Project The Right Image To Negotiate Successfully

When you negotiate, who are you? To be more exact, what image do you project? How do others in the negotiation perceive you? There are times when you have to change your character, your mindset, and your personality when negotiating, in order to create the environment that leads to the successful outcome of the negotiation. There will be times when you’ll have to be stern and there will be times when you’ll have to be soft, but always try to genuinely be nice.

There’s one political candidate that people have a varying range of opinions of. The political pundits say, the varying opinions stem from his lack of ability to connect with some people, based on the way he projects his image. Mind you, none of us will be able to connect with everyone, every time we negotiate, but there are ‘things’ you can do to enhance the probability of connecting with people when you negotiate. Use the following 7 suggestions when you negotiate …

  1. Be humble. No matter how much expertise you possess on a subject matter, don’t be a showoff. Being a know-it-all tends to turn people off.
  2. Always use active listening skills when talking with someone and allow them to perceive that you’re actively listening by acknowledging their thoughts through the paraphrases you use.
  3. When negotiating, genuinely set out to discover how you can help the other person achieve the goals they seek from the negotiation. (As an example, the other day, I spoke with another savvy negotiator from the Corning, NY area. I’ve only known this individual for a few short months, but his warmth, knowledge of negotiation skills, and his sincere desire to help other people always comes through when we speak. The wholesomeness of his character and demeanor endears him to me. As such, I’d go out of my way to assist him in his endeavors. When you negotiate, that’s the type of model I suggest you adopt. Be a person that people like so much they’d be willing to go the extra mile to help you achieve your goals.)
  4. Be likeable. Don’t be a sourpuss when you negotiate. (There are times when you’ll have to project such a demeanor, but only use that demeanor as a negotiation strategy when necessary.)
  5. 5. Be compassionate. If you have the upper hand in a negotiation, don’t hammer the other person to submit to more concessions, simply because you’re in the ‘power position’. You never know when that type of attitude will come back to bite you. Somewhere in the future you may negotiate with that same person and she may be in the ‘power position’. She most likely will recall the troubled times you gave her and she may return the favor. When possible, it’s nice to be nice.
  6. 6. Understand the value of reading body language accurately and use its covenants during the negotiation. Strive to become keen at reading body language to perceive a deeper meaning of thoughts conveyed throughout the negotiation. The additional insight gleaned from such will allow you to bond quicker with the other person, from which you can achieve a better appreciation of their perspective. I’m not suggesting you enhance your skills at reading body language to take advantage of the other person, I’m suggestion you do so to move towards the goals both of you seek from the negotiation.
  7. 7. When you negotiate, start out by putting the other person first. You may be thinking that’s crazy! When you’re flying, the flight attendant announces, if the oxygen mask is deployed put it on your own face first, then assist others. That may be true when you’re flying, but when you’re negotiating, to the degree you understand the other person, you’re in a better position to help him and by helping him, you help yourself.

If you’ve been reading these lessons over a period of time, based on the feedback I’ve received from those that have, your negotiation skills have increased substantially. As such, more than likely, you’re superior than the average person, when it comes to negotiating. Use your skills to teach others how to achieve more out of life by allowing them to see how magnanimous you can be when negotiating. By doing so, you will become an even stronger, savvier, more insightful negotiator … and everything will be right with the world.

The negotiation lessons are …

  • When you negotiate, don’t take advantage of people when you have the upper hand. You never know when their position may become stronger and at what point they may turn the tables on you to ‘get even’.
  • Always employ active listening skills when negotiating. Paraphrase questions, thoughts, and ideas to convey your understanding of the other person’s position and perspective.
  • As you negotiate, genuinely display an appreciation for the other person’s position. Make sure they know you’re not just viewing the negotiation from your perspective, but you also understand the perspective from which they view the negotiation. Use your body language skills to allow them to see, feel, and hear, your desire to seek the most favorable outcome for all parties involved in the negotiation.