We cannot negotiate with people who say what’s mine is mine and what’s yours is negotiable. John F. Kennedy
are you one of those looking for proven efficient models and strategies in negotiations? Negotiations with your son with your husband, a business partner, perhaps your neighbor? In my article which has been tested in real life by many people is really working. I wish to share with you not something that I have invented but just one of those powerful techniques that the Neurolinguistic Programming can offer to you. If you are not acquainted with the NLP, I would describe it in a one sentence as a toolbox that can help you to understand yourself better, notably how you use your mind and your language in the most efficient way. Hence, in my article , you’ll find the best negotiation technique you can possibly use.
Getting what you want
Are you being a solid negotiator in your family, professional or a friendship surrounding? Are you getting and leading people to get what you want or you tend to be in the other side position? Actually, although it may seem at the first glance, an effective negotiation is not that difficult and it can be learnt because when you really break it down, powerful negotiation skills come down to logic and tactfulness. Whether you are negotiating a deal with your teenager, boss, a neighbor, in principle the the basic rules remain the same.
People normally do not like having disagreements because it trigger them an unpleasant and uncomfortable feelings. As a matter of fact, you should know that behind every behavior lies a positive intention, even though you may disagree with this presupposition. Hence, you should bear in mind that first, everybody has positive intentions, but in the wrong setting it’s easy for a negotiation to escalate and go into undesirable direction. Secondly, you should distinguish a difference between getting what you want and winning an argument, because usually they’re often two very different things. Of course, it feels good in the moment to “be right” and prove the other person wrong. Nevertheless, getting what you want requires a decision to be made between a short term “I told you so” and long term success.
Separate the intention from the behavior
There are usually reasons behind a person’s uncooperative behavior. People may behave badly in any kind of communication and negotiations out of anger or fear, because they simply haven’t got any available resources in the moment, in other words, any more effective way to behave for many reasons, be it that they do not see any benefit, or they see asserting their own power as the only alternative to being dominated. Inflexible behaviors can therefore provoke an angry response, and so represent a challenge to the other side on the table facing the additional challenge of controlling their own reactions.
The key steps in negotiating model?
1. Control your emotions
The first step in bringing the other party -that I will call Mike to illustrate all the scenario I propose better, around to more effective communication or negotiating behavior is controlling your own emotions and behavior. When confronted with a challenging situation, people typically either strike back, give in, or break off the relationship. I can tell you from personal experience that these are counter-productive responses. Instead,when facing a tough person who tends to disagree to whatever, I warmly recommend you to try a technique we use in NLP and I call it “go to a stage” meaning you take a perspective from a stage to see,hear and feel what is going on down here. In other words, it means that you should refrain from reacting and instead, keep your mental equilibrium by distancing yourself emotionally and viewing the situation objectively. Secondly, try to identify your underlying interests and your Plan B to a given situation . Decide whether it is worth continuing communication or negotiating in the given situation. Thirdly, take a moment to recognize three things: the game tactics your interlocutor is using, recognize your own feelings and thirdly recognize a ‘hot’ issues. If you are negotiating, take a break, pause or review the discussion to date in order to gain time to “go to a stage.” In any case try avoiding making any decision right now and right here, notably when negotiating. Take a pause and move back even briefly, such as to gain some time in order to think clearer when it comes to making a decision or if you are about to sign an agreement, to review it properly.
2. Step into their shoes
The next move is about convince Mike and by stepping to his side. The goal is to reassure the opposite side and help them regain their own mental balance. Activate all your sensory acuity and listen actively to them. How? By asking clarifying questions and paraphrasing their statements. Acknowledge their points and feelings. Apologize if appropriate, or at least express sympathy for their problem. Focus on areas of agreement. Use the word “yes” to reduce tensions and foster an atmosphere of agreement. In expressing your own views adopt a both/and approach. Say “yes”. Say ”and”. Avoid “but…” In other words, use the so-called ”I-statements” rather than accusative ”You-statements”. The bottom line is that you present your views as an addition to, rather than a direct contradiction of, your interlocutor’s point of view.
