Negotiation is one of the key skills a businessperson needs. It involves working with other people and coming to an agreement about something both parties want or require.
Negotiations is all about relationships, so it is vital that both parties come to an agreement early and throughout the negotiation process in order to maximize win-win results.
1. Know Yourself
Self-knowledge is a crucial part of life. To gain true understanding, one must explore their deepest insecurities, put themselves through rigorous trials, and reflect deeply on themselves and their life experiences.
Exploring yourself is a life-long journey, one that can bring both fulfillment and freedom. Understanding yourself better can lead to better decisions, less inner conflict and increased success in life.
2. Know Your Opponent
Sun Tzu, an influential fifth-century military strategist, wrote that an effective weapon against enemies lies in understanding them and knowing them well.
To negotiate effectively, it is vital to know your opponent and their negotiating style. Doing this will enable you to counter their tactics and reach a mutually beneficial deal.
3. Be Creative
Creativity is essential when trying to reach a mutually beneficial resolution of any conflict or issue, yet negotiators who lack creativity often end up accepting less than they could have achieved had they exerted greater effort.
Before approaching a negotiation, it’s crucial that you generate as many options as possible in advance – this should include options that address both parties’ interests while also proposing strategies for finding differences among them.
4. Be a Good Listener
Listening is a crucial skill in business, whether negotiating with your boss or colleagues. Being attentive makes you stand out from others; by practicing it regularly you can build it over time.
One key to being an excellent listener is limiting distractions and giving the speaker your full attention. For instance, this might involve switching off your phone or closing your computer in order to focus on what they have to say.
5. Be Flexible
Flexibility allows you to respond swiftly and effectively to changes in the business environment, taking full advantage of market opportunities or products which suddenly gain in popularity.
Whilst it can be tempting to make unreasonable demands, the best negotiators know how important it is to back their claims with evidence and information – making negotiations far more likely to produce positive outcomes for all involved parties.
6. Be Emotionally Stable
Emotions play an essential part of negotiation, yet can make success more challenging than necessary. Our emotions may cause us to react in ways that are counter-productive to effective negotiations.
Strong emotional stability can help to avoid these adverse responses and help facilitate successful negotiations. Being in control of your own emotions allows for easier navigating of negotiations processes.
7. Be Optimistic
Negotiation can be challenging and intimidating, yet having a positive mindset will lead to better deals being struck and increased money in your wallet and greater confidence at work. Be optimistic in approaching each negotiation session for maximum returns!
Optimism is essential to successful business negotiations, but you need to be wary about how you express it – the best approach is being pragmatic and realistic from day one.
8. Be Prepared
Being prepared is an invaluable skill that you must acquire and practice on an ongoing basis in order to avoid situations that arise and ensure the continued growth of your business.
Make sure that when presenting and negotiating your case, it benefits both sides equally. Be sure to have an in-depth knowledge of their respective goals so as to achieve maximum effectiveness when representing and negotiating on their behalf.
9. Be Perceptive
An understanding of what your counterpart is thinking and saying is key to successful negotiations, just as knowing their needs is just as essential as understanding your own strengths and weaknesses.
Make sure to add some humor into the mix – it could make all the difference in achieving a win-win solution!
10. Be Flexible
One key to successful negotiation lies in being adaptable, or flexible. That means being willing to adjust your approach according to both the needs of your opponent and of the situation at hand.
Negotiating for flexible working hours requires being strategic and well-planned, along with providing evidence for your request. In particular, building a business case for it is key.