Negotiation: a must have skill!
Life is a journey, sprinkled with negotiations!
Negotiation is an important skill - at work and in life!
Don't I know how much negotiation takes place when convincing my toddler to brush or eat?
At companies, you will often see-
Leaders using negotiation tactics for getting more resources, setting tight timelines & motivating their teams
Employees negotiating to get more scope at work, promotions or raises
And then there are times when business deals are at stake and a lot of back and forth negotiation happens to come to the final terms.
Whether it's the day-to-day dealings or the one of big deals, lack of proper negotiation techniques and planning may make you feel trapped and leave you with a bad deal.
I have always found some of the below principles working for me for most kind of negotiations:
Plan ahead- I always like to go in the room with proper planning.
It is always good to know what I want (“Aspiration price”)
I know my priorities — and have a Plan B (BATNA- best alternative to negotiated agreement) — should they fail to reach an agreement.
I also make sure that I know when to walk away and what my bottom line is (“reservation price”) .
Finally, I go in with few items I can give to the other party. Giving up some parts will always move the discussion forward.
Listen.Listen.Listen- I have always found listening patiently and having an open discussion with the other party helpful in many ways. I am able to get a better idea of their expectations and what really matters to them. This in turn helps in identifying the gaps, addressing needs, and resolving the thorny issues.
Trust but always verify- There are times when the other party will present “facts” that I may not believe. They may either show that they have reached their limit to negotiate (ie. their reservation price) or that they have stronger alternatives (ie. better BATNAs).
In such situations, I tend to figure out ways to verify these claims before giving into them or changing my own strategy. It’s also good to not shy away from the discussion and ask for proof in support of these facts or claims.
Feel free to make the first offer - In situations of ambiguity, I never feel shy to make the first offer. The person who makes the first offer often leads anchoring and adjustment.
I would also suggest not being afraid to go aggressive on your first offer. High offers often end in high final settlements. As many wise people have said “If you don’t ask, you won’t get it!”
Make a good relationship with the “other” side- Invest in building a good relationship with the other party (parties). When they know you well and have trust in you, they are much more likely to agree with your offer and refrain from any unethical behavior.
What is your negotiation process? What else would you add to the above list?
Oh and remember, life is a journey, sprinkled with negotiations!
Was our conversation a seed for this blog?