Winner of twelve book awards
Available at http://www.amazon.com

Friday, August 2, 2013

Can an applicant really be overqualified or is this code for age discrimination?

A. What does it mean when an employer says you are overqualified for a position? Is it a code word for age discrimination?
In my opinion, no one can really be over-qualified for a position. Either one is qualified and meets the minimum qualifications or one does not. So what is an employer really saying when it says you are overqualified? What are they worried about? Why would the employer want to hire someone with less experience or fewer qualifications.
1. The employer feels it cannot afford someone who is "overqualified" and is suspicious when an applicant will accept a lower salary than previously earned.
2. The employer is worried that the workers will jump ship at the first opportunity to get a job that better fits their qualifications.
3. The supervisor may be intimidated that you have more qualifications or experience than she does and think you may want her job.
5. The employer does not want to hire older workers and knows enough not to say it directly so it says it does not want "overqualified" workers.
B. If you are an older worker, how can you overcome the employer's bias against "overqualified" applicants?
1. The employer feels it cannot afford someone who is "overqualified" and is suspicious when an applicant will accept a lower salary than previously earned.
Explain to the employer why you are willing to accept a lower salary. Here are some possible responses:
a. I am on Social Security (or have a pension) and I have the flexibility to apply for jobs I really want even if the salary is lower.
b. I really want to work in this area (in my case Florida) and I know that the salaries are lower here. I know we take some of our salary as sunshine and good weather.
2. The employer is worried that the applicants will jump ship at the first opportunity to get a job that better fits their qualification.
Of course, a younger less-experienced employee may also jump ship if an opportunity presents itself, but that may not concern the employer. Here are some responses:
a. My family lives in this area and I am willing to take a lower salary to live nearby.
b. This job is the one aspect of my field that I like the most and this is where I would like to spend the rest of my career.
3. The supervisor may be intimidated since you have more qualifications or experience than she does and may think you want her job. Here are some responses:
a. When asked what your long-term goals are, don't say you want to get promoted. Instead say that after a long career in this field, you want to stay put.
b. Try to emphasize that you are a team player.
c. Be careful not to sound like a know-it-all.
d. Don't give advice at the interview on how things could be better based on your experience. Save this for later.
As an applicant, you must try to show that your experience and qualifications are a plus for this position. If you follow these tips, you will be interviewing like a pro.

Mary Greenwood Author of How to Interview Like a Pro, winner of fourteen book awards.

Friday, July 26, 2013

What are your Strengths? How to Answer this Question in an Interview

When the interviewer asks you about your strengths, this is not the time to be modest. This is the time to toot your horn. This is a good way to highlight your achievements and success.
A. Use the job description as a guide
As you go through the list, use the position description as your template so you hit all the strengths needed for the job. Here are some good examples:
1. I am well organized.
You may want to explain how you keep track of projects and how you prioritize them. Being able to multi-task is also important and not everyone can do it. Explain with examples if you can.
2. I meet deadlines.
As we all know, time is money so explaining how you meet deadlines can be very important.
3. I have the education needed for this job.
Your resume may not show individual classes or trainings you have taken that are related to the job duties so it is up to you to show you have the minimum requirements and a lot more. Again be specific. If you were in the top of your class, say so (remember, toot your own horn.)
4. I have the experience needed for this position.
Your resume may show that you have five or ten years of previous experience, but it is up to you to explain how it is relevant to this position so that the experience will let the employer know you are a skilled and seasoned employee for this position.
B. Show intangible strengths like integrity, fairness and loyalty
Education, training and experience are only part of the picture. The employer wats to make sure you "fit in." It is important to show that you get along with others and have a sense of fairness. Here are some examples.
1. I am dependable and will do all I can to get the job done.
2. I am a team player and get along with others.
3. I like to mentor employees to pass on what I have learned and I learn a lot in the process as well.
4. I am loyal and fair.
C. Show that you have a good sense of humor
A sense of humor is important in any workplace. It helps relieve stress and makes the job much more enjoyable. Show that you don't take yourself too seriously while still attending to the responsibilities and demands of the job.
If you follow these rules, you will be interviewing like a pro.

