YP Summit Negotiation Tactics [Video]

Blake and Brett spoke at the 2018 YP Summit on Negotiation Tactics – and explicitly discussed how anyone can save themselves $200,000 only by using words!  If you want to develop additional professional and leadership skills like these, sign up for our MindSet Leadership Series (for experienced leaders) or Propel (for rising stars and front-line supervisors).



Good afternoon, everybody. Welcome to the final breakout session of the afternoon. I’m Kelsey Hazal from Nebraska Methodist Health System and I work in a quality improvement department.

Methodist is a very proud sponsor of the YP Summit. Methodist Health System is located throughout Nebraska and western Iowa. We bring full resources through our health care staff, our educators and our support services to make sure you have the care that you need when and where you need it. We have three hospitals. Twenty-two clinics. We have a nursing and allied health college and we are six thousand eight hundred employees strong.

We are also very proud of our community partners and for the fact that we raised $73 million dollars. You heard that right – $73 million dollars that we gave back to the community in just one year. At Methodist, we pride ourselves on caring for you and our community for the past 125 years.

In this room, we have Grace Pavlik. Grace has worked tirelessly to bring this session to you today and has been a part of the YP Summit. If you have any questions about how to get involved with a Greater Omaha Young Professionals, Grace is your person and she just waved. But thank you, Grace, for doing everything you have for the YP Summit.

I might say their names incorrectly, but I’m going to do my best. With that being said, I’m very excited to introduce our final breakout speaker to the room. We have Blake and Brett Hoogeveen from MindSet with you here today. MindSet is actually a company that spun from QLI, a five time number one best place to work right here in Omaha. They bring services to make you a better leader and also to have better presence within a room. So Blake and Brett have worked really hard to make people in the Omaha community more strong as leaders, both personally and professionally.

With that being said, let’s welcome Blake and Brett to the stage.

Thank you, Kelsey. Well, what a conference. This is a little bit of a whirlwind, being a presenter here. First goes from a thrill that we got selected to present. Then you see a rock star lineup of other people who are presenting and it goes to fear of hopefully, is anybody going to show up to our presentation here? And then they put us at the end of the hall and actually include our name “MindSet”, the company name in the session right next door. So, this is a big relief to see a packed room. We’re excited that you’re here. We’re excited to be here. We’re going to have some fun with our topic negotiation.

Before we get kicked off with the content, we want to do a quick poll just by raise of hands. We want to see where you guys fall. So, there are three camps. We have on one end, I love to negotiate. I look forward to every opportunity. On the other end we have, I hate it. I don’t want to negotiate. And then we have people in the middle that, yeah. I’ll negotiate if I need to know. Look forward to it. Don’t really despise it. So, who are like my brother and me – love to negotiate? How many people? Nice to have a few fellow people in the room.

There’s a modest showing. How about on the other extreme – I hate it, I really don’t like it? All right. Hopefully by the end of this session you’ll like it a little bit more. Maybe dramatically more. And then how about the people in the middle? Lots. Everybody’s in the middle.

Perfect, you want to talk about a big goal we’ve got? I do want to talk about a big goal that we have! I want to introduce a BHAG – a big, hairy, audacious goal. What if I said by the end of this session, I think the content that we’re going to cover here today has cumulatively the potential over our lifetimes to generate more than $250 million dollars for people in this room?

Come on, get a little energy. What would get you excited? All, I have to say is, aren’t you glad you didn’t go to Willy Thiessen’s session, next door? So maybe not the best example. They’ll try to make you 500 million over there. Who knows?

Today, we do have an awesome topic. We’re going to talk about about negotiation every day. Money is exchanging hands constantly. We’re all transacting on a daily basis. And it’s just not always perfectly visible what’s going on. But people are coming out ahead and people are coming out behind in their everyday transactions. So today, we want to talk a lot about how we can help all of you see more opportunities for negotiation, be more aware of when people are negotiating with you and ultimately help you earn and keep more of your money.

