Top 10 Negotiation Skills
Refers to your “best alternative to a negotiated agreement,” or the best outcome you can expect if you fail to reach agreement at the bargaining table with your counterpart.
An evaluation of your BATNA is critical if you are to establish the threshold at which you will reject an offer.
Effective negotiators determine their BATNAs before talks begin.
This is a professional note extracted from an online article.
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Carefully negotiate how you will negotiate in advance. Discussing procedural issues will clear the way for much more focused talks.
Don’t assume you’re all on the same page when it comes to determining when to meet, who should be present, what your agenda will be, and so on.
You and your counterpart may be more collaborative and likely to reach an agreement if you spend even just a few minutes trying to get to know each other.
If you’re negotiating over email, even a brief introductory phone call may make a difference. This is one of the most valuable negotiation skills to master.
Resist the common urge to think about what you’re going to say next while your counterpart is talking and listen carefully to her arguments, then paraphrase what you believe she said to check your understanding.
Acknowledge any difficult feelings, like frustration, behind the message. Not only are you likely to acquire valuable information, but the other party may mimic your exemplary listening skills.
Ask lots of questions that are likely to get helpful answers.
Avoid asking “yes or no” questions and leading questions, such as “Don’t you think that’s a great idea?” and craft neutral questions that encourage detailed responses, such as “Can you tell me about the challenges you’re facing this quarter?”
Try to identify issues that your counterpart cares deeply about that you value less. Then propose making a concession on that issue in exchange for a concession from her on an issue you value highly.
The first number mentioned in a negotiation, however arbitrary, exerts a powerful influence on the negotiation that follows.
You can avoid being the next victim of the anchoring bias by making the first offer (or offers) and trying to anchor talks in your preferred direction.
If your counterpart rejects all of them, ask him to tell you which one he liked best and why. Then work on your own to improve the offer, or try to brainstorm with the other party an option that pleases you both.
In essence, a bet about how future events will unfold.
Works best when negociations get stuck because of disagreements on how certain scenarios will play over time.
E. g.: if you doubt a contractor’s claims that he can finish your home renovation project in 3 months, propose a contingent contract that will penalize him for late completion and/or reward him for early completion.
Consider agreeing to meet at regular intervals throughout the life of the contract to check in and, if necessary, renegotiate.
In addition, adding a dispute-resolution clause that calls for the use of mediation or arbitration if a conflict arises can be a wise move.
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While making your final decision, keep in mind that:
Companies like you to submit early in the negotiation and be done with it, so it's best not to fall in their traps and pressure tactics.
Respectfully moving forward, showing transparency and maturity signals to the company that you are not just playing games, and are moving towards a final decision. Being honest, open and communicative is the key.
Negotiating is all about relationship, with communication being the bedrock.
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They aim to reconcile a counterpart’s problems with the need to maintain the peace for society at large.
Using active-listening techniques, maintaining an open-minded approach, and building rapport to influence one’s counterpart are some of the skills used to resolve conflict and this skills can also be used on other kinds of negotiation.
The most successful negotiators don't entertain dirty tricks in negotiation but instead strive to reach agreements that are satisfactory to both parties.
But if you find yourself on...
Used on negotiators who travel long distances: to start meetings while the negotiator's concentration is impeded due to jet lag or fatigue. Jet lag seriously impairs judgement.
Tip for the negotiator: Travel early and leave time for recuperation before meeting the other party. Where you suspect your hosts like to be hospitable, keep news of your early arrival quiet.
A dirty trick often used against people visiting other cultures.
The approach of "but we always do it this way over here" can be difficult to counter if you're not prepared for it.
Tip for the negotiator: If you suspect this approach in advance, have with you a local expert who knows the customs.
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