Mary Greenwood, Attorney, HR Director, Mediator, and Author,Second Edition 2012        How to Negotiate Like a Pro, winner of nine book awards                                                          How to Interview Like a Pro, Winner of thirteen book awards,                                                    How To Mediate Like A Pro, Winner of twelve book awards                                                Available at http://www.amazon.com                                                                                                Visit http://www.Marygreenwood.org 

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

How to Interview Like a Pro: When you are the Interviewer, Remember What it is Like.

The tables are turned
When you are interviewing a candidate for a position, remember what it was like to be interviewed. Even though this is a negotiation, it is important to have some empathy for what the candidates are going through and be fair in the process.
Here are some suggestions:
A. Let applicants know in a timely fashion when they are no longer being considered for the job.
I know that many employers do not contact applicants when they did not make the first cut or even after an interview. Even though Human Resources departments may be under-funded or under-staffed, I believe it is rude not to tell applicants they are no longer being considered for the position. I am old-fashioned about this, but it does tell a lot about a company that prides itself on its communication and it can't even send an email to applicants.
B. If there is a delay in the selection process, let the applicants know, especially the ones you have interviewed already.
I have made telephone calls to Human Resources after my own interviews and found out that: 1) the position is on hold indefinitely; 2) the position is no longer being funded; 3) the position is being merged with another vacant position; 4) the filling the position has been postponed until the next fiscal year; or 5) the supervisor of this position has left and no one knows whether it will be filled. So I think to myself, "when were you going to tell me?" The answer is, of course, "never."
As an interviewer, remember what it was like while you were waiting to hear whether you got a job offer. Everything is on hold in your life while waiting to see what happens. Keeping applicants informed is the right and courteous thing to do.
C. Always treat the applicant the way you would have liked to be treated.
There are certain positions where you need to know how an applicant reacts under pressure and that is legitimate. However, don't ask trick questions just to be funny at the expense of the applicant.
D. After Someone is Hired, Be a Mentor and Show the New Employee the Ropes
Remember when you were a new employee on the first day of the job. It can be intimidating, especially if no one tells you what is expected or what you are supposed to do. Assign a mentor or be one yourself so that the new employees feel welcome and have someone to ask when they have questions. This is a win-win because mentored employees are going to understand the position a lot more quickly than employees left to fend for themselves.
If you follow these golden rules of interviewing, you will still be negotiating like a pro.

Mary Greenwood, Attorney, HR Director and
Author, How to Interview LIke a Pro, winner of 13 book awards

How to Interview Like a Pro: Now That you got the Job, do you Really Want it?

Do I really want the job?

You get the job offer, but you are not sure whether you will accept the offer. Do you have cold feet and buyer's remorse or is this job not really the best move for you at this time?
Here are some questions to ask yourself to determine whether to accept the offer or to stay at your same job.
1. Have I learned everything I can at my current job?
You need to look at the pros and cons of your current job. There must be a reason you started looking at other positions. If you truly have nothing more to learn and the job is boring and repetitive, then this may be a good time to leave.
2. What are the real opportunities at the new job other than money?
Look at what your new job provides beyond salary. Will there be better mentors, cutting-edge technology, or better working conditions? If the answer is yes, then it may be a good time to seek those opportunities.
3. Does this job fit in with your long-term goals?
The job may sound very exciting and fun, but does it fit in with your long-term goals? If it doesn't, perhaps your goals have changed. The point is that you have to look at a total career for every job move. If the job adds new skills and experience, it may be a good fit for the long haul?
4. Is this a once-in-a-lifetime job that you will regret if you don't take it now?
The conventional wisdom is that "opportunity only knocks once" and that "opportunity often comes at an inopportune time." Only can you make that decision. If you have been looking at jobs for a long time, you should know how often a job like this comes onto the market.
5. Can I afford a lower salary? Do I need a second job?
If the employer has offered you a lower salary than your present position, can you afford to take the position, even if it is your "dream job?"
Be realistic about hos much salary you will need to live comfortably. What is the cost of living in the new area? If it is lower, that will help your expenses. If it is higher, you may need to consider a second job. If you take a second job, does that diminish the positive aspects of your "dream job?" Will you have the energy and stamina for the new job if you are worried about day-to-day living expenses?
Before making your final decision as to whether to accept the position, you may want to ask when your first performance evaluation will be and whether you would be eligible for an increase at that time.
Only you and your family can make this important decision. It is important to weigh all the factors so that you don't have any regrets after you have made it.
If you follow these, suggestions, you will be interviewing like a pro.

