Success News You Can Use, High-Heeled Success® Newsletter - September, 2016

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September, 2016  

September Newsletter

Woman Standing Out

The Art of Negotiation

Kay Fittes, September, 2016

Is your career where you want it, or do you have work goals and future ambitions to conquer that seem out of reach?  Working hard at what you do won’t always garner a promotion or contract.  More often than not, you have to ask for it, or negotiate your way to it.  Now, don’t let the word ‘negotiation’ scare you off.  And, if you think the art of negotiation only applies to top-level politicians or six figure salespeople, think again.  Negotiating skills are a necessary tool for every business person, and the mastery of it begins with assessing your own self-worth.

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Kay’s Consulting Corner

Kay Fittes

Each month in this section, Kay offers actionable career consulting tips.

Negotiation Tactics

Negotiating can also take place outside the job, or in non-traditional job circumstances.  Getting creative in these circumstances with unconventional ideas and suggestions can often work to your advantage, and cost little to the employer.

  1. Getting Hired for a New Job – So many variables come into play with a new job hire negotiation, and it is a negotiation.  Although you may feel desperate to get hired, your skill sets and experience are no less valuable to a potential employer.  Don’t fall into the trap of feeling like a company is doing you a favor by hiring you.  Rather, think of it as a contract for the exchange of your skills and abilities for an array of benefits, the first of which, of course, is salary.  Other valuable perks include health and life benefits, time off, flexible work location, and personal care.  If salary is not the number one priority to you or your family, get creative in your negotiation and ask for alternative benefits.  If travel is required, ask for a dry cleaning expense account or access to an airport car service.  If health is a top priority, request an annual gym membership or reimbursement for personal training services.  Also, travel-related, you could negotiate for pet boarding services or lawn care expenses to be reimbursed.

  2. Getting a Promotion – If negotiating for a promotion or to redefine your current work position, get creative in what you offer in return.  Perhaps at your current life stage working from home is increasingly valuable to you because it would make you available sooner to your family at the end of the workday.  Likewise, it would benefit your employer by being available earlier in the morning for work or meetings, as you would not have a commute.  At certain levels, an annual bonus is part of a compensation package.  If you’ve reached this level, negotiate for it first by outlining how your new responsibilities will increase the company’s bottom line, or another demonstrable benefit.  If you need to increase the stakes, offer to reach a specific goal in return for the bonus.  For example, increase sales by 20% over a certain period of time; gain 25 new customers per quarter, or reduce expenses by a pre-determined amount.  Again, don’t give away everything in exchange for an amount that will leave you feeling devalued.

  3. Negotiating within Your Current Position – If moving up is not an option in your company due to its size or other dynamics, you may find yourself needing to negotiate within your current position.  Salary isn’t the only increase that can improve your position in life or increase your fulfillment.  How about a better office?  If you are sharing a space with 3 or more employees, bargain for a better spot.  Offer that you would be more productive if you had more quiet time to think, get your work done.  Improving your non-work life is another option.  Do you dream of going back to school, learning a new skill, or taking part in an industry-specific conference?  Inquire about education money as part of your compensation package.  The benefit to the company is a more skilled, capable or educated employee.  The ask can be as simple as reimbursement for trade journal or newsletter subscriptions, or some other type of online membership program that pertains to your skill or trade.  Such perks are easier to garner than you might think because of the clear benefit to the employer.

Negotiating is just one of the key concepts to being a powerful professional.  If this skillset and other career leveraging techniques are needed in your arsenal, High-Heeled Success® is ready to guide you.  Email me at or give me a call at (513) 561-4288 to discuss our process.

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Client Case Study – Toye Thomas

Toye Thomas

There’s no comparison to the value received from a coaching experience.  In 2015, I experienced remarkable results working with a life coach and wanted to apply the same experience to learning the public speaking business.  So, I started my search for a public speaking coach.  Kay Fittes was first on my list!  I’d perused her website, watched her videos and read her book, “Achieving High Heeled Success™: 50 Ways for Career-Oriented Women to Succeed”.  However, it would be a year before I would actually reach out to her.  It was a normal weekday afternoon in which I mustered up the courage to submit a coaching request to Kay via her website.  I submitted the request and moved on with my day.  A couple of hours later, my phone rang.  I answered.  To my surprise, it was Kay!  I couldn’t believe it!  You would have thought Oprah Winfrey was on the other line by the way I secretly screamed with excitement.  But, I maintained my composure.  Or, at least I think I did.  Since that initial conversation, she has continued to amaze me with her professionalism, insight, openness and authenticity.

Through our one-on-one discussions she has showed me the importance of knowing the true value of my experience, skills and time.  I discovered that I had been short-selling myself and over-selling everyone else.  I had both the fear of success and the fear of failure to conquer.  Yet, Kay was patient and didn’t give up on me.  She diligently worked to pull me through those ‘stuck’ moments.  Through our self-reflective exercises and calls to action, I am better able to sell my strengths and identify my wants and needs.  Within a short period of time, Kay has coached me through several key business prospects, in which I’ve grown from a small, intimidated woman who felt powerless in declaring her worth to a much more confident, petite, self-described powerhouse.

Little did I know that on that fateful day in which I decided to send a short coaching inquiry to Kay that my life would be changed in the way that it has.  Kay has been much more than a traditional coach.  She has been a role model.  Her willingness to share her own personal experiences is something I’ll never forget because she showed me that I wasn’t alone and that she was right there with me throughout the challenges, the doubts and the overwhelming desire to do something incredible.  Thank you, Kay, for sharing your gifts and talents with me.  I’ll always be grateful for this experience.

Toye Thomas
Relevé Consulting Services
PO Box 360532
Columbus, OH 43236
(614) 721-5995
(614) 206-0207

Our mission is to empower women of all walks of life, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds, through consulting services in workforce readiness, and personal and professional development.  We are “Changing Lives One Choice at a Time.”

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High-Heeled Success® supports Dress for Success through donations of clothing, time and money.  We offer complimentary seats at every workshop for women participating in the Dress for Success program.


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