Successful Negotiations

Negotiation is finding the best solution to a certain problem or situation. So whether it is in the boardroom or bedroom, courtroom or living room, we all face situations where we have to negotiate about something. Negotiation may involve two or more people. The process entails putting all options on the table and finally coming up with an answer.

What makes negotiations challenging is when the other person or persons have totally opposing views from yours. Another factor that makes negotiations quite difficult is when both or all options are good, but then you have to come up with only one solution.

Success in negotiation is not only getting your “preferred decision” approved but keeping everybody on the negotiation table at peace with your preference.

With these in mind, here now are the steps to successful negotiations. These steps can be applied to personal negotiations (spouse, children, family members, friends), corporate negotiations (board members, staff, leaders, union, congregation), or sales negotiations (whether one-on-one or group).

1. Understand where each person on the negotiation table is coming from.

This can be done by doing your research. Find out everything you can about them and how they feel about certain situations, then, incorporate all these in what you will present during the negotiation.

2. Study and understand what the bottom-line is: What is the main problem? What needs to be achieved?

The success of negotiation lies more in the pre-negotiation phase than the actual negotiation. If you do your homework well, chances are you will have a good presentation. Study all angles and be sure to cover all these.

3. Plan your presentation or talk based on the information you gathered.

The person or persons you are negotiating with should not feel threatened by your preference. Instead, they should see you as an ally more than an opponent.

4. When presenting your side, let everyone know that you are there with everybody’s best interest in mind.

You have to let them know that you did your research and that you know what each one’s concerns are. Tell them that all these concerns are incorporated in what you are going to present.

5. Be ready for feedback, reactions, and oppositions.

Before you present, let the people on the negotiation table know that you will only entertain questions or reactions after you finish presenting your side. Be very objective and avoid being emotional when you are dealing with oppositions. Always let the opposing party know that you understand where she is coming from.

6. Be open for some changes or modifications of your views and preferences.

Be willing to listen to their views and make the necessary adjustments.

7. Find a common ground.

Look for a common denominator that everyone can agree to.

If you are a Christian, be careful not to put yourself in situations where you have to compromise your belief or the Word of God. Don’t even get into any partnerships or business deals with those who are not fellow believers or those who will not use God’s Word as the ultimate standard.