We’ve all been conditioned to think that compromise is the best that can come out of any given conflict.
Unfortunately, this means that each party has to make a concession and thus walk away with only a little bit of what they actually wanted, or risk losing it all.
But there could be a better way to handle the situation.
What if you could both win? Not lose some and win some, but actually get the most that you can out of a given situation, and extend the same benefits to the other side as well?
Not only will you both be more satisfied with the results of the discussion, it will also foster the development of a long term relationship based on value addition as both parties would feel like their interests are being respected and met as well as possible.
Know what you want.
Before you go into any discussion, decide exactly what you want to achieve out of it. Figure out the best case scenario, what you’re willing to give up, and the additional benefits that you could get as trade offs.
For instance if you’re a service provider and the client can not meet your desired price, you could arrange to have them pay in installments or take less product for the amount of money they are comfortable with.
Having alternative ways in which your needs could be met opens up more opportunity for you to achieve your goals without giving up too much or damaging your relationship with the other party.
Know what they want.
The surest way to have whoever you’re negotiating with give you what you want is for them to feel that their needs are equally important to you.
You could do your background research on them before you enter the discussion, but the most important thing is to listen to them and understand what they want and what drives them.
When you know who you’re dealing with and what their motivations are, you’ll be in a great position to create a win-win proposition for you both.
Know when to walk away.
No matter how great you are at negotiating, there will always be some situations that are just not worth the time and effort.
You need to know your limits and the point below which you’re not willing to go, so that you protect yourself from settling for a deal you’ll later regret.
Always keep in mind that there are more opportunities out there for you. A good strategy is to figure out other desirable alternatives to a given negotiation before you go in. This will help you stay level-headed and prevent getting too emotionally attached to a given outcome that you compromise your own position.
Ultimately, the most successful negotiations are the ones where both sides champion their own needs while simultaneously seeking to fulfill their obligations to the other party to the best of their abilities.