How do you know when a business negotiation is successful?
If I may guess,
A business negotiation is successful when the parties involved reach an equitable agreement.
As an individual or business professional, at some point, you’ll have to negotiate and reach an agreement with either your customers, clients, or employees. Though not everyone is born with innate negotiation skills, enhancing your negotiation skill has an enormous payoff, says Harvard Business School Professor Michael Wheeler in the online course Negotiation Mastery.
Being a good negotiator helps you land opportunities that may otherwise slip off your finger. Notwithstanding, the best business negotiation is mutually beneficial to the parties involved.
Here are 4 simple tips to upscale your negotiation skills.
1. Listen and hear the other party involved.
I am amazed at how people try to dominate and talk the other out of the business negotiation process. In most cases, the other party feels unheard and keeps their opinion. The best negotiation is the one that allows both sides to win.
Keeping silent in negotiation is not a sign of indecision. Rather this is one of the shrewdest negotiation strategies. During negotiation, refuse to give in to the urge to think about what you will say while the other person is still talking. Instead, listen and summarize the other party’s point to be sure you understand.
Maintaining silence allows you to understand the participant’s opinion better and reach a favorable consensus.
2. When discussing money, use concrete numbers instead of a range.
If business negotiation includes selling a product and you tell the buyer that you are looking at getting between $600 to $800 for it, there is a higher chance you would get a lower price.
The reason is that you have just told the other party how low they can go in their final offer. Even if you know you would accept something lower, do not let the other party know from the onset.
Also, be wary of accepting the first price. If you accept a price too quickly, the buyer might feel their offer is too high and attempt to get out of the deal.
In addition, don’t limit your choice to a single buyer. This could deter the only buyer, as people love competition in deals. Have a list of buyers to select from and choose the best.
3. Don’t rush the business negotiation process.
Arriving at a good win in a business negotiation might take more time than you expect. At some point, you will be tempted to rush the process, but this is not the best way to go about it. Negotiations take time, especially if you want them to go smoothly. Take the time to establish a real relationship with the other party, advised Molly Fletcher, consultant and author of A Winner’s Guide to Negotiating: How Conversation Gets Deals Done (McGraw-Hill, 2014).
“Share a little piece of personal information that signals your openness and desire for connection,” she said. “Doing so can shift a negotiation from an adversarial battle to a productive conversation.”
Successful negotiations take time.
4. The best business negotiation lets both sides win.
No doubt, you look forward to winning in your business negotiations. However, negotiation is not a competition. As such, it should have a win-win outcome. If you have a win-lose mindset, you may kill the chance for repeat business with your partner.
The fairest deal is for the parties involved to feel they got something out of the business negotiation process.
When you approach each business deal with a win-win mentality, it will lead to fruitful partnerships now and in the future.
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