There are many books and workshops on how to be more assertive. The key to being assertive was described simply in three steps by David Berlew as:
Know what you want!
Ask for it directly!
Be willing to pay for it!
As we saw in Chapter 2, distinguishing between wants and needs is essential to your success and satisfaction as a negotiator. Step 1 (Know what you want) involves being very clear about your want. Step 2 (Ask for it directly) involves the skills of asserting/persuading, which we cover later. Step 3 (Be willing to pay for it) requires the use of currencies that we covered in Chapter 4. When using this three-step process, I recommend thinking through each step before verbally stating what you want, and then waiting for a reaction. In many cases, when you express what you want in clear terms, the other side may be willing to provide it without the additional incentive of a currency. However, if there is some push-back, you can discover what currency you could offer and gauge the price tag for this request. Then, you can offer the appropriate amount or type of currency.
Approaching a Peer-Level Manager for the Loan of a Key Technical Person for a Day