Negotiation is certainly a tricky game, and a lot of it can depend upon the emotions of the negotiating party. In a way, it can be comparable to a good game of poker, you don’t really know the hand of the other player, and you just raise your bet depending on what you have, and what you think your “opponent” doesn’t have.
Negotiating can be done in almost any area of our life. We can negotiate to get a good price on an item in a garage sale, or we can negotiate to close a million dollar deal. Whatever it is, stocking up in negotiation tips can help you get what you deserve, or even more. Below are five of the most basic (and the most important) negotiation tools you can use for any situation in life.
Top 5 Negotiation Tips
Understand Your Communication Skills
There are three things you need to understand. First, you need to know how your behavior will affect others. Second, know that everyone has their own way of communicating. And third, effective negotiators are those who can change their communication style to the needs of the listener. There are generally four kinds of communicators:
- Dominant – These people are good at decision-making and they love being in control of their environment. They are confident but can also appear arrogant and intimidating.
- Influence – They are similar to the Dominant in getting what they want but they use a less direct method. They can convince and motivate, rather than coerce.
- Steadiness – These people usually feel that instead of having change, it is better for everyone to just work harder while maintaining the status quo. They are good listeners and consider things before responding.
- Conscientious – They are introverted and reserved, but they are also task and control focused. When negotiating with these people, statements must be factual and straight to the point.
- By understanding these communication styles, and your own, you will be able to better deal with different types of people by being able to say the right things at the right time.
Many negotiations can fall apart because the negotiating party failed to prepare their case. When negotiating, it is vital to put together your supporting facts and data, while anticipating potential questions that may come out in the course of your conversation. Knowing what questions might be asked will allow you to prepare answers that will steer the negotiations towards your side. Second, you must also be ready with a back up plan. In case your expectations don’t happen as you wanted, you must know what else you can offer to save the situation in going to your favor. If a back up plan is not prepared, it may mean having to accept what the other party wants even if it puts you on the losing end.
Say What You Want
Once you have analyzed what type of person you are dealing with, the first step towards beginning negotiation is by saying exactly what you want. If you yourself are unsure about your demand, then the person you are talking to will take the opportunity to fill in what they want without sounding aggressive. To avoid this occurrence, say what you want in an assertive way, and let the other person know that you mean business.
Negotiating doesn’t mean arguing. An effective negotiator will always know how and when to listen to the other party. Allow them to talk because this gives you insight to what they are planning to achieve. Ask open-ended questions so you can get the most information as possible. The knowledge will also give you an edge to better negotiate your position.
Take Your Time
Most of the time, people get impatient with the negotiation process and they lose a half-won battle because they are too quick to talk or immediately agree to terms. It is always best to retain your composure and take your time to think over what has been said. Also, if the other party needs some time to think as well, don’t rush them. The more thought that is put into the process, the more likely the results will be better and in your favor.
Additional Negotiation Tips
Silence can be a powerful tool. It can get people to offer you a better option without you having to say anything
Be Willing To Walk
Once people see that you are willing to let go of the deal, you might just get a better offer. Before going in, know your limitations and see if you can let go of what you are negotiating for if the terms aren’t right.
Negotiation can often turn into a battle of wits, so making sure you are fully equipped will help you achieve your goals. As the saying goes “You don’t get what you deserve, you get what you negotiate.”
So, how are your negotiation skills? Do you have any negotiation stories to share?
This post was written by YFS.
Great tips, I’m a big fan of silence. Often it is better just to let people talk and see what they have to say. The longer you can hold out the more you get out of them.
Silence is key. Say your point then shut up. Let the other person speak. Many people talk themselves out of a better deal
These are great tips. Silence is a very good tip. Another one is to let the other party name the first price. For example, if you are negociating selling something or a salary, the first party to name a dollar amount is at a disadvantage.
Great tip! If the party I’m negotiating with is pressing me to name a number I typically provide them a range. This keeps them guessing. Also, before naming a range make sure you know how much the position is paying. Research is your friend
Discipline plays a part in negotiations because you may succomb the heat of the moment.
Yes.. the heat of the moment can get ya. That’s why someone should perform mock interviews before the actual interview.
I can’t emphasize enough how important the preparation step that you mentioned is to negotiation. I agree communication is another big one. I guess if you prepare but can’t communicate the idea or move the discussion towards consensus, it’s still a bad negotiation then.
Preparation is 95% of the battle! Unfortunately, good communication skills are harder to master than preparation but with the right amount of preparation you can mask your bad communication skills. You kind of have to be an actor.
Silence is a powerful tactic, critical in a sales situation. I would also add practicing as a useful strategy for long-term success. Great article YFS!
I’m still working on the silence part but, yes saying your piece and shutting up is often times the best thing to do
Silence is golden. The worst thing is to talk too much. Listen and speak in the ratio which nature intended – one mouth and two ears.
And yes, negotiation is a two-way process. As with a job interview, your purpose is (a) to sell yourself and (b) to see whether you want to work for this outfit. Only if both are successful will it be a happy relationship.
Great line! “1 mouth 2 ears”
Doing your research/being prepared is vital! It can create a lot of leverage 🙂 With communication it’s also important to read your component’s body language. You can learn a lot from the unspoken word…
Body language is definitely another sign if you’re doing well or good during an interview. Great suggestion.
You are definitely right about silence and how it can be a powerful negotiation skill. When i was buying a new car i was at a point where the deal they offered was in the range i was looking for. But for some reason, i just paused for couple of minutes which created a total silence. Before i could speak the dealer cut another $300. I did not realize how powerful it is for not saying a word back then.
Nice savings! I bet you started being silent much more often during negotiations after that.
I know another kind of negotiation, pleading negotiation, “I’ll pay $20, please,” please $20″, “no please please give me for $20”, “come on, it’s $20” 🙂 This doesn’t require any skills, just patience and sticking to the demand.
Good one. Sometimes the begging and sticking to your guns can pay off. I have used this in the past but have only found it works well with people I know like friends and family.
Bahahha… that works only on special occasions