Negotiation is one of the most-challenging parts of business. Whether you are an employee who has some of these duties, or you are a business owner who is constantly discussing deals, negotiation skills are something that you should develop as fully as possible. To help you toward that end, the following list includes ten skills that you can use to become a better dealmaker with each passing day.
#1 – Preparation
Just like anything else, you are more likely to succeed as a negotiator if you are prepared for the process. Going into discussions with plenty of prep work behind you will lead to a more confident attitude, which is only going to serve you well in this kind of setting.
#2 – Listen Carefully
It is easy to fall into the trap of worrying more about what you are saying than what is being said by the person on the other side of the table. That is a mistake. Those who excel will often listen more than they will talk, only speaking up when they have something important or impactful to say.
#3 – Make Your Points Clearly
You should never assume that the people on the other side of the table are understanding what you are asking for – make it perfectly clear, in no uncertain terms. This is not the time for non-verbal communication, so spell out everything clearly in order to avoid awkward misunderstandings.
#4 – Teamwork Environment
It is often counterproductive to foster an environment of animosity when you are setting up a negotiation. Rather than pitting one side against another in a hostile manner, try to frame the interaction as a friendly interaction in which both sides can help each other toward a positive conclusion.
#5 – Analyze the Problems at Hand
Before entering into talks, analyze the problems that are being faced and think about how they can be resolved to the satisfaction of both sides.
#6 – Be Ethical
You always want to maintain a reputation as someone who will negotiate fairly and ethically with all other parties. If you try to take advantage of people, your reputation will take a hit and you may have trouble getting anyone to speak with you in good faith.
#7 – Keep Your Temper
Nothing is gained by getting emotional in a meeting. Even if you aren’t happy with the direction that discussions are going, don’t allow that frustration to show on your face. Maintain an even disposition through the talks, and stick to the topic at hand until the job is done.
#8 – Problem Solving
Very few deals run smoothly from start to finish. There are sure to be problems that come up along the way, so developing your problem solving skills is key to being a winning negotiator.
#9 – People Skills
There is nothing quite like well-developed people skills when it comes to trying to close deals. If you are someone who can naturally connect with people in a short period of time, you may find that this process is one that comes easy to you.
#10 – Be Decisive
Perhaps more important than everything else on that list, you have to be decisive. Know what you want, work hard to get it, and agree to the deal when the other side lands in a position that you are happy with.