Rebekah Tobias and Paddy Allen Talk About Building Your Circle of Trust at the Negotiating Table

November 10, 2021
Written by: by Katie Robertson
In a Forbes January 2021 article, Kim Elesser wrote, “If women don’t negotiate assertively, they may not attain the outcomes achieved by their male counterparts. And if they do negotiate aggressively, they may face backlash which can undermine their efforts.  So, what should women do?” 

Rebekah Tobias, Head of Business Development at MARCOL, is on a mission to answer this question, and CREW UK is providing a platform for Rebekah to do so. By speaking to real estate executives from across the industry, she has initiated a series of conversations about the skill of negotiating.

For Rebekah’s most recent conversation, she invited Paddy Allen, Head of Operational Capital Markets at Colliers, and presented responses to the following question:  Can there be a Circle of Trust at the Negotiating Table?  Rebekah framed the discussion by emphasising how crucial her ‘circle of trust’ has been in navigating internal and external negotiations that were essential for her personal and professional growth. Paddy emphasized how being open-minded and collaborative has created opportunity and solutions throughout his career.

Both acknowledged the importance of self-awareness, and seeking and retaining value alignment with individuals in your network.   Authenticity, honesty, empathy and curiosity, were also acknowledged, as they enable effective communication and hold the key to influencing others.  Key takeaways from Rebekah’s second roundtable conversation are as follows:

How do I build a circle of trust?
  • Find your style and be authentic.  
  • What are your values? Demonstrate what is important to you through how you work and act toward others.
  • Those within your circle of trust should align with your values
  • Honesty, openness, and transparency will lead likeminded people to you and will naturally strengthen the relationships within your network
  • Be vulnerable, ask for advice and practice empathy
  • Sharing energy and positivity can be infectious and can reframe “failures”
Who will be in my circle of trust & how will they help me?
  • Peers, mentors and sponsors that will listen to you and give you feedback or practical assistance
  • Mentors or sponsors within your organisation may help navigating work politics, invest in professional development, or facilitate connections
  • A network of peers within the industry will allow you to leverage their experience of differing challenges that may be relevant to you or provide insight
  • A career coach may provide objective advice from an external viewpoint
  • The self-awareness developed via mentoring is empowering
How do I leverage my circle of trust at the negotiating table?
  • Adopt an open, growth mindset and internalise the lessons you have learnt
  • Be confident – your circle is behind you
  • Pivot when a fresh perspective is required
As experts pursuing their careers, Rebekah and Paddy reflected on how and why they built the networks that nurtured their careers, sharing insights from their experiences.  For more information about Rebekah’s next conversation, please visit: 

“Remember - be ruthless about your circle of trust and those who you surround yourself with; they will define your experiences and your potential.”  Rebekah Tobias