Mary Greenwood, HR Director, Attorney and Author of
How To Interview Like A Pro, winner of 13 book awards.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

How to Interview Like a Pro: Give Proper Notice and Help with the Transition

Give Proper Notice

The first question a new employer asks is how soon can you start. It is very exciting to get a new job offer, and it is tempting to start right away. However, resist that urge. It is very important to give your current employer sufficient notice. You need to give at least the minimum required by the company policy manual, whether it is two weeks or six weeks or something in between. However, sometimes an employer does not want your services once you inform them that you are leaving. I had one boss who viewed getting a job with someone else as a betrayal and did not even want to speak with me once I made the announcement that I was taking another job.
If you don't give proper notice, it can backfire on you with your new employer and your old employer. Your new boss may think you lack integrity if you do not give notice to your current employer. He may also wonder if you are going to give short notice if and when you leave the new job.
Leaving without the proper notice can also mean that you are not leaving in good standing with your current employer. This can have ramifications until the end of your career. Some employers have a policy that if you did not leave in good standing you are not eligible for rehire. This means that any reference from this employer will show that you are not eligible for rehire, whether you ever thought about going back or not. As a Human Resources Director, I have also seen old employees come back and apply for their old jobs many years later, not knowing that they are automatically excluded if they did not give the proper notice.

Help With the Transition

Even if you did not like the old employer, don't burn any bridges before you leave. Even if you don't intend to ever come back, you may need a reference from them in the future. Be sure to volunteer to help your old employer in the transition. Perhaps, during this transition, you can spend one day a week training your successor or wrapping up projects. Make a list of all the projects you are working on so there will be continuity after you leave. Helping your old employer makes you look good with your new employer. It shows that you have dedication and integrity so that when you leave its employ, if ever, you will do the same thing.
If you follow these rules, you will be interviewing like a pro

Mary Greenwood, Mediator, Attorney and Author of How To Negotiate Like A Pro: 41 Rules for Resolving Disputes, Winner of 9 book awards, How to Interview Like a Pro, Winner of twelve book awards and How to Mediate Like a Pro, winner of twelve book awards. www.marygreenwood.org

Monday, July 15, 2013

How to Negotiate Benefits Other Than Salary; How to Interview Like a Pro

Because of the economy right now, you may not be able to negotiate the salary you believe you deserve. Go to your salary negotiations with a list of things other than money that you can request and use as bargaining chips.
Here is a list to get you started:
1. Moving Expenses.
Ask if the company will pay your moving expenses or, in the alternative, reimburse you up to a certain amount. Some companies prefer to pay a one-time expense rather than include the money in salary. Get an estimate before your discussion so you have an idea on what the actual expense will be.
2. A Different Title.
If the company is vehement about the amount of the salary it can offer you, see if there is something about the job description that can be improved. For example, do you hate the title? I once had a title, Assistant to the City Manager, which meant I was in charge of three departments. However, to the outside world, it could look as though I was a clerical assistant to the City Manager. I didn't think of it at the time, but I wish I had suggested that my title be changed to Director of Human Resources, Labor Relations and Risk Management. Get a copy of the organizational chart so you can see the names of the various positions in advance. Again, if it does not mean spending more money to hire you, the company may be willing to give you a better title.
3. Travel Expenses or Professional Dues
Is there some expense that you pay yourself that you would like your future employer to pay? If you belong to a professional organization that is related to your job. ask your prospective employer to pay your dues or the expenses for its annual conference. If the company does agree, ask it to put that provision in its offer letter.
4. Vacation
There are generally two schools of thought about vacation. There are those who want as much vacation as possible and there are those who take as little as possible and will buy it back if there is such a program. If you are in the first group and like more vacation time, tell the employer you will accept the salary if you can get an extra week of vacation. If the company is willing, that is equivalent to 5% of your salary.
5. Health Insurance Buy-Back Plan
If you have health insurance elsewhere with your spouse or have an outside plan such as Medicare, you can see if the company has a health insurance buy-back plan. Some companies, in an effort to encourage employees get their health insurance elsewhere, are willing to share some of the savings directly with the employees. If the company has that plan, that is the same as a salary increase. If the company does not have a buy-back plan, you may want to still ask for a salary increase by agreeing not to be on its insurance plan, thereby saving them money.
6. Not All Companies are Flexible
Here is a word of caution. When you are looking for alternatives to a salary increase, remember that not all companies are flexible and want to negotiate these changes or benefits with you. Generally the public sector is less flexible on titles, salary ranges and vacation plans than the private sector. However, the public sector sometimes has better benefits than the private sector so know what they are before making your final decision.
This list is just a start of what can be negotiated. Be creative and add to the list. After trying some of these suggestions, you can be interviewing like a pro.

