How can answering a single question cause you to lose money? If you want to learn how to handle yourself in common business situations, this episode is for you!
Robert is a software engineer turned entrepreneur. He has run the gamut graduating from Georgia Tech at 20 to interning at Google NYC to writing a sonar system for nuclear submarines. Robert somehow went from being an engineer to writing, self-publishing, and selling a book about cold calling. He loves learning new things and being a jack of all trades but master of none. Lastly, Robert is the host of the personal finance podcast Your Money Over Coffee.
Time Stamped Show Notes
[1:05] An engineer turned entrepreneur working on products and things has answered a question that cost him thousands of dollars.
[3:09] Cold calling is was a necessity for Graham when he had to sell a software. That trained him for something he never considered.
[5:55] A question in a job interview can cost you thousands of dollars depending on how you answer it.
[6:59] Just out of grad school with a paid internship, salary negotiation was not considered.
[8:34] Doing research after grad school, Graham went on to have a job in a security company, where he got the job but learned about the importance of how to answer: How much did you made at your last job?
[10:22] Answering that question or not is valid but you never know what the employer would do with that. An offer based on that leaves the interviewee at a disadvantage for negotiation.
[12:09] Not wanting to stay any longer at the research lab, the security company was a jump from that job but not the best.
[14:13] Despite not being the best offer for the job, Graham took it and stayed there for a couple of years.
[16:33] Despite having to take it, the job wasn’t the best as it did not allow Robert to have more responsibilities.
[17:30] More money could mean a different relationship with the company but in the end, the job wasn’t great.
[18:19] Failing Forward Segment
- What is the bottom line reason of this failure? – “I just didn’t think negotiation was an issue for an engineer. I didn’t understand that other people were paid to do this, to hire people and outnegotiate them to pay less for labor.”
- What is the single most important lesson you learned from this? – “Negotiation comes up in everybody’s lives all the time. Everyone should have some negotiation skills and when it comes to things as cars and job it could make a difference.”
- What are the major ways you protect yourself from future failures? – “I think it’s important most of all to be prepared. So you can read some books about negotiation, you can practice negotiation. Be prepared.”
- Who do you turn to when you need help? – “I’ve developed some relationships over time with some other people in similar arcs in their entrepreneurial careers or their business careers.“
- What advice would you give to someone in a similar position? – “You can always play for time and not answer a question.”
[28:16] Be prepared for the questions that you hope they don’t ask.
[33:17] You can listen to Robert’s finance advice on the podcast Your Money Over Coffee at www.yourmoneyovercoffee.com and contact him on firstname.lastname@example.org
[36:15] Robert’s final thought: “Know what you’re worth, know what the thing you’re buying is worth and be prepared and know what relationships are worth.”