Negotiating Your Worth with Ted Leonhardt at the 2016 SEGD Conference

Negotiating Your Worth with Ted Leonhardt is part of the Experiential Learning Series at the 2016 SEGD Conference Experience Seattle

Ted Leonhardthas dedicated himself to helping creatives achieve their potential in business, with a focus on negotiation. He's the author and illustrator of Nail It: Stories for Designers on Negotiating with Confidence. Ted is also leading a session at the 2016 SEGD Conference Experiencecalled Negotiating Your Worth, as part of the Experiential Learning Series—an alternative track to the local tours, which also includes sessions on Making the Media Centric Project and Using Physical Mockups to Help Clients Visualize the User Experience. (Are you NOT registered for the Conference, or signed up for the Experiential Learning Series YET?! Let's get that taken care of!)

Ted Leonhardt will be the first to tell you—"it never goes away". He's of course referring to the anxiety that negotiating provokes, particularly in creatives. But why do creatives struggle more with this than the average professional? Ted explains: "The reason we are valuable to society is that we connect with people emotionally through our work. Think about it...that's a very very powerful thing." It really is a powerful thing, the way designers shape experiences, and the emotional experiences that come with them. But what does that have to do with negotiation-anxiety?

Ted has found that creatives are far more empathetic than the average person, and that, coupled with their emotional connection to their work (which so often they feel could still be improved upon!), really amplifies discomfort, and anxiety and makes creatives susceptible to accepting low offers, rolling-over at the bargaining table. In fact, according to a study by researchers from the Harvard Business School and the Wharton School, anxiety makes us exceptionally accepting of advice from others­—even when it is clearly bad advice from someone who has conflicting interests. (source: 

Here's an example from one of Ted Leonhardt's talks, which you might recognize from your own experience: 

A designer gives a large corporate client with deep pockets a $100K budget for a project.  The client says they only have $70K. Instead of asking why, or trying to pursue it further, the designer says they will figure out a way to make it happen for $70K, and asks when they can start.

But there's hope!

Ted has developed a method to help creatives use that same empathy and emotional connection to their work to their benefit in negotiations: "So when we're at the bargaining table, we can use exactly the same skills to read the room and use the resulting intuitions to create a result that's to the benefit to our client, and ourselves. That's a huge creative advantage!". His enthusiasm and confidence are contagious, and he has amassed a wealth of knowledge, techniques and tricks specifically to help creatives successfully quell their negotiation-anxiety, and seize their true worth. He offers personal coaching as well as video and pdf resources—which come complete with engaging illustrations and animations. 

It's time to earn what you're worth: learn and practice Ted Leonhardt's techniques from Ted himself at Negotiating Your Worth, Thursday June 9 at the 2016 SEGD Conference Experience Seattle. Ready? Sign up today!


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