Chester Karrass once said: “In life you don’t get what you deserve, you get what you negotiate.” Whether you like it or not, negotiations play a vital part in your daily business transactions. As a business professional, negotiating is something you have to do on a daily basis. In fact, coming to a negotiation table totally unprepared will most likely lead you to getting pressured or intimidated by your counterpart. Consequently, you will be forced into accepting a deal you do not wholeheartedly agree with and such failure could seriously affect the company’s growth and survival.
That is why it is imperative that you always come to the negotiation table prepared especially since the negotiation process contains so many elements of the unknowable. By arming yourself with the information you need to avoid unpleasant surprises, you will be able to successfully use negotiations to close deals. In addition, you will be able to use negotiations as a means by which to develop lasting relations with your counterpart.
As a negotiator, you will have to take note of negotiation risks. More importantly, you will also need to know how to prevent them. Here are some critical ones to pay attention to:
- Telephone Negotiations – To save on various resources, most professionals opt to do negotiations over the phone. However, it is important to remember never to conduct negotiations over the phone. Matters such as contracts and alike should be settled face-to-face, especially when there is a big amount of money involved.
- Talking too Much – One of the worst things a negotiator can do, especially during a very heated settlement, is when they start to talk continuously. Negotiations are not presentations. Rather, they are discussions on finding the middle ground. Let your counterpart talk and allow them to express their wants and opinions. Only then will you be able to negotiate successfully.
- Answering Questions – Allow your counterpart to ask questions. If you have done your homework, then there will be no problem. Once the question has been asked always remember to mentally prepare what you will say and take your time.
- Granting Concessions – As a negotiator, remember to never take the first offer. You will also have to learn how to be patient and never concede too fast. Do not give big concessions and always get counter concessions. Remember that negotiation is a process. It takes time and the effort of all the parties involved to come to an understanding suitable for all. If rushed, the negotiation might end poorly.