Steps to acquiring the mindset of a negotiator

Steps to acquiring the mindset of a negotiator

In the current economic climate, competition for new business can be tough. Being an effective communicator can be the difference between winning a piece of work and losing it to a competitor. To help give you an edge, The Influence Business has identified 3 key steps to acquiring the mindset of a negotiator.

The point is not to win over the other party but to win the other party over.

1.       It’s all about perception…..

Negotiating is all about perception.  Since all of our own behaviours make sense to us, the trick is to be able to see the situation as the other party might view it.  This is the most important skill a negotiator can possess.  People tend to see what they want to see, so ultimately, conflict and potential difficulties lie not in objective reality but in people’s heads.  It is also important to remember that understanding the other party’s point of view is not the same as agreeing with it.

2.       Taking the emotion out of the equation helps you gain perspective……

If you can extract your emotions from proceedings, you will gain perspective and be able to identify patterns, relationships and how aspects of the negotiations interconnect.  When you become emotionally fired up, you produce more adrenaline and this can impair judgement.  So, when you are subjected to tensions, irrational discourses and emotional diatribes, strive for a balance of caring, but not too much.   The first thing you must do is recognise both yours and their emotions and then understand them.  Make them explicit and acknowledge them as legitimate.  It is much more persuasive to describe an issue in terms of its impact on you, rather than what they actually did e.g. “I feel let down”instead of “you broke your word”.  A statement about how you feel is difficult to challenge. People are often more influenced by the manner of the message than the message itself.

3.       Good and clear communication is fundamental to success in negotiation……

If each plays to the gallery, effective communication between the parties is all but impossible. So, before making a significant statement, know what you want to communicate or find out, and know what purpose this information will serve. It is also essential to build a working relationship, as the quicker you can turn a stranger into someone you know, the easier a negotiation is likely to become.