Business & Finance

Ivanka Trump’s Six Rules for Negotiating & Winning Whatever You Want

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Ivanka Trump comes from a family with money, but that doesn’t mean she’s not a capable businesswoman. In fact, Trump has honed her skills over the years as the Executive Vice President of the Trump Organization and has been involved in many high profile negotiations.

“I’ve successfully convinced others to let me redevelop the historic Old Post Office Pavilion on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, D.C.,” she writes for the Motto. “I also led the acquisition of the iconic 800-acre Doral Resort & Spa from my hospital bed after giving birth to my daughter, Arabella. (Speaking of children, I get to hone my negotiation skills each day at home; no one negotiates more aggressively than a toddler — and I have two!).”


The Daughter of Donald attributes much of her success to “meticulous preparation, an even temperament, and a genuine love of the game,” and shares her rules for negotiation to win.

Set your goals in advance.

“Without a plan, you allow the opposing party to define your goals instead of the other way around.”

Try to understand the other person’s objectives.

“The most valuable thing you can do is correctly identify the other person’s top priorities,” Trump writes. “Yes, negotiating is about money and the bottom line, but a lot of times, it’s much more emotional and complex than that. Realizing that the economic outcome may not be the other party’s top priority gives you more chips to play with and will enable you to achieve better results than you may have anticipated.”

Negotiate in person, preferably on your own turf.

Don’t negotiate by email. “It’s a cop-out that benefits the weaker party by allowing them to avoid a direct confrontation and take more time to craft a strong response.” And it’s easy to misjudge tone over email, which could be an issue, she says.

“I always prefer to speak face-to-face, typically in my own office, where I’m most comfortable,” Trump writes.


Pay attention to your body language.

“Regardless of how fast your heart may be beating, sit upright, make eye contact, and focus on breathing evenly.”

Listen more than you speak.

“When people are uncomfortable, and many people are when they have to negotiate, they start rambling as a way to fill the vacuum of silence. Some of the strongest negotiators I know just sit back and listen. The less they engage, the more likely the other person is to slip up and offer information they otherwise would have kept guarded,” she says.

Be prepared to walk away.

Of course, this is always the hardest one to remember.