On the intro front, so my name is Brett Hoogeveen. This is Blake Hoogeveen. We always get confused. I’m the older brother, the better looking brother a little bit. He has a much better beard. And we work for, we are co-owners of a consulting company, MindSet, that tries to make workplaces better places to work. I’d like to share just a little bit about that with you in a second.

Today, we’re excited to talk about negotiation. And for those of you kind of wondering, what do us two brothers know about negotiation? Well, we’re co co-owners in MindSet, we get to do some negotiation with that, occasional angel investors. So, we see some good negotiation going back and forth with companies. But, most importantly, we are competitive, and we love negotiating. So, we’ve had a lot of real-world experience.

And then on the professional side, my brother Brett, he has had a chance as Director of Contracting for QLI here in town, negotiating with major national insurance companies, negotiating million dollar deals with likes of United Healthcare, Liberty Mutual, Tricare, just to name a few. So, he has a lot of real-world experience.

As fun as that is, which I promise you it is not, Blake has even more negotiating experience. And that’s for one very, very, very good reason – he’s really cheap. That’s true. I mean, really cheap. Blake is the best negotiator I know, and that’s because he never misses a chance to find a deal. You know, if he’s purchasing something, he’s looking for a deal. If he’s selling something, he’s pretty shrewd on that front, too. And so today we’re going to share a few examples, If we have time as we go through today, of just some of Blake’s practical negotiating skills and some things that he’s pulled off, which is pretty, pretty fun or funny at least.

So, my brother and I, with MindSet, we are culture guys. The MindSet brand is better culture, better business. What you have on the screen right here, this is the backbone of all MindSet material when we work with companies trying to make culture come to life. Today, we’re going to be talking about principle number three – leaders work hard to help staff be successful at work and in life. This isn’t rocket science. When you’re a company and you help people be successful at work and in life, they’re more loyal to your company. They are more engaged. You build them, they build your company and you get long term profitability.

So fortunately, we’ve had some companies buy into that approach that if we can actually help your employees negotiate better, be more successful in their personal lives, that’s where we’ve had a chance to deliver this content to companies talking specifically about negotiation.

So what does it mean to you? What does it mean to be effective at negotiation? Well, there’s two sides we’re going to talk a little bit about both today in our limited time. One is, how can you negotiate appropriate salary? How can you do a better job of advocating for yourself to make the appropriate amount of money for the services that you’re providing? On the flipside of that is, how can we make sure that you spend less? There’s more money going into your pocket and less going out, and that gap is where the value of negotiation is. And today we’re going to make a case that there’s a lot of value to this negotiation stuff.

One other point on that, there are so many ways in life, if you want to go earn more money or spend less you hear words like, you know, working harder and longer, etc., or sacrificing on the expense side, you know, giving up your cable TV or, you know, becoming a one car family or whatever it might be that you have to really sacrifice to cut expenses. If you’re really shrewd and good at negotiation and look out for yourself in that regard, you can make more money, spend less and make the exact same purchasing decisions. You’re just getting better deals. We won’t talk about that today.

There is one essential to negotiation. This is the big hump for people that either are in the negotiation camp or the non-negotiation camp, but we want to push you on this because it’s just not complicated. There’s one thing that if you’ll do this one thing, you will get 50 to 60 percent of the benefit of the, you know, the world’s leading best negotiator dealmaker in the world. That one multi-tool that you must, must, must do is ask.

If you don’t ask for a deal, you’ll miss out on 100 percent of the deals that you don’t ask for. So when you’re not comfortable with negotiation, that’s OK. But you flat out are missing opportunities that people that are comfortable, at least just doing one thing asking, are finding. And so, we want to encourage everybody to ask.

Examples of asking – it could be anything. I ask this morning trying to get into the parking lot if they had a sale going on parking for Mecca. They didn’t, you know, I paid eight bucks. But at least I asked.

