What Successful Negotiators Know That Might Help You

Each and every day we are surrounded by opportunities to negotiate. Whether you realize it or not, you are negotiating all day every day at work, at home and elsewhere. Take a minute and reflect upon a typical day in your life. You probably have negotiated with a customer, a supplier, your boss, another department or another employee. Then you go home and negotiate with your spouse, your children and your pet. Let’s face it, you have even been negotiating through traffic on your way home! It never ends!

So, here are some questions to ask yourself. How well did you do at your last negotiation? Was it successful in terms of your desired outcome? Did you feel good after the “deal was done?” How can you become a more successful negotiator? What tips can be learned to achieve more satisfactory and longer lasting results so that you do not have to confront the same hurdles over and over again?

Well, to begin with you need to understand some of the fundamentals. The starting point is your own approach to negotiations. If you view negotiations as “win-lose” transactions, they may feel good to you in the short term if you are the “winner”, but over time reality will set in that the outcome was unbalanced, and not necessarily fair to the other party. You soon will come to the realization that the other party was not satisfied, and as a result, they will continue to negotiate with you to gain back what they think they have lost. If you do not believe it, just think about bedtime negotiations with your children. How often do they try to gain additional leeway? How about the last time there was a decision to be made about which movie to see? Still cannot relate? Think about the last time you tried to get your pet to do what you wanted. How many attempts did that take before your pet agreed or you just gave up?

The key to a successful negotiation is to ensure that each party recognizes they have had to make concessions and that they have gained some concessions from the other party. In other words, at the end of the day, both parties should feel as though they may have given up some things, but they also have gained some concessions in return. Only then will you have the foundation for a long-term successful relationship that benefits all involved parties.

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