Top 5 common negotiation mistakes and how to overcome them

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Negotiation is a term that makes many of us uncomfortable and uneasy, but, excites the rest of the folk. Why is this a coveted skill? Why do some of us fear it and the rest embrace it? Veteran negotiators refer to negotiation as an art. They claim that anybody can become a skilled negotiator with the right set of tools. You need to use these tools repeatedly in real-life situations in order to crack critical deals. Before we learn the solution to the problem, we need to understand the problem in detail. Below are the top 5 common negotiation mistakes we have identified along with simple solutions for each of them:

Mistake #1: Lack of preparation

“Failing to prepare, is preparing to fail”

This popular quote by Benjamin Franklin holds true in negotiations. You need to be completely prepared to not only answer questions, but also ask questions on the subject. If you’re not completely prepared and if you mention incorrect information, your client won’t take you seriously and your credibility will be highly affected.

In case your entire team is present for the negotiation, you can have a mock negotiation session and decide which team member will discuss which point. This way you can present a united front during the negotiation.

Mistake #2: Lack of confidence

The effect of a negotiation conversation ends up with most people either fumbling, losing their trail of thought, feeling insecure or obligated, or at a loss as to how to participate in the conversation, thereby either saying something wrong, or not saying anything at all and maintaining silence.

Most of us relate to these emotions and actions during a negotiation. The root cause of all these emotions is the lack of confidence in such situations. We either tend to overlook a vital piece of information or we are overwhelmed by the magnitude of the deal. Due to these factors, our confidence levels tend to dip drastically during a negotiation.

In order to avoid such situations, you need to predict the favorable outcomes for both parties beforehand, identify your opponent’s weak points, and anticipate the sensitive subjects. When one is prepared with facts, figures and numbers, the confidence level boosts tremendously, as the ground work is already done and you feel prepared for the conversation. One can also gauge the kind of questions and terms the client may set during the negotiation. Having the counter responses for these before hand puts you at ease before the meeting, as you already know what you are going to discuss.


3) Brief listening skills

Veteran negotiators agree that the easiest way to lose a deal is by not listening to the other person and talking endlessly about your requirements. By speaking continuously without listening to your opponent, you are being aggressive and this quality can put off even the most voluntary client.

Consider negotiation as a conversation between your opponent and your team. Listen intently to the points made by your opponent and then put forward what you have to offer. This way, you can understand your opponent’s point of view and negotiate accordingly.

4) Revealing vulnerability

In a negotiation, it is imperative to stay calm and keep emotions in check. It is synonymous to a poker game. You shouldn’t reveal all your cards in the beginning itself. When you show a sign of weakness – impatience, overconfidence, irritation or even angst, your opponent can use it to their advantage. This can also affect your thought process of reaching an amicable decision.

In order to prevent ending up in such a situation, you need to take a few deep breaths, reflect on your points and then continue the negotiation. You can also request a short break to freshen up and take this time to think about your next step.

5) Hesitation to walk away

The primary concern most of us have while entering a negotiation is that we have to strike a deal, come what may. This mindset can stop us from tapping into our potential and obtaining the best deal for the organization. The desperation to close the deal can at times lead us to unfavorable situations.

You should never succumb to the opponent’s pressure and conclude the deal based on their terms entirely. Instead of settling for their offer, politely state a number that works for you and inform them that it will be difficult for you to go below that. You can also adjust and alter your deliverables according to the price the client is willing to pay during the negotiation. Sometimes, instead of reducing the fee, one can include more deliverables as part of negotiation. This ensures that the client receives more than what he asked for, and you still get the money you asked for.

If you are looking to master negotiation skills professionally, WeSchool Bangalore is one such business school that offers the Negotiation Program to working professionals, leaders, entrepreneurs and business owners. The 2-day program is conducted by veteran negotiator Mr. Abhay Dixit, who is an expert at the art of Negotiation. To know more about the the course details, click here.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

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