I was fortunate to attend a great presentation last week from one of the USA leading experts on negotiation and deal making – Paul Levy.
In his presentation Paul spoke about a fundamental negotiation tool all health business owners and their teams should know about:
Trading on Differences
Here’s how it works:
Let’s say you are trying to hire a new therapist for your business and you have found someone who seem ideal for the position.
However, when the discussion turns to the issue of money – their wage expectations are above and beyond what you are able to pay for this role.
The usual next step is for the owner to say – ” I can’t afford that much” and the therapists looks for another position with a wage that does suit their requirements (if they can find such a position of course).
The “Trading on Differences” principle encourages you – and the potential new therapist – to look beyond the wage and find other possible areas to negotiate on.
For example – you may be able to be flexible with the new therapists hours, holidays, professional development or even provision of a parking spot – which allow you to add other benefits to the position but keep your wage bill under control.
As an employer you need to spend as much time as you can researching the potential team member BEFORE the interview – and even during the interview process – as you may be able to identify an area you can negotiate with if required.
You may have a great new potential therapist – who wants more money than you are will to pay – however in your discussion you find out they have child care issues and need to finish early 2 afternoons a week.
Now you may be able to be flexible in your roster – to allow the potential team member the chance to come on board – and they may accept a lower wage in exchange for this added layer of flexibility.
What you are really trying to do is to find something that is of high value to the potential team member – but low cost value to you.
Which leaves added value to both parties.
You get a great team member at a wage you can afford – and they get some extra terms and conditions that make a big difference to them.
You are looking for a classic WIN WIN.
So if you find yourself in a difficult negotiation about money with a potential teams member – make sure you both look for areas that may provide you with the scope for negotiation – beyond money.
I hope this helps you in your health business.
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