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Communication Tip: Win-Win Negotiating

When you negotiate, look for a win-win solution where you and the other party feel satisfied with the results. You are more likely to get agreement from the other side if you see them as partners instead of adversaries. Here are some tips for achieving a win-win solution when you negotiate.

Know What You Want

Clearly understand the problem you are trying to resolve with the other party. If you are buying a new car, decide what model you want, what features you need, and how much you are willing to pay. Also prioritize the items that are most important to you and what you are willing to give in on. For example, you might be firm on the price, but you are willing to pass on some features to get it.

Know What the Other Party Wants

During the course of the negotiation, find out the other party’s needs and issues – including hidden issues. For example, a car salesperson might need to close the sale just to meet his quota. By looking for the other party’s needs, you will show that you are a receptive and serious negotiator, and you can craft your proposals to best fit yours and their mutual needs.

Open Yourself to Options

Be receptive to alternatives that meet both of your needs. Also consider that one alternative is to end the negotiations and walk away from the table if you find that you cannot work out a mutually agreeable solution.

Handling the Negotiation

Here are some tips to use in the course of the negotiations:

  • Establish friendly rapport with the other party before you begin negotiations.
  • Use “I” statements, as in “I would like you to consider…” You are the one with the problem that you want to resolve with the other person.
  • Be honest and direct.
  • Show appreciation to the other party.
  • Stick to the issue. Do not wander off on other subjects.
  • Give yourself and the other party enough time to work out an agreement. Don’t rush yourself or force the other party to rush.