Mary Greenwood, Mediator, Attorney and Author of How To Negotiate LIke A Pro: 41 Rules for Resolving Disputes, Winner of six book awards Best How To Book, DIY Festival Runner Up, New York Book Festival, E-Book and Self-Help Category Finalist ForeWord Magazine Book of the Year Awards Finalist, Best National Book Awards, Self-Help Category Honorable Mention, London Book Festival How To Mediate Like A Pro: 42 Rules for Mediating Disputes Winner of five book awards Best National Book AWard, Law Category Best E-Book, New York Book Festival Best How To Book, Beach Book Festival Best E-Book, Indie Excellence Awards Spirit AWard, South Florida Writers Association Email: howtonegotiate@aol.com www.marygreenwood.com

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Here is link to the Money Magazine Article citing How to Negotiate Like a Pro


Here is the link to Money Magazine article featuring How to Negotiate Like a Pro.

Mary Greenwood, Mediator, Attorney and Author of How To Negotiate LIke A Pro: 41 Rules for Resolving Disputes, Winner of nine book awards, How To Mediate Like A Pro: 42 Rules for Mediating Disputes Winner of 12 book awards, and How to Interview Like a Pro, winner of twelve book awards. www.MaryGreenwood.org

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

How to Negotiate Like a Pro by Mary Greenwood quoted in July issue of Money Magazine

Confronting a Neighbor Who's Hurting Your Home Value 

Stephanie AuWerter has written an article in the July issue of Money Magazine about negotiating with your neighbor and quotes my book,  How to Negotiate Like a Pro. According to a recent survey 60 % of all Americans have a pet peeve with someone who lives nearby.

Here is the tip that was used in the Money Magazine article:
1. Focus on the goal. Don't be distracted by your emotions.
"The worst thing to do is march over when you are angry and demand action." This escalates the problem and you can lose control of the situation. Take 24 hours before talking with the neighbor and when you do, plan what you are going to say.

Here are some of my other tips that were not used.
2. You don't have to be right to settle.
Don't dwell on the past and get right to the solution. The past is called the past for a reason. Many neighbors want to rehash who started it and revel in all the details. The important part is getting to the present and having a plan on how to resolve it.

3. Ask your neighbor if he is aware of the problem.
In your first discussion, don't threaten or discuss the law. Just ask if he/she is aware of the problem.
A. Are you aware that your dog barks when you are away or when you leave him in the yard?
B. Are you aware that your tree's roots or fruit are coming onto my property?
C. Are you aware that the loud music at night can be heard at my house even when I close my windows?

4. If the neighbor is not aware, that can be a good sign.
Not being aware can be a good sign if that awareness makes him apologize or offer a solution. Even if you know that the neighbor is fully aware of the problem, let him save face by trying to plead ignorance or apologize. Hopefully the neighbor will agree to fix the problem now that he/she knows it exists.

5. If the neighbor is aware, explain why there is a problem.
A. The baby can't sleep.
B. I have to get up early in the morning.
C. The fruit and branches are interfering with my mower.
D. My wall could be damaged by roots.
E. I am trying to sell my house and I want the neighborhood to look nice.

6. Offer a Solution
If the neighbor has a solution, work with it even if your solution is not quite the same. If the neighbor does not volunteer a solution, suggest one. Have both sides do something as part of the solution so it does not look one-sided.

7. Trees Solutions
A. Ask the neighbor to trim
B. Volunteer to trim yourself (with his permission, of course.)
C. Have a landscaping company do the work and split the costs.
D. Have the tree moved and split the costs.
D. Volunteer to clean up fruit and nuts if you can keep them.

