If only we had the negotiation styles and negotiating techniques to put words in the mouth of the other side of the table during a negotiation! We can’t actually do this, so we spend a great deal of time looking for clever ways to get them to say the things that we want them to say. More often than not, the one thing that we’d really like to hear coming from the other side of the table is the word “yes”. No, we can’t make them say this, but it turns out that we can do things that makes it much easier for them to say it.
Providing A Foundation For Saying “Yes”
Let us all agree on one very important fact: having the other side of the table say “yes” to one of our proposals does not just happen. Instead, there is a process that the other side has to go through in order to get to saying yes. What this means for us as negotiators is that if we want them say yes to something that we have proposed, then we are going to have to help them move along and get to a point where they can feel comfortable saying “yes”.
One of the first things that we need to do when we are trying to get the other side to say “yes” is to maneuver them to a position where they want to say “yes”. One way to make this happen is to make saying “yes” appear to be valuable for them. They’ll feel this way if they have invested a great deal of time and effort into the negotiations. Walking away or not getting a deal would be costly for them now. If the negotiations have gone on for long enough, then it’s going to be easier to get a “yes” out of them.
If we’re trying to get the other side to say “yes” to our proposal, then at the same time what we are really trying to make happen is to get them to say “no” to other alternatives. In order for this to happen, we’re going to have to set things up so that they can have a basis for making a comparison between the alternatives that are being presented to them. If we position this correctly, then we’ve just made it easier for the other side to say “yes”.
Signaling That It Is Time To Say “Yes”
The only way that you are going to be able to get the other side to finally come around and say “yes” to your proposal will be to make them feel as though they were involved in getting there. It’s going to be up to you to work with them and make them feel as though when they reach the point where they need to make a decision, that they feel as though they made it their by themselves and that they were not pushed.
When you want the other side to hurry up and say “yes”, it is going to be incumbent on you to signal to them that now is the time to speak the magic word. One way that you can communicate this to them is to slow your rate of making concessions. This will serve as a signal to the other side that you are fast approaching your bottom line and it is now time for them to make a decision.
Finally, one of the most difficult things for you to do, but one of the most important, is to make the other side feel as though they were involved in producing the proposal that you are now asking them to say “yes” to. By doing this you’ll make it easier for them to agree to it because they won’t be saying yes to your proposal, instead they’ll be agreeing to the proposal that both of you created.
What All Of This Means For You
The ultimate goal of any principled negotiation is to be able to walk away with the deal that you want. In order to get that deal, you need the other side to say “yes” to your proposals. Getting them to say this can be quite a challenge. However, it turns out that there are several things that you can do that will make it easier for them to say what you want them to say.
In order to convince the other side to say “yes”, you need to get them to invest both time and effort into the negotiation so that they feel obligated to reach a successful conclusion and not end up having wasted their time. When they are saying “yes”, they are really saying “no” to alternatives. This means that we need to show them the alternatives that they will be saying “no” to. To let the other side know that now is the time to say “yes”, you need to slow down how many concessions you are willing to make. If you can get the other side to feel as though they have been involved in creating your proposal, then they will be more likely to say “yes”.
<>We want the other side to say “yes” to our proposals during a negotiation. In order to make this happen, we need to work with the other side and allow them to become comfortable with saying what we want to hear them say. If we take the time and make it easy for them, then they’ll feel comfortable telling us what we want to hear!
– Dr. Jim Anderson
Blue Elephant Consulting –
Your Source For Real World Negotiating Skills™
Question For You: Do you think that you can ask the other side to say “yes” directly?
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What We’ll Be Talking About Next Time
Whenever we start a negotiation, we go into the negotiation with high hopes. We would like to be able to walk away from the discussions after all of the negotiation styles and negotiating techniques are over with the deal that we are looking for. However, that does not always happen. What is it that makes a negotiation go our way – or not? It turns out that one critical part of any negotiation that plays a big role in determining its outcome is our state of mind.