Category Archive for: ‘Negotiations Leverage’

Further Thoughts on the “Master/Servant” Dynamic in Negotiation

In January I penned this post about the new plateaus of opportunity that open up for both buyers and sellers when we make the mindset shift to becoming a true strategic partner, rather than just a “run and fetch” vendor that recites features and delivers quotes. There is a fundamental problem (one that is not necessarily limited to contract negotiators): …

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Breaking the Master/Servant Sales Relationship

There is a world of difference between being a vendor that takes orders and being a valued peer or co-strategist. The former defaults to a defensive or reactive position, missing opportunities to help their client, increase the value of an account and build a more durable, mutually profitable relationship. Moving from the master/servant paradigm isn’t about gaining the upper hand …

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Communication Credibility: Without It, There’s No Persuasion or Negotiation Leverage

Show us a successful negotiator and we’ll show you someone who is highly conscious about how they communicate with others. It’s not about who can talk the fastest or prove that they know more than everybody else in the room—it’s about building credibility. This is crucial because credibility ultimately translates into leverage for getting the right deal done. There are …

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Negotiation Mistakes: Misguided Integrity

Negotiating with integrity is central to the Win Wisely™ approach; after all, if we are in search of positive leverage to artfully move the other side closer to our way of thinking, we must have integrity. Integrity gives us the foundation to make value arguments that are believable. When we are perceived as people who constantly play games with the …

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When Emotions Compromise Your Negotiation Leverage

Successful businesspeople like to think of themselves as rational beings that apply thorough analysis to get optimal outcomes. Of course, this is not always the case. We’re humans, not optimizing machines: We’re biased towards doing business with people we like and trust; we succumb to pride when a calmer perspective would have yielded a better outcome for everybody; we get …

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To Close the Deal, Know Your Client’s Risks and Articulate the Cost of Not Acting

In 2013, CSO Insights published an industry survey summarizing deals won and lost—in this instance, how often forecasts lined up with actual closed deals. Of the number of total forecasted deals, 26% were lost due to “no decision.” Many “no decisions” can be traced to a seller’s inability to address how their potential client sees risk and the failure to …

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Balancing Your Negotiation Team: If Everyone Agrees, Someone is Probably Wrong

Just as you don’t want to take to the field with a football team of 11 quarterbacks (or 11 goalkeepers, if you’re playing the more globally known form of football), you would not want a negotiation team that only represents one discipline or perspective. Although Peyton Manning or Cristiano Ronaldo each has enviable skills, other specialists will be needed to …

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Negotiation Lessons from Deadwood

Have you ever appeared at the negotiation table with a thoughtful list of offerings only to realize that your assumptions about those across the table were dead wrong? There’s a scene from HBO’s acclaimed Deadwood series (2004-2006) that illustrates just how uncomfortable it can be to misread or underestimate the other party. To set the scene: Alma Garret is a …

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Misusing Leverage: The High Cost of a Short-Term Negotiation “Win”

Do repeat business assumptions count in your business plan? If so, the way you conduct your negotiations takes on much greater importance. Some view negotiation as a series of devious games and ego contests conducted to gain advantage by keeping the other side continuously off balance, intimidated or flustered. We find this approach to negotiation quite short-sighted if your “win” …

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The Best Way to Manage Mistakes at the Business Negotiation Table

Imagine that you are in a sales negotiation. As part of your services, you will create a solution for an inventory problem that your customer is having. In the middle of the negotiation, a member of your team tells you that this solution can only be implemented manually, which will drive up the cost $250,000. What do you do? We …

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