Top 10 Headteacher Issue’s Negotiate Tips

Headteacher Issue’s Negotiate Tips: Want to change something at your school or college, or put forward an idea you’ve had?

Whether it’s proposing a non-uniform day, clinching early study leave or challenging an unfair rule.

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You’re going to need to face The Head, and you’re going to need to learn the Art of Negotiation. Read on…

Headteacher Issue's Negotiate Tips:
Headteacher Issue’s Negotiate Tips:

Headteacher Issue’s Negotiate Tips:

1. Make sure your suggestion is realistic, sensible and feasible.

For example, you’re never going to convince your headteacher to let your school have a 10 week Christmas holiday or change the uniform to pink.

He/she will not be impressed if you waste their time over something ridiculous.

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Headteacher Issue’s Negotiate Tips:

2. Talk to friends

If it will make you feel more confident.

Get together a small (and I mean small) group of friends to come with you.

But only if they can help you to argue your point.

Don’t just bring them along to hang around behind you and giggle.

It is VERY important to choose reliable people who are known for being polite and trustworthy.

And not people who may become aggressive or rude. Do not bring more than about 4 people.

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Headteacher Issue’s Negotiate Tips:

3. Pre-arrange an appointment

Pre-arrange an appointment with the headteacher at a time that is convenient through their secretary.

Don’t just barge into their office and spring your visit upon them unannounced as he or she may be busy.

Let them know if you are bringing other people with you.

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Headteacher Issue’s Negotiate Tips:

4. Get there on time

Arrive to your appointment on time- lateness gets the negotiation off to a bad start.

Knock on their door, and go in only when invited.

Headteacher Issue’s Negotiate Tips:

5. Words of appreciation

Thank your headteacher for allowing you an audience with them and state the reason for your appointment.

For example, “I really appreciate you taking the time to speak to me.

I’m here because I would like to discuss the possibility of arranging earlier study leave.”

Get straight in with why it is a good idea, and outline all the benefits it could bring.

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Headteacher Issue’s Negotiate Tips:

6. Get some facts

If there has been opposition to your proposal in the past.

Or you can think of reason why the proposal may be rejected.

Try to explain any ways you have thought of that could eliminate any worries the headteacher may have.

For example, “I realise that you may have concerns over whether the idea of having water fountains around school may invite problems with people misusing them.

However, I think this could be solved by having prefect monitors or teachers around to make sure nobody causes trouble.”

Headteacher Issue’s Negotiate Tips:

7. Talk about support or approval

It might be a good idea to tell your headteacher about any support.

Or approval you have been met with when talking to people- particularly teachers- about your proposal.

E.g. “I have spoken with teachers and some of my fellow students about this and they all agree that this would be a good thing to do.”

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Key into the current system

If it is applicable, for instance if you are trying to change a rule.

Be sure to explain the current system’s flaws and how your proposal would change this.

So if you were trying to make it so that students were allowed to bring mobile phones to school, you might say,

“Many parents worry about their children walking home from school on their own and would feel much better.

If they knew that they had a way of contacting them if they got into trouble.”

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Headteacher Issue’s Negotiate Tips:

8. Learn to give chance

When you have finished speaking, let your headteacher speak and discuss with him or her any issues they may have calmly. LISTEN to what they have to say.

Headteacher Issue’s Negotiate Tips:

9. Appear polite and mature

Always thank your headteacher for their time.

Even if they have said no to your proposal.

You want to stay on their good side, and appear polite and mature.

If it is appropriate, shake their hand.

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Headteacher Issue’s Negotiate Tips:

10.More tips

  • Try to maintain a good level of eye contact throughout (but don’t stare fixedly into their eyes constantly as this is creepy) as this will make you appear more confident.
  • Make sure you remain calm and courteous throughout the discussion. Losing your temper, interrupting them, being rude or telling them that they are wrong are all huge no-nos- they will actually be less likely to give you what you want.
  • It is very important to sit up straight- you can still relax but don’t slouch in your chair as this is rude. Keep your body language open and friendly.
  • If you have brought friends with you for the negotiation, allow them to speak as well, as they will probably have points you may not have thought of.

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  • If your school or college has a Student Council, you may like to raise your issue at a meeting of the group if you prefer, so long as a teacher will be present at the meeting. Whichever way is more likely to be taken seriously- the steps and tips still apply.
  • Sometimes organizing a negotiation like this can really impress your headteacher, if you do it the right way. They will most likely respect your courage and maturity- it could even stand you in good stead of becoming a prefect or head boy/girl.

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Don’t organize appointments like this too often or you might be seen as a nuisance.

If you start arguing with your headteacher over their decision, you are likely to face serious consequences.

If you are in a group, don’t speak over each other or worse start disagreeing with each other as it will appear as if you are not very organised and you are less likely to be taken seriously.

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