The key attributes needed for effective negotiation skills
Are negotiation skills only important for the business world? Perhaps not – and everyone should master some negotiation skills to be successful in life. Don’t we need a good negotiation strategy or negotiation tactics, even for rudimentary chores like who should be doing the dishes?
The key attributes needed for effective negotiation skills include
· Effective communication
· Ability to appeal to the interests of the other party or person
· Selling your vision
Effective communication to sharpen your negotiation skills
Active listening, open ended questions, understanding the emotions of your client or the person with whom you are negotiating, being gracious and powerful planning are among the major components of effective communication.
Active listening can be enhanced by briefly repeating what the supplier/buyer has stated. From that point, you can move closer to the objections and understand the underlying reasons for those objections. If someone shows hesitation in giving you the order or a job, ask for their reasons. In the process, you may be repeating most of what has already been said, paving the way to a strong foundation for discussion.
Open ended questions are very helpful when you sit across the negotiating table, and particularly so if you are facing seasoned negotiators. Your advantage is that open ended questions help in eliciting natural answers rather than pre-designed ones.
Sample these open-ended questions:
· Why do you think the price is very high?
· What budget is most suited for you?
· Tell me more about why you think the past results do not justify the higher price
Open-ended questions such as the above help you take the discussion away from the price and take it to positive experiences in the past.
Understanding emotions is another key component of negotiation skills
Emotions play a significant role in a buying decision process. By igniting an overwhelming enthusiasm, you can build a stronger relationship with your client, an emotion which can spread. In other words, you should inject the feeling that they are also part of your team, or you are part of their team.
Successful negotiations result from powerful planning
With a powerful plan, your success with negotiations is significantly higher, and you can more comfortably drive towards your goals as well as the goals of your clients. Remember that, to define the precise needs of your client, you need to capture their mind.
Some of the questions you should ask yourself for powerful planning include:
· Which negotiating style should you expect from your client? (Small business, corporate, vendor etc.)?
· What are the collective interests and what are your own personal interests?
· What interests are uppermost for your negotiating partner?
· Can you trade in something very small for you, but significantly valuable to your client?
· What are your options to maintain the negotiation momentum and keeping it going forward?
· At what point would you walk away?
Doing it with grace
Being gracious is important not just in procurement negotiation, purchasing negotiation or sales negotiation, but in every walk of life. In the context of negotiation skills, grace takes center stage. Often times, this singular factor can leave an indelible imprint in the minds of your clients and become a huge investment for future gains.
When your negotiation skills are honed in effectively, you will be more confident and deal with authority, giving you a powerful edge to further your career goals.