Negotiating skills is an area that business owners must adapt to effectively run their business. Some business owners are more skilled at negotiating than others. Those who lack negotiating skills may be required to hire someone who is sharper and well trained in this area, or they should simply learn some negotiation skills themselves.
This is an area that needs to be learned and implemented into the overall business responsibilities of mid to upper management to ensure that sales do not become stagnant, which can be overcome by being able to continue to keep ongoing sales opportunities flowing through the pipeline, which is possible when good negotiation skills are always at work.
If you continue to walk away from a negotiation with too many of your interest unattended or left on the table, you may appear weak by the other party, or unable to skillfully protect the key points that are important to you – allowing the other party to pluck them right out of your hand, and leave you completely unsatisfied with the outcome of the transaction.
Having an ability to constantly win over customers and close deals is a key component and the lifeblood of any business. If you’re struggling with being able to negotiate well, below are some strategies that you might find helpful.
General Negotiation Tips
One of the best ways to learn negotiating strategies is to simply find a resource that offers negotiating training skills and refer to it on an ongoing, as-needed basis. Once these skills are learned, you can continue to practice them until you’ve mastered them. Since the people that you may be negotiating with will have different goals, different styles of negotiation and different objectives, it’s best to always be sensitive to areas that are of great importance to them as well as to you. The key is to weigh the pros and the cons against what it is that you’re negotiating for.
Another quick tip is to have an understanding as to whether or not you’re negotiating a one-time transaction, a long-term transaction or if you’re forming a relationship and its long-term impact.
Below are four negotiating strategies that can assist you with enhancing your negotiation skills:
1. Assessment – Have an initial preliminary meeting to perform an assessment of the entire situation. Then determine any conflicts that may be associated with the outcomes and the effects (both pros and cons) that it may have on either party.
2. Make additional preparation based on your company’s objectives – Make sure you have a list of each point that needs to be negotiated and a clear understanding of all of the parameters surrounding each of the negotiating points. Consider making adjustments where possible. This shows the other party that you’re flexible in certain areas – and they will likely return the favor.
3. Make preparation based on what the other party has an interest in – “Keep in mind why the other party is asking for specific terms and conditions prior to beginning the negotiation process,” said Negotiations Training Institute. This will allow you to point out any pros and cons and how the outcomes will affect your business or your particular situation.
4. Identify a win-win – If you look out for win-win situations, you will be able to devise a strategy that is not only mutually beneficial, but that will allow both parties to walk away without feeling as though someone has been slighted. This shows that you not only have forethought but that you’re concerned about the other party’s interest too. And, that you also took the time to figure out the best outcome for all parties involved. You’ll also be seen in a good light by the other party too.
To conclude, it’s always great to keep in mind that no one wants to walk away from a deal feeling as though they were unheard, didn’t get what they really wanted, or that something that was important to them was not addressed. Learning how to negotiate in a tactful way that results in a win-win for everybody is always the best way to negotiate. Once these skills are learned, continue to find ways to make improvements in this area.