3. Content re-framing
Further step is to re-frame the difference of opinion or a conflict in terms of interests rather than positions. The best way to get the opposite side to focus on interests is to ask open-ended questions as well as ‘problem solving’ oriented questions. Ask “why” questions to evoke your interlocutor’s interests. If he resists, you may proceed by asking him “why not” questions regarding some alternative solutions. Furthermore, “what if” questions are equally powerful because they provide some new options without directly challenging your interlocutor’s position. Alternatively, you may also use the so-called position-based negotiating tactics that can be handled by ignoring them, or by reformulating them. Reinterpret firm positions as aspirations. Reinterpret personal attacks as expressions of concern, or as attacks on the problem. If the other side continue to use counter-productive tactics, it may be than necessary to explicitly identify the problematic behavior, and have a talks or negotiation about the most appropriate plan of action.
4. Building a bridge
Step four, is building a bridge to draw Mike from his position to an agreement. Make it easy for him to say yes by removing common obstacles to agreement. He surely may resist ideas that are not their own, however, do not tell immediately what you have in mind as the solution is. It’s better to ask your interlocutor for his ideas and simply offer him choices. If Mike continues to resist it may indicate that she still has some interests that are obviously have not been met yet. Hence, try to understand Mike’s perspective and logic such as as you don’t overlook intangible interests (security, identity or needs for recognition). Mike’s values that are linked to his identity (what’s most important for him) can be of crucial importance to an extent that he’s ready to reject any kind of agreement rather than lose face.
Thus, finding a way for the other side to agree without appearing to compromise their principles or sacrifice their dignity, might be a right way. You may also consider to ask for a third-party recommendations because if an unacceptable proposal that you are proposing, why to exclude possibility that the same will be acceptable if it comes from a third-party (a recognized, competent and known to be for an example expert in something that may be relevant to conclude and agreement) . As a matter of fact, life experiences showed me that people may resist an agreement if it is too much change for them and especially if they are coming too fast. Therefore, it is extremely useful technique to break it progressively into number of smaller agreements or accords. Should your interlocutor Mike still resist, reassure him that no commitment is final until all are and do not rush the final agreement. Make sure you provide an opportunity to Mike too to “go to the stage” before making his decision.
5. Ask reality testing questions
Shouldn’t this tactic work, the last resort could be offering ways to make it hard for Mike to say no. The common reaction at this point is to resort to power tactics and try to force them to agree, and bringing Mike to his knees, which is counter-productive. Instead, the goal should be to educate Mike to realize that an agreement is in his best interest. Hence, ask him reality-testing questions about what will happen if no agreement is reached. Alert them but do not threaten what’s your Plan B. If Mike still resists agreement, you may really need to deploy your Plan B. The more power you use, the more you need to defuse third party resistance. Therefore, couple power tactics with conciliatory moves and seek to neutralize Mike’s attacks, rather than responding with counter-attacks. Seek allies if needed. There are pros and cons’ when it comes to third-parties ’cause they can inhibit threats or attacks, and can pressure both sides to resume negotiations. Remind whomever you wish to convince of your offer’s attractiveness. Reassure that your aim is mutual satisfaction.
Play Always Honestly and Smart
The bottom line is that the goal of reaching a settlement, an agreement or to convince someone in something should not be to destroy nor to dominate the other side, but to win them over, so that they become partners in a shared problem solving process.
The whole purpose of negotiating is to ‘win’ as much as possible with the minimum risk. If it is done properly a win-win approach can create a much larger ‘win’ for a much smaller risk. It also allows your interlocutor wins as well whereby reducing the possibility he turns into your defiant enemy. At the of the story, it really does not matter how much he ‘wins’ but rather matters is that you win what you need for a successful outcome .
Life is all about choices and and making decision on a daily basis. Those small and big one. Choosing a negotiating style is no different.
If there is negotiation, it must be rooted in mutual respect and concern for the rights of others. John F. Kennedy