Engineers, Learn to Negotiate

Engineers, Learn to Negotiate

Another reason why communication is crucial in Engineering. Iwas sitting in a cafe in the heart of San Francisco, eating a strawberry cake with a cup of coffee. It was mid-June, the weather was warm, and I finished a technical interview. As I was drinking my coffee, I looked through the glass window of the cafe, watching cars and people passing by, and thinking about the number I just offered to the company to hire me. I was scared to lose the job but also scared not to negotiate.

I was sitting in a cafe in the heart of San Francisco, eating a strawberry cake with a cup of coffee. It was mid-June, the weather was warm, and I finished a technical interview. As I was drinking my coffee, I looked through the glass window of the cafe, watching cars and people passing by, and thinking about the number I just offered to the company to hire me. I was scared to lose the job but also scared not to negotiate. I gave them a number way more than my current salary; I was reluctant they accept and to get the job. As I drowned in my thoughts, my phone rang, It was the recruiter of the company, I was shocked and thought it is a rejection call, since it is just 30 mins passed from the time I left. I hold the phone: “Hi, this is Nazanin.”

She said: “Hi Nazanin. I know this is a speedy response, but we didn’t want to lose you so that we will send you an offer letter right now.”

I was shocked, stumbled, how did this happen? The number was so high, but they accepted it. I did it. I was able to negotiate and persuade them that I am worthy of the salary. I worked there for four years, and during that time I contributed to so many critical projects, but I will never forget that moment in the cafe when my phone rang and I got the job. It was even sweeter the strawberry cake.

After that day, I learned how negotiating, and soft skills can grow your career and fasten reaching goals. Although I studied academic computer science and got many non-academic computer programming courses, none of those programs taught me how to communicate and collaborate with others. As programmers, I believe we interact with others most of the time during our daily work routine. We work with customers, product managers, challenging colleagues, and every human involved. Even when we code, we communicate with another person who is going to read that piece of code. Our code is not only for machines to understand but also for humans to read and debug.

When people ask me the most important skill I can learn to become better at my job and get promotions, I always tell them: The art of communication and human interaction.

I always try to pick up new knowledge in the field of communication and understanding human nature. There are lots of great books that I have read and many that I still wish to read. Recently I discovered MasterClass, an online learning platform with courses from the best and brightest of each field. As I am a fan of soft skills, I tool the Art of Negotiation course with Chris Voss, and I have learned many tips that can help any engineer who wishes to enhance their communication and human interaction skills.

negotiation leadership-development communication software-engineering career-advice

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