In business as in life, you do not get what you deserve you get what you negotiate.
The term negotiation refers to a strategic discussion intended to resolve an issue in a way that both parties find acceptable. Negotiations involve give and take, which means one or both parties will usually need to make some concessions. Negotiations can take place between buyers and sellers, employers and employees, two or more governments and other parties.
Negotiations involve two or more parties who come together to reach some end goal that is agreeable to all those involved. One party will put its position forward, while the other will either accept the conditions presented or counter with its own position. The process continues until both parties agree to a resolution or negotiations break off without one.
Experienced negotiators will often try to learn as much as possible about the other party’s position before a negotiation begins, including what the strengths and weaknesses of that position are, how to prepare to defend their positions and any counter arguments the other party will likely make.
The length of time it takes for negotiations to conclude depends on the circumstances. Negotiation can take as little as a few minutes or in more complex cases, much longer.
Negotiating can take place between individuals, businesses, governments and in any other situation where two parties have competing interests.
Some people may be born negotiators, but many of us are not. Here are few tips that can help.
Justify you position. Do not just walk into negotiations without being able to back up your position. Bring information to show that you have done your research and you are committed to reaching a deal.
Put yourself in their shoes. Remember that the other side has things it wants out of the deal, too. What can you offer that will help them reach their goal without giving away more than you want to or can afford to?
Keep your emotions in check. It is easy to get caught up in the moment and be swayed by your personal feelings, especially ones like anger and frustration. But do not let your emotions cause you to lose sight of your goal.
Know when to walk away. Before you begin the negotiation process, it is a good idea to know what you will accept as a bare minimum and when you would rather walk away from the table than continue to bargain. There is no use trying to reach a deal if both sides are hopelessly dug in. Even if you do not want to end negotiations entirely, pausing them can give everyone involved a chance to regroup and possibly return to the table with a fresh perspective.
Some of the key skills of a good negotiator are the ability to listen, to think under pressure, to clearly articulate their point of view and to be willing to compromise within reason.