You know, you go into a store and there’s a pair of jeans that you love, that you want to buy and they’re not on sale. Ask, can you put these on sale? Do you have a coupon? When will these go on sale? Is there something that you could do for me? They’re going to go on sale at some point and they’ll be happy to sell them at that price then. Why not today? Why not ask? I mean, heck, if a police officer pulls you over and starts writing you a ticket. Can it hurt to say, I just want to ask, do you have any other options here? Is there anything else we could do? And again, the answer may be no. But the more often you ask, the more you’re going to find opportunities.

So, many of you are here today because a company let you have the day to advance yourself. You’re going to take things back to the company. I know that some of you will have a boss, have a company ask you, what did you learn? Is there any ROI for our company? Get your notebooks out. Take notes. One thing you can do for your company. When you renew deals with vendors, ask if they can give you a better rate.

We know from a lot of studies, a lot of people are much better negotiating for themselves than when it’s other people’s money. OPM, your company, you can negotiate for your company, try to get better deals when your company is spending money. I think that’s a really great point. And make sure you listen to Blake. Tell them that, not what he’s about to tell you now, that you got out of this session.

So for the sexy part of this presentation. Everybody, I think everybody, at least in this session, you’re probably interested in how can I make more money? Exciting stuff, right? Well, we are going to introduce a few very helpful insights on how you can get that done.

A good question to ask, there’s a statistic, not on the screen here, that only 38 percent of millennials ask, when they get a job offer, ask if the company can do better. Ask for more than whatever the initial job offer. 38 percent of people ask. In the general populace, 59 percent, which matches pretty well with that millennial group, say that they report being apprehensive to ask for more money, either an initial job offer or after they’ve been working somewhere for a while. And that’s for lots of reasons which are up here on the slide. But the reasons why people are apprehensive isn’t necessarily as important as are those fears founded? It is that apprehension, the fear of going to an employer at a job offer or later on down the road and saying, you know what, I really appreciate that offer, I’ve done my research, I’ve looked at this, and I wonder if you could do this for me or could we do a little bit better, et cetera? That apprehension of asking? Well, it’s not, generally, not founded.

I’m sure you can find instances where there are reasons to be cautious. But 84 percent of employers, according to salary.com, indicate that they expect negotiation during an interview. Yet only 38 percent of millennials are doing it. 73 percent of employers say they’re not offended when people negotiate. And nobody, if you already have a job and a pretty large sample size, said that they’d ever fired somebody for asking for more money. 90 percent of hiring managers, this is starting salary only when you’re just starting a job, say they’ve never pulled an offer because somebody asked.

According to Nerd Wallet, 76 percent see it as actually a positive sign. Hey, this this person has confidence. It’s actually a positive sign if you show that willingness to ask. Most employers say that they have room to go. They add a little bit of padding to their initial offer, which we’re going to talk a little bit about. And 80 percent of those who ask, this is the key statistic, 80 percent of people who just have that courage to ask usually get something.

So, what else can you ask about? Most people, studies show they ask for the salary piece. They forget about the benefits. Well, what the studies show, again, a Nerd Wallet survey, of people who ask for it ¾ get a more favorable work schedule. Get to come into work when you want rather than when your company might have initially proposed it. Ask for more flexibility. 62 percent received additional paid time off. Maybe more vacation. More personal time. And again, of those who ask for it, if there was a bonus package, 58 percent were successful in getting an even more favorable bonus package.

So we have just presented a few stats that suggest there’s quite a bit of upside if you negotiate for more salary, more benefits. Which brings the question to, should you negotiate a salary offer? Want to introduce one technical term that any good negotiator, at least on the professional side, will know? It’s called a BATNA. What a BATNA it is, is your best alternative to a negotiated agreement. So how does this apply to the real world?

Let’s say there has somebody been out of work for a year. Finally, one of the resumes they sent in led to an interview, and by the grace of God, that interview went well and they actually got a job offer. That person thinks it’s got to be another year before I get another job offer. In that case, your alternative to a negotiated agreement getting hired isn’t very good. Compare that to maybe you’re a programmer in the city of Omaha and your talent skill set is in high demand. You could easily get a job. Might be a little bit more appealing to try to negotiate, the more likely it is that you’re going to be able to find another opportunity.

