Forbes Coaches Council
Setting up a business deal requires time, patience and some steady nerves. Perhaps you're talking with a client about establishing — or expanding — your services at their firm. Perhaps you're sitting down with fellow partners, trying to chart a course for the business. Everyone has ideas. Everyone has wants. You just need to negotiate.
Besides the usual research and planning that goes into a deal, there are other ways to prepare yourself before you sit down at the table. Below, members of Forbes Coaches Council talk about those key skills, qualities and tactics, as well as how they can help you. Here's what they advise:
All images courtesy of Forbes Councils members.
Members of Forbes Coaches Council share the top tactics of every skilled negotiator.
1.Face, And Clear Away, Any Personal Baggage
The late Jim Camp, author of Start with No, taught me that one of the steps in negotiation that's often missed is to face and clear any personal baggage that we have when we come to the table. We often have hidden agendas that need to come out into the open before we can make progress. - Sandi Leyva, Sandra L Leyva Inc.
2. Identify Your End Goal
Get clear on what you want to accomplish throughout the negotiation process and your desired outcome. Do you want a win-win outcome? A collaborative process? What about your end goal? Is it negotiable? How so? The more clear you are in the beginning, the easier it is to negotiate not only for what you want, but also you'll be able to list out the facts to support it. - Gina Gomez, Gina Gomez, Business & Life Coach
3. Build Trust
Trust is a critical foundation of any successful relationship. Negotiations start well before you even meet at the table for the discussion. Build credibility, act honestly and show genuine interest with others. This will create more opportunities for the desired result for both parties. - Alan Trivedi, Trivedi Coaching & Consulting Group
4. Develop Your Perception And Persuasion Skills
Effective negotiation involves a blend of communication and persuasion skills. You can't negotiate if you don't know how to persuade. Persuading involves being able to influence others to achieve your goal. You need high levels of perception and good influencing skills to negotiate successfully. - Dr. Corinthia Price, WorkforceCareerReadiness™
5. Listen Carefully, Then Restate The Points
The more effectively you can listen with optimism, the greater your opportunity for success in a negotiation. Hear your counterpart without interruption. Be aware of emotions, body language, and tone of voice to get the full picture. Then restate their key points to their satisfaction before making your own. It's not a competition against them: It's an opportunity for you to both get what you want. - Hayward Suggs, Commonquest Consulting
6. Find The Core Value That You Can Align Towards
In negotiations, you want everyone at the table to leave feeling like they got what they wanted. You don't have to agree on everything — in fact, many solid partnerships and relationships thrive on an appreciation of each others' differences. Find the core value that you can align towards, and work out the details once you find the outcome that serves everyone best. - Karen Pery, Karen Pery Coaching + Consulting
7. Learn What Matters Most
Learn about what matters most to the other person. Be curious to find a way where you can both win. In Negotiating with Giants, Peter D. Johnston shares an example: Two people are fighting over an orange. Before cutting it in half, we learn one wants the rind for baking and the other wants only the juice. There is often a way for each person to get most of what they really want. - Susanne Biro, Susanne Biro & Associates Coaching Inc.
8. Weigh All Options, And Be Flexible In Your Communication Tactics
Yes, you want to "win," but what if what your counterpart is suggesting can make your win larger? Don't go into negotiation conversations ready to prove a point or to shut the other party down. Weigh all options, and be flexible in your communication tactics. - Maleeka T. Hollaway, The Official Maleeka Group, LLC.
9. Know Your Non-Negotiables To Negotiate Well
When you are clear on what your non-negotiables are, you can engage in productive negotiation. If you have not clearly determined your own non-negotiables, the process won't feel strong, and you won't feel confident. By knowing exactly what your non-negotiables are, and sticking to them, you and the other party are more likely to successfully get what you both want. - Kiran Gaind, The Connected Family
10. Get Comfortable With Silence
Silence can be the result of listening, thinking or waiting out the other party. Too many people lose in negotiations because they are uncomfortable with a pause and move forward too fast. Use the "power of the pause" to make a point or to consider the scope of discussion. It actually is a sign of strength versus weakness when you can control your natural impulse to talk. - LaKisha Greenwade, Lucki Fit LLC
11. Know Your Walk-Away Point
Sometimes, the other side in a negotiation may have unrealistic expectations that are set in concrete. In any negotiation, you need to have options to be flexible for reaching agreement. But, knowing your limits is a critical skill — to recognize when it is time to "pull the plug" and walk away. Examine your options carefully, but recognize when no deal is a better result than a bad deal. - Susan P. Joyce, Job-Hunt.org