Finessing Your Way to Yes
People who master the dos and donts of negotiation are able to successfully position themselves as valuable contributors to the organization where they workand to advance their own careers.
The best negotiators are successful in managing their emotional response by maintaining their balance and staying in control. They have figured out how to connect with their values and articulate purpose and meaning in every word and action. They are great listeners and practice the art of clarifying questions. Those who are able to manage the other sides denial, anxiety and anger by acknowledgingwithout always agreeinggenerally come out ahead at the bargaining table. Most important, they have mastered the art of using their power constructively. Here are a few other negotiation pointers:
1. Approach the discussion with confidence. Any sign of doubt will turn into an immediate bargaining disadvantage. Even body language has to be taken into accountthis is no time for knuckle-cracking.
2. Show that youre grateful for the meeting, but dont pander. Your time is valuable, too, and you are there because you have something to offer.
3. Leave the negotiating target room to wiggle. Dont get yourself into a take it or leave it situation. Go into the meeting knowing what youre willing to give up.
4. Pin them down. Make the other party agree to a timetable and dont leave the room without some agreement on the follow-up. Dont give out your home number, which will appear too eager or desperate. Office phone and e-mail is plenty.
5. The final offer. If you reach a point in the negotiation when you are prepared to state your final offer, mean it and understand there may be no turning back.
As you read this issue of NotaBene, I urge you to be on the look-out for ideas that could improve your skills and make you a better, more effective negotiator.
For further information about the School of Business & Technology at Webster University, please visit www.webster.edu/sbt/dean.
Benjamin Ola. Akande