In 2004, I was vacation relief for another anchor on her daily morning segment. At this point, I had been doing business news for 9 years. I was a well oiled machine at waking up before 5am and rattling off stock news on television.
The powers that be decided that day, I would become the permanent morning business news anchor.
For days, different stakeholders in the corporation (because all TV stations are owned by giant corporates), were calling me non-stop, asking me for my decision. Would I take the job? When would I take the job? I also got a distraught call from the anchor I was replacing. “Are you taking my job?” she said.
This wasn’t my decision.
When I sat across the table to sign papers to become the business news anchor on the number 1 station in the country, I did have one decision to make.
I looked at the number on the contract, and blithely signed on the dotted line. I was so bloody excited to invited to the table, that I didn’t negotiate. I didn’t take agency over the process.
If our guest speaker Alison Taffel Rabinowitz had been at my side, she would have unapologetically said, “It’s a good place to start……” and continued the conversation, lobbying for more. I later learned, my salary was a 1/3 of what my predecessor had made.
Today, we share with you actionable language I wish I had back then. It’s language you can deploy in real time when negotiating on your own behalf.