Many people tend to avoid negotiation due to the negative connotation that it brings that relates to conflicts. However, a successful negotiation eventually leads to a win-win situation where parties reach an agreement. You don't have to be aggressive in a negotiation to win it. Your aim is not to win and someone losses. Contribute fairly in the negotiation and you will gain more in the long run. Sounds difficult?
Fret not, here are top 5 tips to help you negotiate successfully:
1. Have your facts ready
Get ready with a series of factual information. Conduct your research and gather as much information as you can that is relevant to the negotiation subject. And start asking yourself tough questions you think you might be bombarded with by the other parties. Gearing up yourself with facts and getting ready for the negotiation instills confidence in yourself to do well in the negotiation process.
2. Decide what you want to achieve before negotiating
Think of what the ideal scenario is that you are willing to accept and think of the worst case scenario in which you will have to walk away from the deal. Great negotiators know what they want to achieve before they begin. They know what their priorities are, which areas to concede, and which areas to walk away. Closing a bad deal is worse than losing one.
3. Aim for a win-win scenario
Often, people think of negotiation as a zero-sum game, which is a win-lose situation. Successful negotiators aim for a win-win situation on both sides, which is the ideal scenario. Both parties should come to a happy agreement eventually to meet their individual goals. Factors that aren't important to one party may be vital to another, if both parties could concede in the areas that are not as important to themselves but could greatly benefit the other party, it will lead up to a possible win-win scenario.
4. Treat the other party fairly
Frequently, a negotiation breaks down as one party feels that the other wasn't treating them fairly. It could be due to emotions or ego that led things astray and ending the negotiation in a buff will make yourself look bad. It is important to keep cool as you want to maintain a reputation as a fair dealer when the next negotiation comes along.
5. Aim to get a decision within a reasonable timeline
All of the planning, strategising, and researching done are meaningless without a proper agreement between both parties. This happens when one side just can't get to a decision. So be prepared in advance to set a timeline and criteria and make decision part of the negotiation process. Be clear to the other party as well, the reasons for the stipulated timeline. Do it early as hurdles might delay getting a final agreement approved.
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Renee Tan, the writer, is a consultant and ACTA-certified trainer for corporate organisations and educational institutions who specialises in the following: 21st Century Skills, Personal Mastery & Peak Performance, Communication Skills, Innovative Thinking, Entrepreneurship, Design Thinking, Personal Branding, Problem Solving & Decision Making, Service Excellence, Effective Networking, Public Speaking & Presentations, Team-Building & Cohesion, TetraMap®, Profiling, Career Guidance, Interview Skills, Sales Techniques, Negotiation Skills, and Brain-Based Learning.
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