8. Noise Solutions
A. You both agree to close your windows to muffle the sound.
B. The neighbor agrees to turn down the volume after a certain time on weekdays and you agree it can be louder during the day and weekends

9. Dog Solutions
A. Neighbor agrees to bring the dogs in at night or when they are out.
B. Neighbor agrees to let the dogs in when they start to bark.
C. Suggest putting the dogs in an area farthest from your house.
D. You could suggest obedience school, but be careful with this one.

10. Messy Yard Solutions
A. Explain what needs to be done. Those with a messy yard may not see it because they are in denial.
B. Offer to help with basic clean-up.
C. Offer to bring in a cleaning service and help pay part of expenses. This may seem extreme but it is cheaper than legal fees, especially if you are trying to sell your place.

11. Final Thoughts
A. You are neighbors and will still be living next to each other whatever the solution (unless you move.)
B. Don't do anything to escalate the problem. Remember the Hatfields and the McCoys.
C. Don't get caught up in the drama and don't try to get even!
D. Step back and look at the big picture.
E. Throwing some money at the problem may help resolve it for the future.

Mary Greenwood, Mediator, Attorney and Author of How To Negotiate LIke A Pro: 41 Rules for Resolving Disputes, Winner of nine book awards, How To Mediate Like A Pro: 42 Rules for Mediating Disputes, Winner of twelve book awards, How to Interview Like a Pro, winner of twelve book awards. Visit www.MaryGreenwood.org.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

The Feminine Mystique After 50 Years, A Woman's Rights Timeline by Mary Greenwood

Betty Friedan’s book, The Feminine Mystique, was published in 1963. The first chapter is called, The Problem That Has No Name, and starts with this paragraph: “The problem lay buried, unspoken for many years in the minds of American women. It was a strange stirring, a sense of dissatisfaction, a yearning that women suffered in the middle of the twentieth century in the United States. Each suburban wife struggled with it alone. As she made the beds, shopped for groceries, matched slipcover material, ate peanut butter sandwiches with her children, chauffeured Cub Scouts and Brownies, lay beside her husband at night--she was afraid to ask even of herself the silent question--’Is this all?’ “ All over the country women were asking whether this all there was for women’s opportunities. Friedan’s helped start the women’s movement in the 1960’s along with other feminists such as Gloria Steinhem and Bella Abzug.

The Feminine Mystique was required reading at my college, but it took awhile to realize that women did not have many rights at that time. Women could not have their own credit or credit cards, the help-wanted ads were for men or for women, and women were not welcome in the workplace. Later in law school and then as an attorney, I saw first hand what needed to be done in the workplace, in the courts, in Congress and in the stereotypes of society. 

These rights came slowly, one by one. I decided to do a timeline to show some of the barriers being broken by women over the last 50 years. 

1962:  Ivy League Schools like Yale, Princeton and Dartmouth were closed to women.

1963. The Feminine Mystique was published, the Equal Pay Act passed and Lesley Gore sang, “You don’t own me!”

1964. Title VII of The Civil Rights Act was passed, which prohibited race, national origin, religion and sex discrimination 
            in employment. The federal government made clear, it did not intend to enforce the sex discrimination provisions.

1965. The Supreme Court established the right to privacy when it overturned Connecticut’s law banning contraceptives.

1966. The National Organization for Women was formed. Betty Friedan was President.

1967. Muriel Siebert was first woman to own a seat on the New York Stock Exchange.

1968. Feminists protested the Miss America Contest in Atlantic City. The EEOC banned Help Wanted Male and Help 
           Wanted Female ads.

1969. Princeton and Yale finally admitted women. 

1970. Diane Crump was first woman jockey in the Kentucky Derby.

1971. Betty Friedan, Bella Abzug and Gloria Steinem form the National Women’s Political Caucus.

1972. Congress passed Title IX, prohibiting sex discrimination in schools. Gloria Steinem launched Ms. Magazine. Helen 
           Reddy released, “I am Woman.”

1973. Billie Jean King beat Bobby Riggs in The Battle of the Sexes in tennis.

1974. The Equal Credit Opportunity Act allowed women to get their own credit cards.

1975. The United Nations declared 1975 International Women’s Year. The Supreme Court held it is unlawful to deny 
            women jury duty. 

