While your technical skills are probably what defines you as a designer, it’s your soft skills that often opens the doors of opportunity. Your ability to work with others and solve their problems complement your technical know-how to achieve your professional ambitions as a designer.
Negotiation skills are part of the core soft skills that enable you to communicate your value, interpret others’ needs, and work harmoniously with others to solve problems. The following five reasons show why negotiation is a must-have design skill.
Creates Long-Term Contracts
Quite often, a designer’s first contact with a client is a contract for one job. A single task to be completed within set parameters and a specified timeline. For designers adept at negotiations, it is possible to turn your one-off client into a long-term client who brings you to return business. If your negotiations skills are not at par with your design skills, consider an NYC advanced negotiation skills workshop to boost your career trajectory.
If you’re as skilled in negotiations as you’re skilled in design, you can use your first job with a client to persuade them to take on more contracts with you. Begin by demonstrating value with that first job, then negotiate for cross-sells and upsells that would bring additional benefits to your clients.
Greater Job Satisfaction
Negotiations skills reduce miscommunication between the designer and the client. When you have clear objectives and set milestones, it becomes easier to perform optimally. Not only will your client get a valuable result, but the designer too will enjoy a better sense of accomplishment, scope of work, fewer changes and reworks, and job satisfaction.
Negotiation seminars encourage positive engagement between designer and client. During negotiations, you get to connect the dots, close gaps, and align your interests. Mutual understanding of the work at hand and expected benefits provide a positive working environment. Mutual understanding comes about when designers and their clients outline how to measure progress, rewards, and costs.
Negotiation Workshops Improve Outsourcing Outcomes
As designers, sometimes you get more work than you can handle. Other times, you get design jobs that have some aspects beyond your skill set. Instead of struggling with work beyond your competence level, it would probably make better sense to outsource some of the work to other professionals.
Negotiations help you create the right relationships for collaborations in design work and may result in shorter turnaround times. You need to negotiate agreements that will not compromise your overall quality or eat into your profits. With negotiation skills, you can create clear understandings where you don’t have to micromanage or do too many follow-ups to get detail-oriented designs completed.
Negotiation Training Helps Navigate Non-Design Aspects
Designers work with many types of client. Designers may work with big corporate clients with complex needs, small startups with no idea what they really need, and foreign clients with cultural differences.
With such a varied client list, designers will rarely have a one-size-fits-all service package. Each of the clients may have unique needs. Through negotiation training, the designer gets to understand the client’s unique needs. The client gets an opportunity to express what they value above and beyond the generic service package they have agreed on.
Negotiation Class May Improve Design Skills
Maybe you’re a pro at creating some of the best static web pages, but you find most of your clients want only a few of those. The clients keep requesting for interactive, responsive landing pages where you don’t have much experience. You may start out outsourcing interactive landing page contracts, but, eventually, you may have to add this skill to your skill set to cut costs.
As you engage your customers by asking smart questions learned from a negotiations workshop, you get to learn more about current needs and new trends. Maybe creating designs for apps is the next upcoming trend—or designs for mobile devices. One of your best sources of news on what clients need is from clients themselves. Define your career trajectory by paying close attention to emerging and in-demand design skills through negotiations.