If you’re really good, you’ll be aware of what the other party’s BATNA is, what’s their alternative, right? So what’s my alternative? What’s their alternative? You put those two things together and that’s how you decide how hard to push.

So what we have predominantly talked about is what you can do to negotiate on the front end when you receive that offer. There is a huge opportunity that a lot of us don’t think about is can we read negotiate once we’ve been working for a company for some period of time? A mentor of mine told me a little while ago that he thinks this is the biggest mistake that people make. Said, it makes no sense. I have people who joined my company. They will haggle for two weeks on starting salary, they’ll work with me for 10 years, and they don’t ever renegotiate. He says, it’s crazy. Think about it rationally. When do you have more leverage? When they think your good, before you actually demonstrate it or no, you’ve actually been working for them. They know they’re good. When do you have more leverage? This person said you have much, much, much more leverage once you’ve documented that you are good. It’s a great time to professionally walk into your boss, if you feel like you’re not being compensated what you deserve, ask the professional question – would you consider a raise? Worst thing is they say no and you can maybe say something professionally like, Well, do you have any advice that I could take on to provide even more value to the company? Hopefully that conversation goes well and you find ways to ask for the raise further down the road.

Finally, capping off this section, just five quick tips for negotiating salary. Number one, when you get a job offer show enthusiasm, even if you’re going to negotiate. Act like you’re excited to join the company. It’ll be received so much more favorably if you show enthusiasm that you want to be part of it. Secondly, again, don’t forget benefits. Lot of companies have room there when maybe they won’t on salary. When you receive that phone call, maybe it’s in person, the offer comes across, you can have some time to think about it. It’s not just your decision, it also impacts your family. Take the evening chat with your spouse. Use email. If you’re one of the people that just gets nervous with negotiation, type a thoughtful email proposed the raise through email. That can be a good way to get back. But be prompt. Don’t take too long. Do your research, realize whoever you’re talking to might have to sell it to somebody else. So, make a rational case. Help them make the case for you. And finally, be thoughtful. Don’t let your emotions get the best view. Don’t burn bridges with how you ask for this stuff. Be professional.

So that’s the top line curve, OK? When does it make sense to look for opportunities to make more income and revenue? Now, we’re going to give you some practical examples of ways you can save dollars on expenses through using negotiation. Now we’re going to lay out five kind of consumer categories for you. But the tips that we’re going to list under each category certainly apply across every category. We’re just trying to do this for practical standpoints, to organize them a certain way. So, to set something up, Blake’s got the prop for us here.

We’re going to stretch our comfort zones and our talent base and try to act out a brief skit for you. So, I want you to imagine that I am a typical suburban husband. My wife and I are putting on a garage sale and we’ve been talking for three or four years about finally decluttering the things that we’ve accumulated over our first 10 years of marriage through a couple of house moves, et cetera. And, we finally decide we’re going to put on this garage sale and we’ve got our garage in our front yard and everything just, you know, covered with stuff that I am just hoping we can get rid of. And secondarily, we’d love to make some money, too. But the big goal, right, is to get the house cleaned out.

So there’s me. Here comes Blake. So Blake happens to be someone who is a mechanic, owns a small auto shop, runs a small engine repair shop. He’s driving by, sees my garage sale, sees that I have a beautiful, beautiful, beautiful, roughly five-year-old nice 22 inch deck push mower sitting out there.

And I want you to hear what he’s thinking as he pulls up.

Well, as the owner of a small engine repair shop, I assume this suburbanite over here probably doesn’t know what he has. So, I know that will easily sell for $300-400 in my shop. I’m going to try and get it for a steal of a deal. Let’s see if I can take advantage of this sucker over here.

Let’s see how this goes. Hello, sir. How are you.

