Good Negotiating Is All About Connecting With The Other Side

by drjim on December 13, 2013

In order to complete a deal, you first need to make a good connection

In order to complete a deal, you first need to make a good connection
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The goal of any negotiation is for you to find a way to reach a deal with the other side of the table. Once we get beyond all of the negotiation styles and negotiating techniques that are involved in negotiating, it really comes down to finding the answer to one primary question: what is it going to take in order connect with them in a way that will lead you to reaching a deal that both of you can live with?

Communication Styles Are Key

If you were building a motor for a car, a big part of the job would be to get the various spinning parts to work together in order to move the car forward. You’d have to match up the fast moving parts with other fast moving parts and likewise slower moving parts would have to be matched with other slower moving parts. Make a mistake here and the engine will tear itself apart.

The same thing can be said when you are trying to build a successful negotiation. You are going to have to match your communication style with the style of the other side of the table. If they are outgoing, then you’ll have to be outgoing. If they are “all business”, then you’ll need to be all business during the negotiations also.

A very important point for you to keep in mind is that there is not just one approach or style that you use for all of your negotiations. Instead, you need to be willing to adapt to the style that the other side of the table is using. Mold yourself to the current negotiation and you’ll be better suited creating a connection with the other side.

It’s All About Understanding

There is no way that you’re going to be able to reach a deal with the other side of the table if you don’t understand what is motivating them to be sitting at the bargaining table with you. What this means for you is that you’ve got some homework to do: you’ve got to find out what the other side’s needs are.

You are going to have two tasks that you’ll need to quickly complete when a negotiation starts. The first of these needs is to determine what the other side of the table wants to get out of the negotiations. The next task is for you to take the time and think about how you are going to want to deal with each of those needs.

If the person on the other side of the table has a deep set need to always “win” a negotiation, then in order to connect with them you are going to have to manage the negotiation so that they feel as though they are winning. This means that you’ll have to let them win on the issues that you don’t really care about while you win on the issues that are a big deal for you.

What Does All Of This Mean For You?

The reason that we’re willing to invest the time and effort into a negotiation is because we want the outcome: the deal. However, we need to understand that we will be negotiating with real live people and so this means that during any principled negotiation we are going to have to adapt our negotiating techniques so that we can connect with them.

In order to make this happen we first need to match our communication style with theirs. This will allow us to connect with them. Next we need to take the time to understand where they are coming from and what their needs are.

This level of connection is what is going to allow us to reach a deal with the other side. They are going to feel a sense of satisfaction that comes from negotiating with someone who really seems to know them. By taking the time to connect, we’re going to be able to create deals that both sides will be able to live with.

– Dr. Jim Anderson
Blue Elephant Consulting –
Your Source For Real World Negotiating Skills™

Question For You: What is the best way to determine the communication style of someone that you’ve just met for the first time?

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What We’ll Be Talking About Next Time

“Satisfaction” is a great word – doesn’t it sound like something that we’d all like to achieve every time we start a negotiation? As great as this concept is, despite all of the negotiation styles and negotiating techniques that we’ve learned, just exactly how to achieve it is something that seems to elude negotiators because we just don’t know how to get there. The good news is that there are three simple things that you can do in order to boost your chances of emerging from your next negotiation with both parties having a sense of satisfaction.

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