“If I can do that – get the contract signed by next week – can we lock up this deal right now?” I asked.

“Yes, we can,” she answered.

Because I asked that one question, a deal that we’d been negotiating for weeks was instantly done. It’s an old technique, but one worth reminding yourself of from time to time.

When the other party says they want “one more thing”… they’re often telling you that they’re ready to make a deal – and bells should go off in your head. If you can live with the request, you can likely close the deal right then and there.

Recognizing subtle “buying” signs like this one is a skill you should work on developing. I recommend practicing whenever the opportunity arises in your everyday life.

Let’s say you and your wife can’t agree on dinner plans. You really want Japanese, but she’s hesitating. “I don’t know if I want to go out at all,” she grumbles. “We always go where you want to go.”

So you say, “Would you be okay with Japanese tonight if we go to your favorite sushi place – and next time we go anywhere you want to go?”

She nods emphatically… and you’ve got yourself a deal.

[Ed. Note: Paul Lawrence is a successful entrepreneur and publisher who has started over a dozen profitable enterprises. To get more practical small-business tips, check out Paul’s “Street Smart” program by clicking right here.

Effective negotiation is just one skill you need to be successful in business. To learn dozens of others, use Ready, Fire, Aim: Zero to $100 Million in No Time Flat by Michael Masterson as your reference guide.]

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Paul Lawrence

Paul Lawrence is an entrepreneur who has made his living starting and running a series of profitable businesses. One day while cleaning his mother's pool for a few extra bucks, it dawned on Paul that he could perhaps start his own pool cleaning business. He carefully employed all the marketing techniques that he had learned in school and designed his first flyer. Immediately the business took off and within a week, Paul had his own little business. He quickly expanded, hired employees and then eventually sold it some relatives who made well over $250,000 in the next year before they eventually sold it for a six figure profit. After finishing college, Paul did a brief stint in a management program for a national rental company, but he quickly realized that he was much happier running his own show. Paul left the rental company and launched one of the most financially successful independent ballroom dance instruction companies in the state of Florida where he received quite a bit of media attention for his revolutionary business practices that included front page features in the Life Style section of the Sun Sentinel, features in the Miami Herald, Boca News, Center Stage Entertainment and many others. With that business running profitably, Paul started several other businesses either individually or as partnerships that included a million dollar video production company, a mortgage brokerage, a home maintenance business, several mail order companies, a business consulting service among others.With a love of movies, Paul began to work at breaking into Hollywood as a screenwriter where he's beaten the odds by becoming a produced writer. He is a credited writer for the film CRUEL WORLD, starring Jaime Presley and Eddie Furlong and has signed a development deal for a national television series with one of the world's largest producers of television and films among his half a dozen sales and options of movie scripts he wrote. Paul is the creator of the Quick & Easy Microbusiness program.