Hey, I’m doing well. How are you, sir? It looks like, wow, you have a you have a lot of stuff that you’re trying to get rid of here.

Yeah, that’s for sure, I’m hoping. I’m hoping it all goes.

I can probably help you help you out. I see a lawn lawnmower there looks to be used and I’ve got my truck over here. What are you what are you asking for your mower?

Gosh, we haven’t got around to pricing it, but, you know, it runs fine, at least it used to. I’ve got a new one a year or so ago and I haven’t run this one for a little while, but I don’t know, maybe $300-400.

Oh wow. That high pitch, I don’t think that’s supposed to be there for mowers. And you got some I goodness, I don’t think you have a chance to get that much for this. You probably don’t sell very many lawn mowers, sir, but with the rust you have on this, this cap doesn’t even stay down anymore. I’m going to have to do some work, but I’ve got the talent, we can repair it before we sell it. I could give you $100 for it sir.

Oh gosh. That doesn’t seem like very much. I mean it ran last time I ran it. But you’re right, I don’t really know a lot about exactly what the value should be. But we just want to get stuff out of here. I will meet you in the middle if you’ll do that. Two hundred dollars. Is that a deal?

Well I can meet in the middle from there. We can go to a $150. How about that? I know you want to get rid of this stuff. I can give you a card. If you don’t want to take on $150 I can come back but if I come back it’s going to have to be $100 when I come back. Just the inconvenience here.

You have your truck with you.

I do.

Okay. Bye. That’s a deal just here. Yeah. Just to get you out of here.

That’s as good as we could do on our acting chops here. Not the stage talent that you might hope for. So, in this instance, obviously, we’re trying to make a few points here. You see a few insights up here on the screen. One tip, if you’re selling something, especially in a Craigslist type situation, most people, are going to expect to haggle. You need some room. If he wants $300, he should have started at $500 rather than $300. You need some padding.

Second of all, don’t accept the first offer. That was the only thing he did right. He did not take the initial offer of a $100. He countered, unfortunately, he made a typical mistake that a lot of non-professional negotiators make. They think, let’s just efficiently cut it, split the difference, go right in the middle. When I said $100, he said $200 is fair, I’m going to counter from there. So that’s why I got the advantage. I got it at $150 when fair might have been $200.

Finally, don’t underestimate the strength of your position. He’s probably thinking, I got all this junk, I just want it to go away. Got somebody that walked up. Be sure nice to have this go away. He’s probably not thinking, there are a lot of other people like me that would maybe take the lawnmower off his hands. And as far as I can see from now, there is only one person that’s selling a lawnmower. So, just trying to weigh those differences. Do not underestimate the strength of your position.

Now to another area of where we spend money, which would be the car lot. This is not nearly the sort of nexus of negotiation that it used to be. There’s so much more consumer information out there now. You can go to Kelley Blue Book and get within probably $700 of what a fair price of a new car is, you know, on any make or model, et cetera. But, instead of being thousands of dollars a difference because the dealers used to have all the knowledge and the consumers had none, there’s still hundreds of dollars to be made or lost when you go buy a car anywhere.

So the first thing is, I just would like a show of hands from anybody that has ever made a best friend at the car lot. That their salesperson is now their best friend. We have a couple of car salesmen in here that maybe I don’t know, but I swear every time I go, I think I’m this close to making a new best friend. You know, I go and they want to know all about my kids. They think I’m just the funniest guy. And it’s because they’re trying to get me to take my eye off the ball to focus on a relationship and other things rather than what I should be focusing on, which is, is this the right car for me at the right price?

The other thing that happens at the dealer in a negotiation tactic, you see all the time is that salesperson wants to appear that they’re on your side, OK? They want to be your buddy and your pal. And, they’re going to do everything they can to try and get a great deal for you. So when I, you know, muster up the courage to say, you know, how about $14,500 for that new Ford Fiesta or whatever it is, he’s going to say, gosh, boy, I would love to be able to do that for you. But, let me go check with the manager and see we see what I can get done for you.

