Determine what you want
Before setting foot in a negotiation you must establish precisely what you want to obtain. Understand your needs and determine your goals in advance. Knowing your limit will prevent you from signing an unfavorable deal and making unnecessary compromises.
Know your counterpart
The more you know about the other party, the greater chances you have to reach a mutually favorable agreement. That’s the ultimate principle in marketing and negotiating. Hence, do your homework and find out everything you can about your counterpart.
Acknowledge your value
One of the biggest mistakes you can make during a negotiation is not acknowledging your worth. This will determine you to make gratuitous concessions. Plus, your counterpart may take advantage of you, coercing you into signing a disparaging contract.
Aim high and hope for the best. All proficient negotiators are animated, upbeat individuals. They’re convinced that if you expect more, you will get more. You must never start negotiating with a negative attitude. Instead, be convinced that you and the other party will get a good deal and that the negotiation will be successful. Don’t lose hope every time you stumble upon an obstacle!
Never get emotionally involved
You must keep in mind that negotiations are never personal. Most amateur negotiators regard this process as subjective and they get involved emotionally. That’s why they’re never successful. If you want to reach a good agreement, you must keep a distance. Some boundaries must never be crossed, and although you may not like your counterpart, that doesn’t mean you can assume they have something personal with you. Also, keep your mind clear and deal with all the matters patiently and calmly. Be detached even when the other party can’t.
Don’t walk away happy you tricked you counterpart
There are many unscrupulous negotiators who won’t sign a deal until they obtain exactly what they want, which is wrong. It’s not professional to see your counterpart as your enemy and you shouldn’t try to trick them into signing an unfavorable deal. If you’re not truthful, business partners won’t work with you in the future and that might affect your reputation. Word of mouth spreads really fast and soon you will be known as a two-faced, corrupt negotiator. Such a reputation will destroy your career, thus you need to ask yourself if a couple of small victories are worth your reputation.
Business people wrongfully assume that mutual settlements are not good solutions for business negotiators. Let’s not forget what a negotiation means though; the deal you’re planning to close needs to benefit you and your counterpart, so you can’t expect to win it all. Great skills are accumulated in time, and win-win solutions are excellent techniques to get a good bargain.
Your worst enemy in a negotiation – stress
You’re probably all set to attend your very first business negotiation with people that are more skilled than you. Yet, how do you know they’re better? Did you talk to them before? No; so stop assuming things and get down to business. There’s no time to feel stressed or anxious; the more accurate and fluent you are in your claims, the better chances you have to get a clean deal.
There are hundreds of ways to negotiate with both business partners and regular people. The key ingredient is to be confident, even when you have no idea what you’re talking about. Talk less, nod your head, look counterparts in the eye, don’t showcase emotions through body language, and you’ll get out safe and sound from a challenging negotiation. In time, your level of confidence will increase, the process will stop being so nerve-racking, and emotions will become ancient history.
Updated on 4. March 2019
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