3 rules of negotiation you need to know

3 rules of negotiation you need to know

Let your mind go back to the last sales negotiation you were involved in. When it finally came down to negotiating a deal, after all the PowerPoint slideshows, all the RFP responses, maybe even the product bake-off, who had the upper hand – you or the other side of the table?

Why power matters
The upper hand in any negotiation is held by the party with the most power. In sales negotiations, power is a slippery thing. It’s hard to tell how much of it you have, and equally hard to tell how much of it the other side of the table has. Despite all that, it’s a critical part of the process – “whoever has the most leverage in the negotiation is likely to be MORE satisfied with the outcome.”

All this means that you need to become better at assessing the situation: you need to know how to understand how much power you have and how much the other side has.

Power management: how to do it
Marketers have long known that negotiation is a process of information discovery. During this discovery process, you learn what your sources of strength are for this particular negotiation. That being said, there are three rules of negotiation that will help you learn more about your power during negotiations:

  • Rule #1 – Have More Power: The #1 rule of power management in sales negotiations is to realize that you ALWAYS have more power on your side than you think. Even if you think you have NO power at the beginning of the negotiation, then you are wrong – otherwise why would the other side negotiate with you?
  • Rule #2 – Power is not real: You must understand that power is not real. It only exists in your mind and therefore it is what you think it is. If you think you are powerful, then you are. If you don’t think you’re powerful, then you won’t be. Of course, this means that you should always imagine yourself as powerful, no matter what the circumstances. Easy for me to say, hard for you to do.
  • Rule #3 – Power Flows: The power level with which we begin a sales negotiation is not constant throughout the negotiation. The other side may make verbal mistakes and reveal too much, may make too many concessions, or do other things that will increase our power during negotiations. Similarly, if we are not careful, we can give away our power during negotiations.

What does this mean for you?

These three rules of negotiation power are your ticket to success. After all, every time we enter into a negotiation, we hope to come out of it feeling satisfied with what we managed to achieve – we didn’t give too much away and got what we needed.

To get that kind of satisfaction, we need to have enough power on our side to allow us to get our way to those things that count.

Realizing that negotiating power is a state of mind and that we have control over how much of it we have will allow us to use it to make better deals and close them faster.

#rules #negotiation

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