Negotiating 101: 5 Simple Ways to Improve your Negotiating Skills

Being able to negotiate is a very important skill to have in the workplace, whether it is to your boss or to your clients. However, not many people have the skills to negotiate well.

Here are five ways you can do to improve your negotiating skills:

negoiating tips

1.    Seek a win-win outcome

Of course, you would like to win. However, what’s better than winning is to win together. When you are happy, the other party is happy as well. This way, your clients will be more open towards whatever it is you are proposing, and not put their barriers up because the think they will be disadvantaged from your offer.

2.    Listen

One of the best things to do while negotiating an offer is to: Listen. Listen to what the other party is saying, and don’t just push your thoughts towards them. Really listen and take note on what their demands are. Listen and find a solution that can benefit both parties.

3.    Do your homework

When negotiating, always be prepared. Dig up their companies, find out what they need, familiarise yourself with their industry and business methods. Offer something of value to them, and not just something that will benefit you.

4.    Walk out if you have to

One of the worst decisions you can make as a negotiator is not being able to walk out of a disastrous negotiation. Ending a negotiation without a settlement is a business decision, and not an emotional decision. If you know the other party, for example if the potential client is a friend of yours, and you feel reluctant to walk away as it will damage your relationship, and yet the company’s well-being is at stake, it might be better not to walk in in the first place.

5.    It is not personal

It is business and not personal. Again, it is not personal. Don’t carry an emotional baggage full of negotiation fails in your conscience. Don’t feel offended personally if the other party walks out of the negotiation. If you’re being clouded by your own emotion, odds are you might not be able to make the best decision while negotiating.

Want to get better at negotiating? The Institute of Management offers a Negotiation Skills course. Visit our website to find out more.