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.

A Negotiator's Resolutions for the New Year

With the pressure of year-end closing behind us, it is time to look forward.  This is no time to rest on our laurels - unless we want to go through another insane end of year, hoping that the customer will have pity on us and sign, even if they are not convinced.  To that end, as good negotiators, repeat after me... I resolve to do my preparation early in 2009, and as a result, have a terrific year. To that end, I resolve: To persuade my buyers by describing the value of my solution - in their business terms, not mine, using references and proofs of concept as needed. To articulate that value to each decision maker or key influencer for the agreement. The articulation will be customized and relevant to the role of the customer person I am speaking with, and I will get confirmation…

Will it close this year?

As we approach the final days of 2008, you are probably working on a number of transactions with the hope of exceeding your sales quota or target.  If you are counting on a year-end close, we are offering two questions and a tip for your consideration.  These can shape your actions over the next couple of weeks, and affect your revenue and profit. The questions: 1.    What happens to the buyer if they don't sign before year-end? If your answer is that they won't get this good a deal in January, you are dealing in pretty weak leverage.  The persuasion that is missing from this argument is business value. Buyers know that an offer made once can often be made (or closely approached) again. If they don't have a business reason to act now - a reward that accrues or a risk that they take…

Thoughts about selling in the current economy

Here are a few ideas and thoughts from some of the collective experience of our associates, in addition to some suggestions from articles we have read over the past few months about selling and negotiating in the current difficult economic environment. In many of the articles, there are three common themes: It is important to maintain a positive attitude - focus on where you can have impact - not on the overall economy. Remember the old expression: Attitude will determine your altitude. Execute the basics - diligently. Vince Lombardy turned the Green Bay Packers into a successful American football club with his relentless focus on the basic skills of the game. Work harder (depending on the article - it will take anywhere from 25% to DOUBLE the effort to accomplish the same results.)…

SOAP

In our recent rounds of negotiation consulting for our Clients' year-end transactions, we saw one practice from a US-based sales executive that we admire greatly (both the practice and the executive).  You can use it, and if you are as successful as she is, you'll be happy. It's called the "Summary On A Page" (SOAP). Maybe she got it from her children's 6th grade English class, but a good idea is a good idea regardless of the source. For some reason, when we described this in Spain, our client there called it a SOAP. Maybe everyone knows this practice (although no one we discussed it with seemed to), or maybe this is an interesting case of cross-language acronym usage.  So SOAP it is. If you recall our recent article "Procurement Gets a Ferrari", you know that many buyers come in with…

What The Nova Scotia Business Journal knows that you don't

There was a recent article in the Nova Scotia Business Journal that contained a fundamental principle for successful negotiators.  In the article titled "Five Fatal Business Mistakes", the author included the following: "The psychology of the customer is vital to marketing and sales success.  ...The prescription has three parts: do the research, listen very carefully and, most importantly, act decisively for the long term." How simple is that?  Yet in consulting session after consulting session, we see failures to perform on these basic tasks. Let's take a look at how these simple precepts work, and where the failure to perform occurs. Do the research. Many sellers provide references and high-level benefit statements, such as these: "99 satisfied clients can't be wrong." "Our…

Procurement gets a Ferrari

K&R does a lot of work near year-end.  In addition to delivering Negotiation Skills Workshops, we directly consult on sales that are projected (or sometimes just hoped) to close before December 31st. Having had many of these discussions lately, one thing struck me as a pervasive problem.  Many sellers who consulted with us said something like this: “Procurement told me that they need to reduce costs with us to 10% below last year’s spend.  I have a plan to do it, and with that plan I think I can close this deal by year end.”  To me, this is Procurement asking for a Ferrari (or for any other very hard to obtain item).  Let’s talk about why. Let’s recall the K&R Negotiation Success RangeTM.  The NSRTM is a tool for analyzing the range in which both parties can succeed…

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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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