Jessica Sitomer
Seminars and Coaching for the Entertainment Industry
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Entertainment Industry Question 14: How do I sharpen my negotiating skills? (ex: day rate)

Jessica’s Answer:


I get this question a lot from people who don't have agents.


Negotiating is a skill that takes practice and training.  Now, if you're like most people in the industry, you don't have a lot of opportunity to practice or you'd probably have an agent who snatched you up to do the job for you.  Training can be expensive, time consuming, and in many instances, boring for creative people.  

So, here's an answer that you probably didn't expect.  It is fun and extremely entertaining while at the same time educational:

1. LEAVE ALL CASH, CREDIT CARDS, & CHECKBOOKS in your car
2. Go into A and/or B (at least three 1 high end, 1 low end, 1 middle):
 a. GYMS: Equinox, Crunch, 24 Hour Fitness, Ballys, a small neighborhood gym
 b. CARS: Bentley, Lexus, BMW, Toyota, Honda, Ford, Kia
3. Allow yourself to be "sold to"
4. Negotiate with them BUT don't buy
5. Give them your real phone number and email address, so you can see their follow up techniques

Gym and car sales people are trained to negotiate.  You can learn so much from their different styles.  A Lexus sales person negotiates much differently than a Toyota sales person.  

Back in your car, jot down some notes.  What worked?  What turned you off? What words were used to persuade you? What was their body language?  Did they create rapport with you, and if so, how? Was a manager brought in to help close you, and if so, was the manager's style different?

Start writing a script based on bits and pieces you take from each that you found to be effective. Then try negotiating with people in your life for basic things like, a movie you want to see, a restaurant you want to try, and the new car you now want to buy because the Lexus dealer was so darn good!

If you have a question, put it in the comment section.
To your success!


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