In today’s business climate, being able to negotiate successfully a huge skill and can often be the difference between success and failure. No matter the size of your business, having a negotiation strategy in place, as well as being able to confidently negotiate, is a must. No matter if you’re negotiating a large business deal, or simply just finalising some minor details, knowing how to negotiate a win is critical when it comes to the success of your business.
Being an effective and skilled negotiator doesn’t need to be particularly difficult, but you do need to have some key qualities, such as being prepared, observant and professional. With this in mind, here are 3 key negotiations tips for you as a business owner and that will help you to secure more wins in the future.
Negotiators who are more successful than not are often highly assertive and confident, with the ability to challenge everything, safe in the knowledge that everything is negotiable. Being assertive can mean asking for what you want and refusing to take no for an answer, however, this isn’t the be-all and end-all. Whilst it is a great negotiation skill to own, asking for what you want can come with backlash, depending on what you want and who you are asking.
It’s important to remember that when you are asking for what it is that you want, you don’t come across as rude and arrogant and that you can be assertive without letting your emotions get in the way. No one wants to deal with an arrogant or rude business owner and you never know if you’re going to need to come into contact with this person again in the future.
You need to really work on this if this is a skill you would like to use to your advantage and let people know what you want in a non-confrontational or threatening way, whilst also being a successful negotiator. This sounds fairly easy but is actually something a lot of business owners struggle with when it comes to this negotiation skill.
When it comes to negotiating, it is really important to have all the right paperwork and information to hand and having the first draft of the first version of your negotiations. This is particularly important if you are looking to negotiate on anything that is already currently in place which is set to renew, such as a lease review or rent review. Having a draft lets you frame how you want the deal or negotiations to be structured, highlight your key points that are yet to be discussed and build up momentum in your favour.
Once you have drafted up the first version of your negotiations, the other party will be less likely to make many extensive changes to the draft, unless of course it is unfairly one-sided, and you get to start negotiations with your preferred terms as the starting point. One thing to remember when it comes to drafting your negotiations is that you don’t want to start things off with terms or agreements which the other party will never agree to, as this will only cause things to get off on the wrong foot and negotiations could potentially become hostile.
Negotiations don’t tend to go well if they are all one-sided. If you, or the other party, go into negotiations and want to outright control the situation and conversation, then it will only end one way: badly. The best negotiations in business tend to be when each side listens to the other, understand the key issues and formulate appropriate responses. Remember, each side in a negotiation wants to gain something and you can only create a win-win situation if you understand the other party’s motivations and reasons.
During negotiations, spend time asking them questions and listening to their responses so that you can get an insight into their perspectives and find a solution to their problems. This way, they’ll be more likely to agree to your terms or give you more leeway in terms of compromise. Successful negotiations tend to be the ones where the situation is looked at from both sides. Everyone views the world differently, especially in business, so instead of outright trying to win the negotiations, try to understand the other party and find a way to end the negotiations with them feeling satisfied and walking away with a win, too.