RAB Research Archive

Power Negotiation



Many people cringe at the word negotiation. They think of haggling over the price of a car, hammering out the details of a contract, negotiating a raise or putting a deal together. Those are all examples of what we would refer to as formal negotiations.

In its simpler, less threatening definition, negotiation is simply a discussion aimed at reaching an agreement. By that definition, we are involved in hundreds of negotiations a day. Getting your pet to come in, go out, getting your child to eat their peas or negotiating with yourself as to whether you should work out today. These are all examples of negotiation, but we don’t label it as such.

Roger Fisher, William Ury and Bruce Patton wrote a groundbreaking book on negotiating: Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In. “Like it or not,” says Fisher, “you are a negotiator.” Everyone negotiates something every day.

As you might expect, lawyers have extensive training on the skill of negotiation. Harvard Law School has created a “Harvard Negotiation Project,” and developed a framework to help people prepare effectively for negotiation. They describe the seven-element framework as the essential tool needed to identify your goals, prepare effectively, minimize surprises and take advantage of opportunities as they arise.

1. Interests. Interests are “the fundamental drivers of negotiation,” according to Patton – our basic needs, wants and motivations. Often hidden and unspoken, our interests nonetheless guide what we do and say.

2. Legitimacy. The quest for a legitimate, or fair, deal drives many of our decisions in negotiations.

3. Relationships. Whether you have an ongoing connection with a counterpart or don’t think you’ll ever see them again, you need to effectively manage your relationship as your negotiation unfolds.

4. Alternatives and BATNA. Even as we take part in negotiations, we are aware of our alternatives away from the table — what we will do if the current deal doesn’t pan out. Negotiation preparation should include an analysis of your BATNA, or best alternative to a negotiated agreement, according to Getting to Yes.

5. Options. In negotiations, options refer to any available choice’s parties might consider to satisfy their interests, including conditions, contingencies, and trades.

6. Commitments. In negotiations, a commitment can be defined as an agreement, demand, offer or promise made by one or more parties.

7. Communication. Whether you are negotiating online, via phone or in person, you will take part in a communication process with the other party or parties. The success of your negotiation can hinge on your communication choices.

Just studying these seven elements of negotiation and understanding the building blocks can make you more prepared, comfortable and competent.

Jeff Schmidt is SVP-Professional Development at the Radio Advertising Bureau. You can reach Jeff at Jeff.Schmidt@RAB.com or follow him on social media: Twitter and LinkedIn.

Source: Jeff Schmidt, RAB





Or use your account on Unify

Error message here!

Hide Error message here!

Forgot your password?

Or register your new account on Unify

Error message here!

Error message here!

Hide Error message here!

Lost your password? Please enter your email address. You will receive a link to create a new password.

Error message here!

Or use your account on Unify

Error message here!

Hide Error message here!

Forgot your password?

Or register your new account on Unify

Error message here!

Error message here!

Hide Error message here!

Lost your password? Please enter your email address. You will receive a link to create a new password.

Error message here!

Close