Collaborative negotiating is the primary focus of most decision making in the 21st century. As the world continues to change at an unprecedented pace, negotiating has become the preferred approach to productive decision-making and the key to conflict avoidance. The need for negotiated solutions has increased in business due to:
- A greater focus on the global marketplace
- A continued trend in longer-term relationships and partnerships
- An information explosion, the Internet, artificial intelligence and data mining tools
- Reliance on fewer suppliers and customers
- Inevitable business cycles
What about personally? Do you have a need to negotiate? Undoubtedly the answer is "Yes." Negotiating helps you get what you want. Especially when the strength of the parties or position is unbalanced and the other side has more power, money, information or other leverage, your superior skills as a negotiator can tip the scale in your favor.
Collaboration is inherently inclusive of people and ideas, thus generating buy-in to satisfying solutions. You may get agreement without all the collaboration, but this higher level of involvement by both sides is proven to result in a higher level of compliance.
Negotiating with mutual satisfaction in mind every time builds trust in relationships. People always extend the most consideration to people they like and trust. By building relationships and trust, you will open new doors for creative agreements and more mutually satisfying outcomes.
Why is it necessary to take the time to learn about each step in a negotiation process and internalize the core skills in order to do it well? Because negotiation happens in almost every aspect of your life. Everyone needs to know how to negotiate to get what you want, but don't negotiate everything. You will wear yourself and your resources out!
But what if something is not negotiable? Always assume it's negotiable until proven otherwise. What was not negotiable yesterday maybe today. And if it is not negotiable today, don't assume it is not negotiable tomorrow. Beware of your assumptions. Do not make assumptions truths – until you test them. Some things, by themselves, may not be negotiable. A good negotiator, after patiently probing, listening, and offering solutions, however, can find the one creative solution that incorporates the other parties' interests and thereby makes it negotiable.
If you're still not a believer, take a chance. Why not negotiate? You will be surprised by the results!