As an Architect, the ability to negotiate, particularly, financial negotiation in order to remain in business was the centre of discussion at the Town and Gown Seminar of the Department of Architecture, Covenant University, Ota.
The Guest Speaker and Managing Director, Chief Executive Officer, First New Generation Limited, Arc Ngozi Okokwu, on Tuesday, February 27, 2018, exposed the participants to the nitty-gritty of financial negotiation. He spoke on, “The Dynamics of Negotiation in Obtaining Financial Stability as an Architect.”
Arc Okokwu noted that a negotiation is an everyday event and most times it is difficult and cumbersome. This, he said, often lead to the loss on one side and gain on the other side. “It is the back and forth communication designed to make a deal when you and the other side have some shared and divergent interests,” he said.
The process of negotiation, according to the guest speaker, involves adequate preparation through thorough research before going into discussion with the client. This, he said, would enable the Architect to provide the solution to any query from the client.
Arc Okokwu advised the participants which include faculty, staff and students of the department, to always listen and document in details, any discussion with the client, which becomes an official and legal document in case of any future disagreement.
He advised further that they should always render service and add value to the client before financial negotiation. This would build a cordial relationship between the parties and result in more financial income for the Architect.
“Before you charge, first give the service. Add value to your client. Don’t show desperation by pricing yourself too high or too low. Build integrity, let them trust you. Your attitude is very important. When they are able to trust you, they will look for you anytime they have a challenge,” he advised.
The Head, Department of Architecture, Dr. Oluwole Alagbe, had earlier remarked that the Town and Gown Seminar was always a time to share an experience with experts as there was a limit to what could be learnt in the classroom.
Also, the former HoD, Professor Albert Adeboye, in his closing remarks appreciated the guest speaker, who, he said, had exposed the participants to the business aspect of the profession in order to be a balanced Architect.