Brought to you by The Gap Partnership:
TGP consultant Dürrin Ergün delivered a negotiation masterclass at an event designed to empower and inspire Turkish women in business. She explains why it resonated with her.
When I’m asked what my job as a negotiation consultant involves, my reply is simple – I help my clients realize their full potential as negotiators. I’m lucky to work with people from diverse regions, roles, and backgrounds; and with both men and women. While I believe that negotiation principles and practice, rooted in psychology as they are, transcend some of these differences, there is no doubt that women in business often face very different challenges to men.
I was delighted therefore to be invited to present a negotiation masterclass to a group of women from the Turkish Women’s International Network (TurkishWIN). Since 2010, this organization has built a global network of nearly 10,000 professionals. And, bringing us nicely back to my job description, its purpose is to enable Turkish women to reach their potential.
My negotiation masterclass for the Netherlands branch had an audience of strategists, recruiters, finance directors – and even a dentist. For all of these professionals, negotiation is a critical skill. My content covered essential theoretical elements, how these translate to a real-world environment and the critical factors for success.
I also included experiential, interactive exercises to allow the professionals to test-drive and discover for themselves the trip-up points and challenges they need to be aware of and overcome in order to become more highly skilled negotiators.
The feedback I got was hugely positive. One of the most telling takeaways was how our personal values often get in the way of achieving optimum results in negotiations – particularly those around salary and promotions.
For women in commerce, negotiation skills are key: good negotiations contribute significantly to business success. However, in line with the traditional female role, women can feel less comfortable pushing harder for themselves than they do for others. So preparation and a better definition of their value proposition would further support generating the desired negotiation outcome.
A woman negotiates more successfully when she feels confident, strong, and passionate about what she is doing. I believe that those three elements are key not only for negotiation, but also for a successful career.
The leaders of TurkishWIN in the Netherlands shared their thoughts on how negotiation can contribute to the future of women in commerce.
Business Operations Manager, HeleCloud
It is sad and slightly frustrating that we still have ongoing discussions about gender equality in the workplace. But encouragingly, we also regularly see research and articles proving that more diverse companies do better than their competitors with monolithic structures. In that sense, I see a more diverse present and future in commerce with more women in the boardroom and high-level management positions – or indeed, wherever they want to be.
On the other hand, I believe that even in 2019 women still have to work harder and prove themselves more than their male colleagues to get to their desired level in their careers. Being equipped with the right negotiation tools will help us get where we would like to be and make a big difference in our careers. Negotiation teaches us the right way to ask and helps us navigate the gender biases.
District Marketing Manager, West Europe at UPS
According to McKinsey, women have the potential to increase global annual GDP by $28 trillion by 2025. I believe that the future of women in commerce is bright and should be supported further by governments and companies. One of UPS’s core beliefs is that we should be helping to create greater opportunities for inclusive trade.
Statistics tell us that four out of five online sellers are women, and for every 100 male exporters in the Netherlands, 67 women export. We need to encourage women to participate in international trade to close the gender gap.
About a year ago, UPS and The UPS Foundation launched the Women Exporters Program – a global effort to enable women-owned businesses to strengthen their skills in order to be able to export around the globe. We provide webinars, conferences, and other training tools to educate women entrepreneurs on how to bring their products to foreign consumers, as well as shaping the policy environment to enable more women to succeed.