Money To Live

July 8, 2009

Ask for a no

Filed under: negotiation,spending — by moneytolive @ 5:00 am
Tags: ,

A friend told me about the idea of “asking for a no,” which means asking for something you do not think you will get when you have nothing to lose. It is great practice for negotiating when the stakes actually matter.

Some people do not like negotiating because it seems manipulating or mean – but it doesn’t have to be either of those. At its best, two people negotiate to find a mutually beneficial solution. It is possible (and usually advisable) to be polite, respectful, and honest throughout a negotiation.

Recently, I “asked for a no” at The Gap. A jacket I had been eying finally came down in price from $78 to $30. I particularly liked the green jacket but noticed that the yellow and blue jackets were marked down to $25.

  • I took the green and yellow jackets to the cashier to confirm I would only pay $25 for the green jacket. She said “no,” they have different prices.
  • I asked if she could match the lower price, and she said “no.”
  • I asked if there was any other discount she could give. She paused and then sold me the green jacket for $25.

The $5 at stake is not a huge amount, and I would have bought the jacket for $30.  By asking for a lower price, I practiced staying calm in a low-stakes negotiation.

Have you “asked for a no” before? I encourage you to “ask for a no” this week and write about your experience in the comments, or email me privately.


1 Comment »

  1. at close of day, asked for 3 bags of basil for $2 at the market (saved $1)

    Comment by anita — July 23, 2009 @ 3:50 pm |Reply

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