He and his manager had the same conversation 20 times a day. You know, does he really expect that I think that, well that maybe this one is different? You know, there’s a different set of circumstances. No, it’s just that they have a principle of higher authority and there’s an advantage to that because there’s an advantage to having time and space to consider options and responded in a negotiation. And so that’s why a lot of times emissaries get sent to the table to have the negotiation and they have to take their positions back to the decision makers who then come back to the table.

So what do I do when they do that? They come back? Gosh, I had to work really hard, I brought you this deal and I say, well, I’d like to. I wish I could take that deal, man. But, I got my higher authority to. I have to go talk to my wife, and she’s not going to like it. The last one in the car lot that will mention, this is maybe the area where you can get the most value these days when you’re buying a car from a traditional dealer, and that is right when the deal you’ve agreed on general terms. You’ve agreed on price. You think you’re where you need to be. And then you sit down, and this technique is called the quivering quill, they say, sign here and you pick up the pen you’re just about to sign and the person thinks, oh, this is all wrapped up. And then you kind of pull it back a minute and you say something like, you’re going to throw in first your service on this, aren’t you, including oil changes? I mean, you guys will do that, won’t you? Or you know, can you put a spoiler on there complimentary or, you know, whatever that is is something that you want because the deals almost closed and you just use the quivering quill technique.

The opposite of that is when they slide that piece of paper and this, you know, happens to be the optometrist code is a name that’s used once in a while because you see it when you buy eyeglasses and gosh, they got a deal for $79 for glasses or whatever. Well by the time you get not one but two lenses and, you know, coatings and scratch resistance and there’s all these pieces that they layer on there that you thought it was $79 and by the time you leave it’s $350. The same thing can happen. Lots of places, and that’s called nibbling. You think you have a deal and then they tag on pieces. So that’s something to be aware of defensively.

The counter for that is to try to make them feel cheap. Oh, my goodness. I’m spending $15,000 on a car and you’re not going to throw in the floormats or whatever it is that they’re nibbling with you on.

All right, let’s talk retail. On the chance any of you know my wife, I married up. She is amazing. As long as I’m going to mention her in a presentation, I got to start with that. Anchoring is a powerful technique that retailers use to help people spend more. Classic example: my wife brings home a new pair of boots. She is really excited. And she got a steal of a deal on these boots, 60 percent off. What I used to say when she came home and said, got a steal of a deal. I said, Babe, don’t you know how that works? That’s anchoring. They said $200, 60 percent off. They don’t expect anybody to pay $200. Yeah. I mean, would you feel the same way if they just listed them at $80? You realize what’s happening. They put the 200. They sell them for 80. You feel like you’ve got a great deal. Well, my evening just got a lot worse. I have realized, nice work, babe, and you will look great in those boots. I have learned that much.

If you want to appear sophisticated, oftentimes you won’t get the best deal. Nothing wrong with sophistication. I have some friends, they’ve been successful, they like shopping at fancy stores, they buy suits that cost over $1,000. They’re too proud to negotiate. They’ve made it. They’ll just they don’t want to give the impression that they can’t afford these. Me. I shop at Men’s Wearhouse. When I walk in. I know, maybe looking for a sport coat, maybe we’re looking for a suit, I don’t care what it costs. I know what I’m going to say after I ask them. Once I find one that I like. I know what I’m going to say. Sir what’s this cost? What’s it going to cost me? Whatever number he says I’m going to save cool for the movies. I’m going to flinch – what? $200 for a blazer? You’ve got to be kidding me! Surely that includes the tailoring with it, right? And at this point, his eyes are kind of wide thinking how much time I spent with his guy already. And he leans in and says, oh, well, sir, we had a special on that last week. We can probably still offer it.

The point is, if you appear sophisticated rather than flinching and saying, well, goodness, that’s a lot you’ll miss out on a lot of deals. Yeah, my wife’s really done like shopping with me anymore.