1976. The Supreme Court struck down the requirement for written spousal consent in order for a a woman to obtain an abortion. 

1977. The National Women’s Conference was held in Houston (I was a delegate from South Carolina.) Women were 
            admitted as cadets in US Service Academies.

1978. President Carter established the National Advisory Committee for Women. Gloria Gaynor released, ”I will survive.”

1979. The first Susan B. Anthony coins were minted. 

1980. The Supreme Court struck down a law that denied a widower’s workers compensation claim unless he could 
            prove dependency.

1981.Sandra Day O’Connor became first woman Supreme Court Justice.

1982. The ERA was not ratified. It needed three more states to pass, but Connecticut passed it.

1983. Sally Ride was first American woman astronaut in space.

1984.The Supreme Court held that the Jaycess can’t exclude women. Geraldine Ferraro was first woman to run for Vice-President.

1985. Wilma Mankiller was first woman Chief of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma. 

1986. Hostile Environment Sexual Harassment was held unlawful by Supreme Court.

1987. National Girls and and Women in Sports Day was started.

1988. The gender pay gap between men’s and women’s wages in 1988 was 72%.

1989.  All jobs were open to women in the Coast Guard and Air Force but only 20 % in 
           the Marine Corps.

1990 Dr. Antonia Novello was the first woman Surgeon General.

1991. Sharon Pratt Dixon, of Washington DC, became the first black woman mayor of a major American city. 

1992. Carol Mosely-Braun of Illinois became the first African-American woman Senator. 

1993. Janet Reno was the first woman Attorney General. Ruth Bader Ginsburg was the second woman on the Supreme 

1994. Shannon Faulkner was the first woman admitted to the Citadel. When it was discovered she was a woman, it 
           rescinded the offer. She sued and won but left after first week of classes.

1995. Eileen Collins was the first woman space shuttle Commander.

1996  Women first surpassed men in number of Bachelors Degrees earned in US.

1997. Madeline Albright was the first woman Secretary of State.

1998. Lt. Kendra Williams, USN, became the first US female combat pilot to bomb an enemy target.

1999. Nancy Ruth Mace was first woman cadet to graduate from Citadel.

2000. Hilary Clinton became first First Lady to be elected Senator. 

2001. Condoleezza Rice was the first woman to hold post of National Security Advisor. Gale Norton was the first woman  
           to be Secretary of the Interior.

2002  Linda Sanchez and Loretta Sanchez were first sisters to both serve in Congress.

2003. Arizona became the first state where a female governor (Jane Dee Hull) was 
          succeeded by another female governor (Janet Napolitano.)

2004. Ireland President Mary McAllese assumed the Irish presidency from another  
           woman, Mary Robinson, and she was reelected in 2004. 

2005. Condoleezza Rice became the first African-American woman Secretary of State.

2006. Betty Friedan dies. Janet Gurthrie is inducted into the International Motorsport 
          Hall of Fame as the first woman to compete in the Indy 500. 

2007. Nancy Pelosi was elected first woman Speaker of the House.

2008. Hilary Clinton becomes the first woman to win a US presidential primary. 

2009. President Obama signed the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Restoration Act. Sonia 
          Sotomayer became the first Hispanic and third woman Supreme Court Justice.

2010. Kathryn Bigelow is the first woman to win Best Director Academy Award. 

2011. Nobel Prize for three Women’s Rights Activitsts: Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Leymah Gbowee of Liberia and Tawakkol Karman of Yemen.

2012. Augusta National Golf Club admits first women members. (Condoleezza Rice.) 

2013. Announcement that women in US will be allowed to serve in combat.  

As that old Virginia Slims ad stated, “We have come a long way, baby!” However, in the next fifty years, we still have a long way to go. 

Mary Greenwood, Mediator, Attorney and Author of How To Negotiate LIke A Pro: 41 Rules for Resolving Disputes, Winner of nine  book awards;  How To Mediate Like A Pro: 42 Rules for Mediating Disputes Winner of twelve book awards and How to Interview Like a Pro

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Mary Greenwood, Author of How to Negotiate Like a Pro, is part of the Authors Showcase in West Regional LIbrary in Plantation, Fl. on March 20th.

