Show me yours and I’ll show you mine

Successful negotiators believe everything is negotiable. Is it? There are situations where this may not be so, but it is a useful attitude to adopt. Obviously, the manager who believes everything is negotiable is less likely to give up in the face of strong opposition than the manager who does not hold this belief.Here are some tactics for cond-ucting successful negotiations. The range of choices open to both parties and the type of consequences you are prepared to accept will determine which tactics you choose. Be careful – what you put out you’ll get back eventually. Be direct. Know what it is that you want and ask for it. Allow plenty of time to conduct negotiations. Don’t put pressure on yourself, which may cause you to seek less than you need. Rushed decisions are usually poor decisions. Promote trust by demonstrating your willingness to co-operate especially early in the proceedings. Look for other options. Attempt to make all parties feel that they can win something. Declare a desire to seek win/win outcomes. Ask the other party to state their opening offer first. Make your first requests high, but within the limits of the other party’s ability to meet your requests. State your major requests at the beginning and use the minor issues as options for later trade-offs. Introduce unimportant issues as important ones and concede them later to give the other party a sense of gain. Ask the other party to join with you in resolving the issue. Ask how you can assist them to meet their needs. Ask them how they can assist you to meet your needs. Ask them to explain the rationale behind unreasonable requests. Ask them how their requests are fair to all parties and/or all stakeholders affected by the possible outcomes. Show how your requests are fair to all parties and/or all stakeholders affected by the possible outcomes. Test the climate by asking hypothetical questions. What if....? Suppose that I were to....? Say if you were to....? What would happen if we were both to ....? If I was prepared to do.... would you be pre-pared to do....? Propose suggestions that advance the negotiation. Respond to their proposals with counter proposals. Re-present your same proposal but in a different form – one that incorporates the expressed interests, requests and limitations of the other person. Clarify time limits, financial limits, limits of authority and any other limits early in the negotiation process. Set conditions before making offers. Trade requests - exchange things you need for things they need. State the benefits for them if they accept your proposal. Combine an unacceptable request with a request that they are likely to concede. Make one conditional upon the other. If close to achieving your objectives, but in a deadlock situation, suggest that you split the difference. Overwhelm the other party with lots of information so as to end their argument before they begin. Identify the objections the other party holds and explore with them the reality of these things happening. Say, “If you do this ... then we have a deal”. Agree what you have agreed – summarise it and write it down. Agree on an action plan. Ask them what could be other ways to view the situation that would serve all of us better? Ask them what others meanings could be attached to the situation?From the international best-selling books, ‘You Lead, They’ll Follow. How to inspire, lead and manage people. Really.’ Volumes 1, 2 and 3 by Daniel Kehoe published by McGraw Hill. for on-line orders. Daniel Kehoe provides a range of innovative tools for leadership, people management and business improvement to small, medium and large organizations including the You Lead, They’ll Follow Experience® and Systematic-Innovation® - one of the best ideas management systems on the planet. See T 08 9477 1135 E

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