Did you know that great business negotiations skills take time to develop? We all want to be expert negotiators, close deals, and make a name for ourselves. Things are not that easy, and if you want something from life, you just have to go get it. Chris Voss, former hostage negotiator for the FBI turns his experience into essential business tips with “Secrets of Successful Business Negotiations”. Showing an interest and listening to the other party using brief verbal replies and body language are of the utmost importance. Phrases like ‘yes’ ‘I see’ and ‘ok’ are a clear sign you’re interested in what your counterpart has to say. The more your other party talks, the easier it will be for you to gain control, assess weaknesses, and get the job done.
One of the most important strategies in business negotiations : Play close attention
Prior to entering a negotiation, you must know what you want. This doesn’t mean that what your competitors have to say is not important. Listen to their ideas and try to understand their points of view as well. If you want to buy a car but there’s not price displayed in the window, don’t start saying how much money you’re willing to offer. Go to the seller instead, and ask about the price. When it comes to business negotiations, things are similar. Let your opponent unveil his position prior to making an offer.
Aggressive negotiators are everywhere; they set up a goal and no matter what happens they won’t back down. How can you win when you’re not even willing to negotiate? If you’re not flexible, you won’t be able to reach an agreement that satisfies both parties. Find a middle ground between you and your opponent, and reap as many benefits as you can for the business meeting. Rather than focus only on your goal and be stubborn, try to identify your objectives and be flexible to alternatives.
Do you want a company to offer you a salary that reflects your value? Do you want a higher status? After you’ve answered these questions, remember that every position is binary- you have it or you don’t. There are plenty of other ways of getting a higher salary, that’s why reaching an agreement is the right thing to do.
In some other situations flexibility means reassessing your tactics and determining what works for you and what doesn’t. “Flexibility on the choice of tactics is imperative” says Dr. Chester Karras. As far as business negotiations are concerned, we must agree that they’re all different. We deal with different people and we must come up with new goal each and every time.
Don’t allow your feelings to influence your judgment
We can’t negotiate without involving emotions. However, this doesn’t mean you have to exhibit anxiety in front of your competition. The best way to negotiate effectively is to stay impartial. You have nothing personal that ties you to your partners, so try to stay professional. Focus on your goal and don’t let them intimidate you in any way. Bestselling author Stuart Diamond says that emotion is every negotiator’s worst enemy.
As humans, we stop listening when we’re emotional. We focus more on our feelings and we have the tendency to overlook our goals. When we’re focusing on our thoughts and emotions, we forget the purpose of a negotiation and we might even agree to deals that won’t bring us any benefits.
Concentrate on your interests
We all have interests, especially when we’re talking about negotiations. To fulfill these interests we need to use smart strategies. Roger Fisher and his “Getting to YES” NY Times bestseller, introduces the ‘interest-based negotiation’ term. He says it’s the ultimate power tool for antagonist negotiations where the other side has the advantage. Originally published over 30 years ago and recently revised the book that talks about conflict resolution and how to reach agreements.
Suggest solutions that can satisfy both parties
You can’t become a successful negotiator if you’re not creative. Creativity is the ability to recognize and generate new ideas that can be employed to solve issues. Based on a summary from the CSUN, to be innovative you must view things in various ways and from different perspectives. Hence, creating solutions can greatly impact your negotiation abilities. A creative individual can create a business deal that brings about win-win scenarios for both parties.
What tips do you have for successful business negotiations?