Finally, Brett said I had to share this story. This is a little bit embarrassing. It does illustrate how cheap I am. The best deal that I have ever received on retail, I think, is for a sweater that I paid, what I thought was a good amount of money, I’m sure it was by $50 for the sweater that I paid. I wore it once and it got a little rip in the arm area. And I thought, well, this is a nice sweater. This shouldn’t happen. You know, take it back to the store, exchange it. Unfortunately, they didn’t have the same sweater. So, I returned it. They were awesome. They always are. They give your money back. I started to leave. And then I turned around and said, ma’am, what would you sell me that sweater for? She looked at me a little agased. I said, well, I mean, what do you do with those when they’re damaged goods? And she’s. Well, if I gave you $5, could I buy that back?

So I walked out with my sweater, got $50 back and got it for $5. That’s what everyday life is like in Blake’s world. So, it’s great. It’s a great place to be. I thought it was fair.

Point being, mistakes lead to opportunities, and this happens everywhere. In restaurants, this is a tip for your mental health, some people, they go to a restaurant, they get bad service, they get irritated. They are not thinking with a negotiator’s cap. You get bad services at a restaurant, you don’t need to get irritated, get excited. You’re going to get a discount. You’re going to save some money.

Politely ask, I know you strive to have high standards. Service hasn’t been the best, anything you can do for me? It’s amazing how much money you can save with just those simple words. Mistakes are opportunities. Don’t get frustrated.

How many people in this room either expect that they may be in the market, either buy or sell a home, in the next five years? Figured that would be most of the room. There are a few. My grandfather was a realtor, and he used to always say that the number one rule of real estate is the best deals don’t last long. And that’s really true. I don’t know how many of you have had that experience, but if you’re not ready to buy, if you haven’t done your research, if you don’t know what is a good deal, what’s a bad deal, what’s the right fit for you and your family, your situation, and you see a great deal you’re going to miss it. Because the 24 hours it’s going to take you to consider it, somebody else is going to going to snatch it up.

This is another Blake story. But the home that he’s living in, I’m pretty sure the gentleman was just I mean, the front door hadn’t even closed yet from him, said, putting his for sale by owner sign in the yard. When Blake went up and knocked on the door and said, hey, I see this house just popped up for sale and the guy had barely sat down yet. And Blake said, You mind if I come in and take a look? And the guy said, Well, sure, come on in. And I’ll be darned if half an hour later, Blake didn’t call me as I had just bought a house. And the gentleman had three more offers later that same day. But deal was done. And so, you can’t be ready to buy. It’s by far the biggest opportunity in real estate is knowing what’s a good deal ahead of time, doing your research and being ready to buy.

Another idea that works great, Blake and I have both done this to great effect and it works for both parties, is when you’re buying a house from someone and they’ve got all this beautiful furniture in there that fits the space. There’s a TV hanging on the wall that’s a pain to tear the mount down and patch things and paint, etc., there’s a sectional that just beautifully fits in the basement, they have three bar stools that match great, there’s artwork on the wall that you like or appreciate, there’s a card table that fits somewhere. Write it in, ask. Again, just ask. I’ll be darned if when we moved into the house that we’re in currently, if we didn’t get I mean, probably 12 things thrown in for about $1,000 added on to the whole price. I mean, we got it for ten cents on the dollar. They didn’t want to take it and it didn’t fit their new space. They were happy for a deal. So, something to think about when you’re buying a home. It really is a place you can get value.

And then the last things here are, and this is something that you’ll see when you buy a home, a lot of times little decisions lead to big decisions. So, a good realtor will walk a young family through a home and say, you know, which room is going to be the nursery for that new child that you’re bringing in? You know, what color you going to paint it? Oh, I can just see what’s the name. I can just see that right here on the wall. Right. And as you start to make little decisions in your mind of, oh, yeah, I would do this and gosh, it’d be great because of this and this. That leads to big decisions. You know, you’re already seeing yourself in that home. You’re falling in love with it. Which, if you want a great deal, it’s OK to fall in love with something that you’re going to buy or that you own. But, the one rule of a good negotiators, don’t ever fall in love with something that can’t love you back. If you want a good deal, OK. And so, you have to be willing to walk away even if it’s just perfect. If the price isn’t right, if you don’t want a great deal, that’s fine. But that’s the rules.

