Five ways to become a better negotiator » SMEInsider

Five ways to become a better negotiator

From trying to secure the best price from manufacturers to paying low rent for office space, negotiation is an intrinsic part of the business world. Here are five tips to help you become a better negotiator!

1. Do your research

Knowledge is power. The more information you have at your fingertips, the more informed your decisions become. You need to know what the other party needs and wants. Think of it as any interactive game or sport – you have to anticipate the other person’s moves and positions before you make your own move.

2. Know what you want

This is just as, if not more, important than knowing what the other party wants. You shouldn’t enter into negotiations with a vague idea of what you need. Prioritise everything you want to get from these negotiations. You need to have a clear list of essential and non-essential things you need. You need to know exactly what will be a deal-breaker and what you can live without.

3. Don’t compromise

There is nothing worse than having a figure in your head before the negotiations start, then walking away with a smaller sum. If you are negotiating terms for a new job, be bold and ask for an amount that represents your value and skill, regardless of whether it is higher than what the employers have advertised. You never know they may accept! Whereas if you say a lower amount, they may accept and you will start worrying and thinking that maybe you could have gone higher!

4. Time is your friend

One of the most common mistakes people make in negotiations is rushing or being rushed. Business deals can involve small crucial details and therefore should not be rushed. If you feel you’re being rushed, slow things down. If you are unsure about some details, take a break and speak to an expert.

5. Silence is key

Silence is a great negotiating tool.  If you are unhappy about something, say so, but then sit back without saying another word. The other party may feel pressured to speak and may actually end up talking themselves into change their position.