BLOG: Leadership Insights

Get Email Updates

Do These 3 Things to Be a Better Virtual Negotiator | Tips from Molly Fletcher, Trailblazing Sports

March 13, 2023 Molly Fletcher

Originally published on

One of my biggest pieces of advice when it comes to successfully negotiating on our own behalf? Meet in person.

Turns out, that’s pretty impossible during these unprecedented times, as many of us are working from home, remote from our connections and colleagues.

But, expectations are bigger, deadlines are faster, and the stakes have never been higher in our professional and personal lives. Our ability to negotiate on our own behalf has never been more important. So, what can we do to scale this challenge?

We must adapt to our surroundings and access new best practices to close the deal virtually.

Here are some quick tips to get you started:

  1. Negotiate on a video call. I know you don’t want another video call right now, but during difficult conversations—which is what a negotiation can become—we get so much back through seeing the other person. We gain more clarity on the other person’s tone, timing, facial expressions, and how engaged they are. In addition to what you gain, remember that how you show up via video sends lots of messages too. So, stay aware and alert to your nonverbal communication as much as you are dialed in to theirs.
  2. Ask questions. Then ask some more. Connection over any kind of technology is more difficult than live, hence the need to be even more curious during these conversations. Curiosity drives connection and engagement and provides clarity as to what matters most to the other person. Be prepared with questions in advance and really listen—listen so you can ask more questions and gain more clarity.
  3. Embrace the pause. One of the techniques that is easy to lose when negotiating virtually is remembering to embrace the pause. Pausing inside of difficult conversations sends a message of thoughtful confidence. It’s a little more awkward via video—I get it—but using a pause is important and powerful. When you ask for what you want, pause. Hold the space. Let them process it. In that moment, they learn that you believe in your position and your ask.

Your Game-Changer Takeaway

You’ve got this! You and the person you are negotiating with are both on the same playing field, negotiating or renegotiating virtually. Negotiation is often a long process, so use these three best practices for virtual negotiations and close better deals, faster.

Molly Fletcher is the author of The Energy Clock: 3 Simple Steps to Create a Life Full of ENERGY—and Live Your Best Every Day. Bring Molly’s actionable and practical negotiation program to women leaders at your organization. Learn more about The Advancing Women Leaders Game Changer Negotiation Program.

Dark haired woman watches from audience of conference event

Women in Leadership Institute

NOV. 13–16, 2023 | Orlando, Florida, or Virtual
A 4-day immersive learning experience designed to equip women leaders with actionable strategies to overcome the hurdles women often face in the workplace.

Enrich Your inbox

with timely, relevant leadership insights

Join more than 15,000 others and subscribe to Linkage Leadership Insights: your resource for leadership development-related topics that matter to you, from the advancement of women leaders to diversity and inclusion and purposeful leadership. Plus, get all the latest Linkage news delivered to your inbox.

Related Posts

All Insights

Start Your Journey

Speak with a Linkage expert today