To sprint 100 meters, you need to aim for 110 meters. To get success in negotiation you need to first achieve perfect communication skills, intuitive thinking, assertive and confident personality. Ask yourself these questions to reach your target.
- What do you want?
You need to ask what you want. Your tone should be assertive and not aggressive. Assert your requirements or perspective in a strong, determined manner not in an aggressive manner.
- Are you listening?
A good negotiator has a keen ear always ready to hear and absorb. Negotiating follows the rule of 70:30 in communications. This means you should listen 70% of the time and speak 30% of the time. The more you know about the perspective of the other parties involved, stronger your position.
- Have you done your homework?
Before reaching the negotiating table, collect as much information possible about all the parties involved. Collect information on their personality types, their ideological leanings, their perspectives, their agenda. More the information you have, easier will be the negotiation.
- Are you flexible?
Never enter into a negotiation room, being adamant. Be open to hear the other’s perspective. Be agile in your thinking and open to solutions other than what you thought is ideal.
- Is time with you?
The winner in the game of negotiation is the one who has entered with ample time in their hands. The moment a party comes to know that you have time restraints, you will be bound to agree to the terms and conditions of others. Time is the greatest advantage that you can have.
- Are you an optimist?
Conviction in oneself is the first step to be taken, while moving towards the negotiating table. If you are not convinced in your own perspective, it will be difficult to convince others. More the optimism on the results, more the chances on a favourable result.
- What’s their story?
Awareness of the perspectives of the other parties involved. You should have ample knowledge on why have they come here to negotiate? What is at stake for them? How far are they ready to let go? Know their story inside out, own it the way you own your story.
- What do they need?
Everybody comes to the negotiating table for something that they need or desire. Your awareness of their needs makes your position on the negotiating table stronger.
- What is there for you?
Be aware of what is there for you. Your awareness on how much you can gain, or what is at stake or what can you lose, will put you in a more secure place on the negotiating table.
- Is it personal?
Negotiation can never be personal. Always keep yourself and your opinion of the other parties involved away from the table. It is never about your opinion of the other person; it is always about what he has to offer to you.
Once you have got the answers to these crucial ten questions, you are ready to go ahead and ace the negotiation in front of you.