Negotiation is an everyday tool. There are many times in the day when you are faced with a difficult decision. It may be whether to walk to work or drive. It might even be whether to treat yourself to a chocolate bar or not. Every time you are faced with a choice and make a decision you have actually completed a negotiation in your head.
Negotiation is an essential skill in the world of business. It is also a skill which you may feel you do not possess. In fact, you simply need to apply the same approach used in every day decisions to any professional negotiation. The following questions should also be asked before undertaking a negotiation:
Do you have the authority to compromise?
This is an important question. If you do not have the ability to yield on certain points in order to reach a mutually agreeable decision then the negotiation has no value. If this is the case then the meeting will have to be re-conducted. This is a waste of time to all concerned. The question should not just be asked of yourself. You need to know the person you are meeting with has the same power.
Are you aware of your opponent’s strategy?
Before any negotiation you need to know what you would like to achieve from the meeting and what you would be prepared to accept. Although this is an excellent starting, it is not enough. It is essential to assess what your opponent is after and, if possible, what they will settle for. Knowing their aim will allow you to plan the counter argument and ensure you are ready to meet and hopefully come to a mutually agreeable solution. It may sometimes be difficult to establish what the other party is after but looking at the history of the relationship and any past negotiations should help.
Do you know the advantages and disadvantages to both sides of the argument?
Being prepared for a negotiation means creating your reasoned argument. This can only be reached by looking at the pros and cons of a particular course of action and deciding what is the best course for you. From a justifiable argument is fairly easy to construct. Being successful in a negotiation requires you to also understand the pros and cons of your opponent’s argument. When you understand this you will be in the best position not only to see where they are coming from but also to negotiate successfully for what is really important to them. This will ensure you give away nothing more than you need to.
Are you aware of body language?
The position of the body or the movement of the arms can provide a lot of information into what you or your opponent is really thinking or feeling. You need to understand the nuances of various stances and learn to control your reactions. Body language can show nervousness, aggressiveness or a lack of confidence. After learning to control these reactions in your own body you will be able to spot them in your opponents and use this to your advantage. It is also important to know if there are any cultural differences or traditions which need to be observed.
What is your bottom line?
An essential part of any negotiation is the ability to know when to walk away. It is vitally important that you know before going into a meeting what is the minimum you are prepared to accept. For some negotiations this may mean accepting the deal as you cannot afford to walk away. You should avoid disclosing this fact to anyone in order to achieve the best deal possible.
Business managers should master the art of negotiations. They should know exactly what’s best for their companies and what’s not. Dealing with all kinds of investors and convincing them to accept a certain deal is tougher that it seems. A lot of persuasion is required, as well as expertise. Every claim that you make has to be backed up by solid proof, otherwise your opponent won’t trust that your offer is real. Be genuine, stay focused on the facts and you have the highest chances of landing the best business offer.
By Davis Miller and TheGapPartnership.com!