Episode #150: Melissa Hereford
Building Your Negotiation Muscle
Melissa Hereford spent 18 years at the world-renowned sales negotiation training company BayGroup International and another 3 at Corporate Visions after the company was acquired. Melissa continues to provide training to salespeople, procurement and internal teams to negotiate like humans: to have more authentic and connected conversations, to use their voice for change and show up in their lives with intention. She has worked with many Fortune 500 companies, including Cisco, Oracle, Hewlett-Packard and many more.
[01.14] Melissa defines Negotiation – Negotiation is when two people have to come to an agreement.
[01.26] Melissa explains how negotiation is important for business – We are negotiating all day, every day in business.
[02.12] Why don’t some salespeople don’t like to negotiate and what can we do to change this – Melissa feels that humans don’t like to negotiate, because it’s uncomfortable. Melissa also shares how to become more comfortable in negotiation through the building Negotiation Muscle.
[04.50] How do you plan and execute a high stakes negotiation – There are between 8-10 things to plan for in your negotiations, Melissa shares them.
[07.20] What are the attributes of a good sales negotiator – Melissa believes that curiosity is the number one trait that makes for a great negotiator.
[08.08] Melissa shares her top negotiation tools and strategies – Melissa suggests that psychology is a great skill-set to use to compliment curiosity in negotiations
[10.00] Melissa shares her top three negotiation Do’s and Don’ts – Do’s, Plan, Practice saying to toughest parts, Know what You’re going to say to every possible objection. Don’t – Assume you know what the other person is thinking, forget to document your conversation afterwards and don’t get emotional or take things too personally.
[12.36] Melissa shares her favourite negotiation story – Melissa shares her secret ‘anchoring’ technique and how this works in her negotiation process.
More About Melissa
What was the last book you read?
I’m reading Dare to Lead by Brene Brown
Who / What inspires you?
I am inspired by the movement in our culture toward authentic connection. As a society, we have moved away from our basic need to belong in a community. People long for that sense of belonging. People like Brene Brown and Mel Robbins are finding the words to cut through the disconnection. This is especially powerful for sales people who often move from one technique to another, looking for the best tactic to close the sale. Many buyers today want an authentic, connected long-term partnership that will help them look good and provide outstanding results for their companies.
What aspect of your own negotiation skills are you most focused on improving at the moment?
I am always striving to respond to tension with curiosity instead of defensiveness. When a client says “no” or pushes back on price, my first response is always to explain when it should be to ask a question.
I love to read and hike in our beautiful Northern California hills with my pit-bull mix pup. In addition to my live workshops, I am building a B-to-C company, which is very different from B-to-B. I’m obsessed with learning about digital marketing, especially how to authentically connect with people through ads and social media.
How can our listeners contact with you?
My web site is www.MelissaHereford.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org