POWER of Negotiation Skills

You don’t get what you deserve; you get what you negotiate.” Anon

Negotiation isn’t something which occurs seldom in our daily lives. In fact, most of our time is unconsciously spent under its umbrella. Negotiation; is bargaining, and is used often in different contexts of business, organizational or personal life.

It could be asking your parents’ permission for a vacations trip after exams; persuading shopkeeper on reduction of sale price; convincing your boss to give you a raise; or probing for an investment for your business.

It is only a matter of paying attention to the situation while or before we are under the negotiation expanse; one can highly increase his odds to success. I will give an overview on the bold tasks to contemplate.

There are many vital and trivial values in the negotiation process but the keys to success are:

1) PREPARATION

It is best to know your game before encountering it. Know what you’re going in to and gather all the required information to increase your chances. Be clear of your objective, your target, the other person’s stance on the issue, and the right tools required to deliver your message in a meaningful manner. This will put you in a firm position with strong footings and you will be able to make a good impression which can lead to a better outcome.

Things to consider in this section are:

1. Language

2. Introduction

3. Appearance

4. Manners

5. Body Language

6. Humor

7. Timing

2) BE SMART

Your arguments or presentation must comprise under the station of being specific to your offer or need; make it measurable for others to understand it; it should not be something impracticable but should have some logical grounds to it; it should be based on the facts as much as possible so that the other person has little to deny with; and it has to be well timed based on the situation & location of the issue.

S — Specific

M — Measurable

A — Achievable

R — Realistic

T — Timed

3) CREATING BALANCE

There are some men who in a fifty-fifty proposition insist on getting the hyphen too.” Laurence J Peter

This might sound strange on creating a balance in a negotiation, but it is a drift of balance towards yourself while keeping an impression that you’re observing both parties’ best interests. It isn’t deceiving, but an art to show the other person that he is getting the best deal.

There are two sides of this matter, ENHANCE (your side) and REDUCE (other’s side).

E — Imply that something is exceptional

N — Refer to a need that you are satisfying

H — Refer to any previous history between you

A — Imply that you might be exceeding your authority

N — Offer your concession as nourishment to the relationship

C — Stress the cost to you of the concession

E — Provide evidence to build up the value of your concession

On the contrary;

R — Reduce their concession by the way you speak of it

E — Treat it as expected and take it for granted

D — Deny it having any real value

U — Underplay thanks in both words and tone of voice

C — Contribute it back to them

E — Use empathy

4) POWER OF SILENCE

Sometimes, silence is heavier than anything else in a negotiation provided it is used in the right way & time. If you have made a clear suggestion, then wait for a response or else you will dilute your case by striding in early.

5) POWER OF LISTENING

Most communications fail due to lack of attention. If you aren’t attentive, you will miss out any important detail which could affect the whole course of the negotiation. Besides, if you’re paying attention to the other person (by nodding or making imprints), he will feel more connected to you and understand your case more effectively.

6) DON’T GET EMOTIONAL

Human brain cannot detach itself from the hormones it releases that erupts emotions, and failure to control over it in a negotiation could possibly mean an end to it. Emotional behavior most certainly never helps a case construct to its’ benefiting conclusion. So, in order to make wise decisions and keep hold of the process, control your emotions; don’t let your emotions control you.

7) CONTRACT

Not every negotiation requires to be recorded down in to a contract form stating the terms and conditions of the deal, but it depend upon the nature of business. It is wise to state your audience of the contract element (if you intend to show at the end) at an early stage of discussion; otherwise it will scare them off and create lingering doubts even after a god deal is struck.

So, be prepared and alert during a negotiation and create a win-win situation!

If you have to boil down your negotiating attitude to two things, you can do a lot worse than ‘question everything’ and ‘think big’.” Mark H McComack

Additional Resource: Smart Skills — Negotiation by Anthony Jacks.