A key part of my negotiation skills workshop, where I help corporate sales or buying teams negotiate better trading agreements, is to get the delegates to simply write three words in their workbooks. The three words are ‘Negotiation Is Silence’.
The reason I do this is because I frequently see them tackle the initial practical session (bear in mind this is before their ‘light bulb moment’) by overly speaking, overly justifying and, in essence, being too enthusiastic!
Now, don’t get me wrong, enthusiasm is usually a fabulous trait to have. I love being around enthusiasts as their unbounded energy and buzz is contagious, and that’s great to have in a training room. As training facilitator, I can really work well by building on their passion and engagement. But when it comes to negotiating that’s a different matter.
Negotiation is about calmness, being measured, only being demonstrative if it strengthens your case. It’s about being precise and concise with your language, saying less to gain more. It’s about making your next move or proposal with clarity of thought, having thoroughly evaluated the pro’s and con’s and the financial impact of the deal.
It’s about understanding that the more you say to justify your price or offer the more information you are giving to the other party to work with and to pick your proposal apart. To put it another way, the less you say the less you give away. Now this isn’t always easy in the cut and thrust of a stressful negotiation, but practicing speaking less and being comfortable with often awkward silences can really pay off when it comes to securing not just any deal but the best deal possible.
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PS: If I can help your team negotiate more profitable agreements please do get in touch on 01476 516282 or email at email@example.com
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