Avoiding The Stall: 3 Ways That A Sales Negotiator Can Keep Control

by drjim on March 16, 2012

Don't stop! Keep moving forward…!

Don’t stop! Keep moving forward…!

In every negotiation, you’ll eventually run out of things to say to the other side of the table. I mean, come on, you’ve already said everything. In fact you may have already said everything more than once! You need to be careful when this happens, either side may feel like giving up without having reached an agreement. Never fear, I’ve got 3 techniques that you can use when you encounter this situation that are guaranteed to turn things around:

Its All About The Agenda

I firmly believe that most negotiations are won or lost long before the discussions actually start. If you want to win your next negotiation, then you’re going to have to keep it on track. One of the best ways to ensure that this will happen is to make sure that you control what gets discussed – this means that you’re going to have to control what’s on the agenda.

Nobody ever really wants to go to the effort of creating an agenda for a negotiation; however, it’s one of the most important tasks that you can do in order to control how the negotiation turns out. If you control the agenda, then you control what will get discussed during the negotiations. Likewise, you control what won’t get discussed and this is one way to make sure that the negotiations stay on track!

Become A Quick Change Artist

Have you ever driven a car that tended to overheat? You know how it goes: you drive for a bit, it gets close to overheating, you pull over and let it cool down, then you keep on driving. It turns out that you can keep your next negotiation on track the same way.

By its very nature, negotiations can become heated exchanges. When you see the positions of both sides starting to harden, you need to take action. Call for a break and start to talk about personal issues with the other side: family, job, even the weather if you have to. By doing this you’ll allow things to cool down and then everyone will be ready to keep on negotiating.

Say It Again Sam

You would think that all that you’d have to do is to say something once, and that would be it, right? All too often in sales negotiations this turns out to not be the case. Instead, the other side has not prepared for the negotiations and they haven’t read anything that you’ve proposed.

What this means is that you really can’t go wrong repeating yourself. You don’t have to say the same thing over and over. Rather you can simply rephrase your main points and restate them that way. The more often that the other side hears what you are proposing, the more likely they are to start to understand what you want and to start searching for a way to make a deal happen.

What All Of This Means For You

Every sales negotiation has its own set of highs and lows. There will be times in which you are in synch with the other side of the table and you are able to rapidly make progress on a large number of issues.

However, there will also be times when the negotiations start to drag. When this happens it may seem as though there is no way to move forward. Experienced sales negotiators know that it’s always possible to make progress – you just need to know what to do to get things started again.

We’ve discussed three techniques that you can use: win-win, the path of least resistance, and saying “yes”. Every negotiating situation is different and you’ll need to make the decision as to which technique is going to work the best for you.

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

Question For You: When taking the path of least resistance, do you think that you should come back to the big issue multiple times to see if it has become any easier to resolve?

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What We’ll Be Talking About Next Time

In every negotiation, you’ll eventually run out of things to say to the other side of the table before you’ve been able to reach a deal no matter what negotiation styles or negotiating techniques you are using. I mean, come on, you’ve already said everything. In fact you may have already said everything more than once! You need to be careful when this happens, either side may feel like giving up without having reached a deal. Never fear, I’ve got 3 techniques that you can use when you encounter this situation that are guaranteed to turn things around and keep the negotiation process moving towards a deal:

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