The Broward County West Regional Library at 8601 W. Broward  Blvd. Plantation, Fl. will be sponsoring an Authors Showcase on  Wednesday, March 20, 2013 from 2:00 to 4:00. Refreshments will be served.


Mary Greenwood, Attorney, Human Resources Director and Author of How to Negotiate Like a Pro, winner of ten book awards; How to Mediate Like a Pro, winner of twelve book awards, and How to Interview Like a Pro, winner of twelve book awards. Greenwood's books have been used in Negotiation and Alternate Dispute Resolutionclasses at Brown University, University of Alaska, Anchorage, Nova Southeast, DePaul University, University of North Texas, and University of Central Florida. Greenwood is an arbitrator, trainer and mediator. She lives in Orlando with her Boston Terrier Annabelle. Mary is working on her next book, How to Get a Job After You Are Over Fifty/

Antoinette L. Smith, PH.D., is an Associate Professor in the School of Accounting at FSU and author of You are More than What Meets the Eye. She is the recipient of many awards, scholarships and grants, including the Honorary Recipient of the Price-WaterhouseCooperes Auditing Alchemy Inc. Grant. She is from Hampton Roads, Virginia and lives in South Florida.

Martha McMullen, a Psychologist involved in biological psychology and computer programming, and Author of Driving WoodieTales From the Home Front in World War II, which shows what life was like for a quirky family during Word War II. Martha kept journals and notes for her stories of her own war-time experiences. She lives in Lake Worth in the winer and Asheville, NC in the summer. She as a golden retriever named Ginger and a Beagle/Jack Russell named Xanda.

Carol Purcell, a Science teacher for 36 years, decided to write about what she has learned about cancer in her book, Cancer-I Can Beat This (Causes, Cures and Options.) She has studied hundreds of cases of cancer and has been on a quest to find answers, especially since many of her family and friends have died from cancer. The book provides way to live a preventive healthy life style and a guide to alternative methods of fighting cancer.

Bob Sherman, Cohost of the monthly Writers Showcases, Author of three books of provocative humor, Dead Reckoning, Am I the Only One That Signals? and More Bull; blogger and columnist to the Waterfront Times. One of his specialities is above average common sense, which we all know is not that common. He is working on a manuscript, We Don't Speak Spanish in Brasil, a memoir.

The writers will give a short presentation and will be available to sign copies of their books. Refreshments will be served.

Hope to see you on March 20th at 2:00!


Friday, February 15, 2013

How to Mediate Like a Pro and How to Negotiate Like a Pro are textbooks at DePaul University, NSU, Malta U, UCF, UNT, UAA, and Brown

How to Mediate Like a Pro and How to Negotiate Like a Pro are being used as textbooks  in several College and University courses and workshops on Mediation, Negotiations and Alternate Dispute Resolution (ADR), including the University of Alaska at Anchorage, DePaul University, Nova Southeastern University, University of Malta, University of North Texas at Dallas, University of Central Florida and Brown University.

Mary Greenwood, Mediator, Attorney and Author of How To Negotiate LIke A Pro: 41 Rules for Resolving Disputes, Second Edition, Winner of ten book awards,  How To Mediate Like A Pro: 42 Rules for Mediating Disputes Winner of 12 book awards and How to Interview Like a Pro, second edition, winner of twelve book awards. www.marygreenwood.org

Amazon Author Central or Why don't my books sell in Springfield, Missouri, Evansville, Indiana or Davenport, Illinois?

The Amazon Author Website is a wonder to me. Every week on Friday morning, I log in to see how many books I have sold over the last week in the US. What I find most fascinating is the geography tab. The map graphic shows all the markets where my books have sold. There are 100 markets including what they call the "combined markets",  which must be the most unpopulated areas of the country and it is lumped together into one category for book sales.

Top ten markets for all my books: ( How to Mediate Like a Pro, How to Interview Like a Pro, and How to Negotiate Like a Pro)

1. Combined Areas
2. Orlando/Daytona/Melbourne
3. New York
4. Los Angeles
5. San Francisco/Oakland/San Jose
6. Washington, DC
7. Chicago
8. Atlanta
9. Dallas/Fort Worth
10. Boston,
11. Philadelphia

The combined areas is not too surprising since it covers such a large geographical area on the map. My number 2 is also not too surprising since I live in Orlando and I know that the University of Central Florida does frequent workshops with my book, How to Mediate Like a Pro.  I would have expected other Florida cities such as Miami since my books are geared somewhat to Florida law.