All right. Let’s talk about the service industry. My wife and I, we bought a new Buick Anglade. Well, new for us, was used on Craigslist, I was after a deal. The first time that we brought it in to a local service station I had asked if I could get a deal. The guy gave me the quote and I said, can you do better on that? And he kind of looked at me and I repeated the question. He looked at me and I said, Do you have the authority to give me a better deal? Or do you need to go talk to somebody else?

See, this is the key, if you want to be a good negotiator, you want to talk to people who can actually say yes. They can’t say yes, they’re going to tell you one of two things. No, or let me go ask. You’d much rather just talk to a decision maker. So once I qualified. No, you can’t. I said, can I talk to a manager? Is that a simple just conversation to send? This is new to us. I’ve never been here before. We’re probably going to be long term customers, any chance that you would give me a better deal on the service that you quoted? $1,000, can you do better than that? I’ll probably walk around town and say, you guys are great. I didn’t tell him that I’d be speaking to 250 people saying that they get better deals, but and 15 percent off, save $150 just for a casual, easy conversation with manager.

And then the other point that you run into a lot with the service industry, notorious for over promising, underperforming. That you go in simple oil change, sir? Yep. Come in at 9:00 a.m. We’ll have you on the road at 10:00 a.m.. I get there at 9:00 a.m. They get my car in 10 a.m. rolls around. I say my car ready. Oh, sorry, sir. Just a few things happen. It’ll be ready in in an hour. I say, oh, that’s actually a problem for me. Can you do anything for me? Well, yeah, I have a meeting across town and I was trying to get to you said it was gonna be ready at 10:00. Can you do anything for me? Oftentimes, they’ll give you a nice discount. Again, they said it was gonna be ready at 10:00. So I just say, well, that’s a problem for me. If you’re gonna keep me here longer, I don’t give in negotiation without getting you keep me here longer. I want a discount. Most people are happy to make that because they want satisfied, happy customers. And it was their error that caused my inconvenience.

So, if anybody needs auto work done, Blake is available and charged by the hour for a consultation. But I swear I don’t walk around just constantly haggling with people. I think I’m a decent guy.

Earlier, I mentioned that BHAG – the big, hairy, audacious goal. I said, I think that we can make $250 million wealth difference for the people in this room. How did we get there? Well, I assume if you can negotiate more income and you can negotiate to save on what you spend, I think annually that can accrue to $2,500 for each of us. If you assume a modest return, if you were to invest that money, say you’re 30, you get to 80 over your lifetime, 7 percent interest over 50 years, that equates to a million dollars. I think there are probably at least 250 people in here. So, if you use these skills, imagine the impact you can have over your lifetime. You could accrue a million dollars, give a legacy to the next people, or you can go on a few more vacations, buy a nicer house, get a nicer car, live a little bit more, as Brett said, without sacrificing.

We just want to give you guys a little bit of a carrot to start down this road over the next week, and Blake and I are gonna be the determinants of this. But anyone that wants to participate, we want to know who can find the best deal and we get to decide who wins. But if you just tweet at us @GoMindset, you can use #MASC deals if you want. Either one of those will work. But those are the rules. You have to do one of those two things. And tell us what deal you found. OK, we may follow up wherever we decide wins, we will probably follow up and just make sure that it was legit. And, whoever does that, we’re gonna send you a $50 Amazon gift card because we really want you guys to go out and try some of these things. And let’s continue a conversation around this, because it really can mean a lot to the quality of life that you live and to your confidence going about your everyday life.

So with that, go make it rain, people.