Cathie Black, the former Chairman and President of Hearst Magazines, was the first woman publisher of a weekly consumer magazine, New York Magazine. She is also the author of Basic Black and a former President and Publisher of USA Today. At the recent WINS Summit in Manhattan presented by the Negotiation Institute, Cathie discussed the following techniques she’s used to negotiate in all aspects of her life.

  • Confidence: You have to ask – don’t be afraid. Also, sometimes learning by doing and finding a mentor to guide you through the rough patches is better than any educational course you can take.


  • Listen: The most effective negotiations come from listening to others. I became a better listener by simply hearing people out and letting them participate more fully. Early on I was a micro-manager, but now I delegate responsibility, allowing people to do their best work without constant interference.


  • Service not sell: Listen to a client’s need. I won the battle for Hearst over other O Magazine suitors by vowing that the magazine would reflect Oprah and her values. My partner on the pitch, Good Housekeeping Editor-in-Chief, Ellen Levine, reeled Oprah in by telling her that the magazine would translate her message into the written word. Ellen never put Oprah on the cover of the magazine without her permission.


    • Encourage and inspire: Lead by example. Encourage your team to achieve their goals; communicate how your team’s work contributes to the entire organization.


  • Respect: Know your place in the workforce. Always show respect for your company and your co-workers. Acknowledge co-workers’ achievements and show empathy and don’t say hurtful things.