Nogotiation Blog

Insights on Business and Sales Negotiation

Join us for insights on how to negotiate a winning balance, where where both sides understand and appreciate the value they receive. As a result, you are more likely to forge a long-lasting relationship that yields more and better opportunities in the future. This idea underpins K&R Negotiations’ Win Wisely™ approach and underlines the importance of using leverage wisely.

Break Four Bad Listening Habits to Become a More Skilled Negotiator

Completing a winning deal, while maintaining positive relationships, depends largely on your ability to gather as much information as possible about the other side, including their market position, motivations, and goals. This holds true at the personal, departmental, and organizational levels. Better and more complete information can lead to a finely tuned value argument and increased credibility, both of which mean greater leverage that will help you close and achieve positive relationships. Behind-the-scenes research with your team as you prepare to negotiate is a vital aspect of information gathering; the rest is gleaned from how you engage the other side in conversation. This may seem almost too basic to mention, but we are still surprised to see many seasoned professionals who don’t…

Negotiate Wisely: Stop the Revenue Leakage Due to Unprincipled Concessions

Over the decades as the K&R team have assisted leading companies achieve business and sales negotiation success, the subject of ”unprincipled concessions” has been a constant. Simply put, unprincipled concessions are those that are not tied to a credible business rationale. Research shows that this simple business negotiation mistake can (and has) cost companies between nine and eighteen percent of their dealmaking revenues. The below graphic illustrates why unprincipled negotiations are such an important issue. Let’s discuss the problem and what you and your team can do to make this a non-factor in your negotiations. The most common example of an unprincipled negotiation concession is this: To test you and your resolve, the client asks for a large up-front discount. Wanting…

K&R Negotiation Associates: Our Guiding Philosophy Revisited

Everything we do at K&R Negotiation is based on our philosophy, honed over several decades of helping the world’s leading companies achieve successful sales and business negotiation outcomes. We last shared this philosophy in late 2018 and it is time for a refresh. While some negotiations can be adversarial, negotiations as a defined business activity should be viewed as a positive process. The word negotiation itself often creates a lump in the throat if you are automatically inclined to picture tense standoffs, intimidation, manipulation, or a zero-sum game in which one side wins and the other side loses. Here is a better perspective: Negotiations are simply interactions between or among parties to bring about agreement. This in itself should be positive rather than adversarial. Negotiations…
Negotiating Contracts Uncertainty

Negotiating Contracts In A Volatile Economic Environment

For firms delivering services on long-term contracts, rising inflation has hit like a sledgehammer. The inability to raise rates due to resource rate or fixed price commitments threatens to jeopardize profitability as wages escalate by as much as 15%. Contracts signed before 2022 are in danger of becoming unprofitable, while competition for new business requires balancing price competition with intelligent contracting. If a vendor loses money on long-term contracts, this is also dangerous for the client. Failure to charge profitable rates can cause vendors to either lose money or cut the number or quality of resources, both of which jeopardize the quality of service—and potentially the customer’s own business. So, what can be done when the terms of a contract inhibit or prevent…
negotiations agenda management

Agenda Management Can Be Your Difference Maker (or Game Changer) in Negotiations

In one of my previous articles, I wrote about the “time factor” — not only how you can manage it against other considerations but also how to use the high-level (or macro) agenda to help create agreements that have a significant impact on your success. You can read that article and case study here. The perspectives espoused in that article are even more true today, despite events of the intervening six years. It seems that there are plenty of voices promoting the philosophy of controlling every part of the sales process, including the agenda. However, in my view, too much is made of “agenda control.” It may sound nice to control the agenda, but all sides in a negotiation have issues that need to be addressed, so control is not as important as managing the agenda. The overall…

Three Essential Negotiation Do’s and Don’ts

During our conversation on the Sales Reinvented podcast, host Paul Watts asked me what I considered to be the three most essential do’s and don’ts of sales negotiations. After 30+ years negotiating and writing books and articles about sales negotiation strategies, narrowing the list of negotiation opportunities and pitfalls down to three was a tough challenge. Following are the three that first came to mind as I spoke with Paul, and upon reflection, they hold up as crucial to negotiation success. They are important because they relate to credibility (for both you and the company you represent) and your ability to accomplish the mission (e.g. making the sale), while creating and preserving a relationship that will get stronger over time. Practicing these common-sense approaches will always…

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Creating Value-Based Leverage

In this short video, learn why negotiation is really the art of finding agreement.

Mladen Kresic introduces the concept of value-based negotiations leverage and why it is a powerful tool for moving conversations to an agreement.

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