I thought it would be interesting to compare my top ten sales markets with Central Connecticut State University's ten most literate cities that was just released this week. Only three of the top literary cities matched my sales. I am not sure what it means, but it is still fascinating, Maybe Seattle and Minneapolis are not into "how to" books.
1. Seattle
2. Minneapolis
3. Pittsburgh
4. Denver
5. St. Paul
6. Boston *
7. Atlanta *
8. St. Louis
9. Portland, Oregon
10. San Francisco *

There are 3 markets out of the 100 where my books are not selling according to Author Central:
1. Springfield, Missouri
2. Evansville, Indiana
3. Davenport, Illinois

I have heard the expression, "Will it sell in Peoria?" Apparently my books do sell in Peoria but not in some of the other mid-west locations. I have no anecdotal information to know why my books aren't selling in the midwest. I am probably more surprised that they are selling in all the other 97 locations.

There is a lot of interesting information to be gleaned from the Author Central pages. I can't wait until next Friday to see if can crack one of the cities in the Midwest.

Mary Greenwood, Mediator, Attorney and Author of How To Negotiate LIke A Pro: 41 Rules for Resolving Disputes, Second Edition, Winner of 10 book awards Best How To Book, How To Mediate Like A Pro: 42 Rules for Mediating Disputes, Winner of 12 book awards, How to Interview Like a Pro, second edition, winner of 12 book awards. www.marygreenwood.org

Thursday, February 7, 2013

How to Negotiate the Fiscal Cliff Like a Pro

How to Negotiate the Fiscal Cliff? What Did We Learn?
The Good, Bad, and the Ugly

It has been over a month since we did not go over the fiscal cliff. I have been mulling over what we learned from that near disaster. Here are my conclusions.

1. Relationships Matter
One reason that Vice-President and Senator McConnell were able to come together behind closed doors and knock out some agreements is that they knew each other as senators from way back and had a certain level of trust from that relationship. That is why it is usually easier to negotiate with people you know rather than people you don't know.
2. Bring in the Big Guns to Finish the Job
(See number one above.)

3. The Broken Record Approach Does Not Work
Saying the same thing (no more tax increases or no changes to Medicaid) over and over does not work. This is the take-it-or-leave-it approach which in union negotiations is an unfair labor practice, bargaining in bad faith. In order to succeed, there has to be some give and take and some compromise positions offered.

4. Think Big, but if you Can't Think Big, Think Small.
First the fiscal cliff was going to be fixed forever. Then it was going to be fixed for the fiscal year. Then it was going to be fixed for sixty days. Small is better than nothing at all and perhaps something can be built on the first compromise and agreement.

5. Kicking the Can Down the Road Usually Doesn't Work and Can Make Things Worse (especially if sequestration is involved).
We know why Congress didn't make a decision in the fall. They were waiting to see who was elected President. However, that inaction created the fiscal cliff and made things worse.

6. Plan B Doesn't Always Work
The Speaker of the House found this out the hard way. He kept on saying he had a Plan B in case Congress did not pass the first plan. However, he couldn't get the Republicans to agree to his Plan B. This goes with "Don't count your chickens until they are hatched."

7. Scheduling Negotiations at the 11th Hour Works
Most negotiators know if you schedule a session at 4:00 on a Friday, it probably won't go past 5:30 because everyone wants to eat and start their weekend and no one wants to come back on Monday morning to complete it. The Congress first had to complete their negotiations by Thanksgiving, then Christmas, then New Year's and then by January 3, the date the new Congress was sworn in. This really put pressure on Congress because who wants to be in Washington during the holidays? However, if a session is scheduled, a Congressman looks bad if he or she went home while everyone is working.

Mary Greenwood, Negotiator, Attorney and Author of How To Negotiate LIke A Pro: 41 Rules for Resolving Disputes, Second Edition, Winner of ten book awards, How to Interview Like a Pro, Second Edition, Winner of twelve book awards, How to Mediate Like A Pro: 42 Rules for Mediating Disputes Winner of twelve book awards Visit my website: www.marygreenwood.org
Email: mgreen464@aol.com