Prepare, Prepare, Prepare
Preparation is an investment of time. Miss out on preparation and you prepare to miss out. Who is on each side? What’s the history? What’s the balance of bargaining power? What can each side afford to give away? What’s your Plan B?
Bring a Positive Attitude
Be a “Fuser” – be prepared to fuse the agendas of both sides in order to create currency for both sides. All long lasting, successful deals are based on this state of mind.
Marshal your Bargaining Power
It’s easy to under-estimate your own bargaining power and over-estimate your opponent’s. Identify the Aces that you hold to boost your confidence. Do you have Expertise on your side? Authority? Network power? Rules and Regulations? These are all sources of bargaining power.
Ask for what you Want
The more you ask for the more you get, so don’t negotiate with yourself before you open the bidding. And you only need one good reason to support what you ask for – don’t waffle – the more you say the more you give away.
Be prepared to try Different Behaviours to break a Deadlock
Different behaviours suit different people, so don’t just rely on your ‘old favourites’ all the time. Adapt to the patterns other people use in order to be more persuasive – e.g. there is no point using “big-picture” thinking to influence someone who is more comfortable with detail.
Work out what Everybody Needs
This is not always easy, as people tend to hide behind surface wants like “price” or “quantity” rather than revealing their real emotional drivers. But it’s those underlying needs that must be addressed to craft a “fused” solution that suits both sides. So, you are a detective looking for cues and clues about what is really going on.
Know when the Deal is Done and Close it Quickly
Closure is a fluid moment. If you keep going beyond that point you risk blowing the whole deal. Tempting as it is, don’t just keep haggling. The other side may change their mind because they lose interest, have a change of personnel, have a restructure or change their strategy.
When you are Bargaining, keep points open so you can Package for Success
Keep some points open so you can put packages together to deal with difficult issues. If you just solve the easy points and leave the difficult points to the end you will have no concessions left with which to solve them.
LawBite Legal and Negotiation Advice
LawBite professional negotiators can help you straightaway with all of these issues and more. Just go to the the Legal Advice section and make your enquiry. We’ll get back to you within 24hrs with a meaningful response.
Clive Rich is a highly experienced entertainment and digital media lawyer, who has also successfully run digital businesses for companies such as Sony and Bertelsmann.
A qualified barrister, he has been a lawyer for almost 30 years and has drafted and crafted contracts for a broad spectrum of multi-nationals, major organisations and brands, including Yahoo, Apple, Napster, SanDisk, Myspace and the BBC.
He has also previously run his own legal practice, Rich Futures Ltd in association with the Top 30 UK law firm, Olswang LLP, representing a variety of technology companies and SMEs.
Clive is a qualified Mediator through the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR) and a qualified Arbitrator through the Central Institute of Arbitration (CIArb) in London.
As a negotiator, he is the author of “The Yes Book: the Art of Better Negotiation”, published by Random House in March 2013. Clive has also designed and successfully launched a negotiation App called “Close My Deal”, enabling people to understand the basis of successful negotiation and apply the skills to everyday scenarios. He has provided negotiating coaching and deal making services to a wide range of large organisations and SMEs. He has also been a board member of a number of digital SMEs.
Clive is a devoted father and husband, but when he is not spending time with his family, he likes to unwind by playing golf or watching a variety of sports (football, rugby, cricket). He's a lifelong Milwall FC fan... but don't hold that against him!
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This tip sheet tells you key points about how to negotiate agreements - including managing your attitude, the process and the behaviours on both sides