Tuesday, November 13, 2012

N12: Best Practices in Negotiation

N12: Best Practices in Negotiation d

Negotiation is an important part of everyday life and the opportunities to negotiate surround us. For the last chapter, we are discussing 10 ‘best practices’ for negotiators who wish to continue to improve their negotiation skills.

1. Be prepared. Negotiators need to plan and be prepared properly for their negotiations to get the ability to analyze the other party’s more effectively and efficiently as well as to understand the nuances of the concession-making process, and to achieve their negotiation goals. Negotiators have to understand their goal and interest before negotiating and be ready to understand the other party’s communication in order to find an agreement that meets the needs of both parties.

2. Diagnose the fundamental structure of the negotiation. Negotiators should make a conscious decision about whether they are facing a fundamentally distributive negotiation, an integrative negotiation, or a blend of the two, and choose their strategies and tactics that lead to successful negotiation outcomes.

3. Identify and work the BATNA. BATNA is the best alternative to a negotiated agreement. It is very important because it is an option that likely will be chosen should an agreement not be reached. Negotiators need to be vigilant about their BATNA.

4. Be willing to walk away. The goal of most negotiations is achieving a values outcome, not reaching an agreement per se. Strong negotiators remember this and are willing to walk away from a negotiation when no agreement is better than a poor agreement.

5. Master the key paradoxes of Negotiation. Excellent negotiators should understand that negotiation composes of a set of paradoxes -- seemingly contradictory elements that actually occur together. Negotiators need to handle these paradoxes by striving for balance in these situations.

6. Remember the intangibles. Negotiators need to remember that intangible factors influence their own behavior. Strong emotions and values are the root of many intangibles, so surfacing intangibles may result in the discussion of various fears and anxieties. Therefore, negotiators need to be aware of how both tangible and intangibles factors influence negotiation, and they weigh both factors when evaluating a negotiation outcome.

7. Actively Manage coalitions. Negotiators should recognize three types of coalitions and their potential effects. Strong negotiators assess the presence and strength of coalitions and work to capture the strength of the coalition for their benefit.

8. Savor and protect your reputation.  Negotiators should start negotiation with a positive reputation and should be vigilant in protecting their reputations. Moreover, negotiators should enhance their reputation by acting in a consistency and fair manner. Strong negotiators always seek feedback from others about the way they are perceived and use that information to strengthen their credibility and trustworthiness in the marketplace.

9. Remember that rationality and fairness are relative. Negotiators need to be aware that people tend to view the world in a self-serving manner and define the “rational” thing to do or a “fair” outcome or process in a way that benefit themselves. To manage these perceptions proactively, negotiators need to question their own perceptions of fairness, find external benchmarks and examples that suggest fair outcomes. Lastly, negotiators should illuminate definitions of fairness held by the other party and engage in a dialogue to reach consensus on which standards of fairness apply in a given situation.

10. Continue to learn from your experience. The best negotiators continue to learn from the experience. There are many different variables and factors, which make each negotiation different. These differences and learning enhance the ability to negotiate and make negotiators remain sharp. Negotiators should take a moment to analyze each negotiation after it has concludes to review what happened and what they learned. Negotiators should realize their own strengths and weaknesses and develop a plan to work on weaknesses and become better negotiators in the future. 


 1. What should Develop Ideas That Benefit Both Sides?

There are no matter what is standard, many companies are willing to negotiate packages that address their new employees' distinct needs. Still, even though everything is negotiable, your employer is more likely to agree to your ideas if they benefit the company as well. So anticipate this reality, and provide the advantages for your new bosses when you share your ideas.
For example, my client made sure to tell her new company, "I will be able to work longer hours and be more productive from the start if I can get a few important matters settled quickly."
Another client had an employer that, while willing to provide extra assistance for her relocation, did not want to set a precedent of deviating from its written policy.

2. What are the best management practices in workplace?

Create a good working environment. This is one of the most important practices a manager should be familiar with. This can be achieved thru constant communication. A good manager should be able to communicate with all his employees, and as well, he should encourage communication between the other members of the team he leads. That way everybody will feel much more at ease with each other, and in this way a more relaxed working environment can be achieved. This doesn’t mean that a manager shouldn’t put pressure on his or her employees, when he or she feels appropriate, but, the working environment, as a whole, should be a relaxed one.    

A manager should be friendly with the people he manages but never a friend, because that can get in the way of the work. A manager should know how to impose respect. But most of all a manager should know when to trust his gut instincts or when to just follow the rules. 

3. What negotiation best practices have you learned?

We have to pay attention to the transition from the negotiating table to execution the deal is not done when it’s signed. Use what you learned at the table to propel you and your team right to successful execution. A fast lap in a relay race is useless if you drop the baton instead of handing it off smoothly. If there needs to be hand-off to others who have to take what was negotiated and act on it, don’t leave it to chance. Make sure the hand-off happens, that both sides are involved, and that it covers not only the words but also the intent of the agreement.

Doing these things is hard. It runs counter to a lot of incentives that have been built into the jobs of some negotiators. It flies in the face of many things our culture teaches us about deal making. It requires some different skills, and it may cost you some deals that you might have closed if you had disregarded this advice. But if you have something worth negotiating, and if implementation matters, then doing deals any other way is just plain irresponsible and foolish.

Some negotiators measure success by the number of commitments they can extract from their counterparts. But commitments they can’t deliver on are hardly worth the paper they are written on. Relying on enforcing penalties in the contract later doesn’t get you a successful event when you need it.

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