Tips to help you negotiate better today

By Tiffany Rowe

When you’re running a small business, having the skills to negotiate well is helpful in all sorts of ways, no matter the industry you’re in. As an entrepreneur, you will find you can accomplish a whole lot more, and do so more easily, if you have the ability to negotiate with the people you deal with day in and day out.

From suppliers and employees through to investors, lenders, manufacturers, journalists and many other contacts, there are numerous people who you’ll want to convince to give you more favorable terms. It pays to enroll in an online business certificate program or other type of course where you can learn the ins and outs about how to enhance your business skills in negotiation. However, to get started, here are simple tips to help you negotiate better straight away.

[amazon_link asins=’1505559871′ template=’ProductAd’ store=’succeedingi0d-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’1ec27e94-93fa-11e8-baef-7374f0f50c99′]Be clear about your objective

It’s important to be clear about your objective before you start any negotiations. What is it that you want to achieve by the end? You also need to understand what your bottom line is; that is, what is your number-one, absolute must you require to have the deal work for you, or what is the lowest number you can possibly accept to be paid for doing a project? Conversely, what is the most you’re willing to pay someone else for a product or service?

[amazon_link asins=’0990367193′ template=’ProductAd’ store=’succeedingi0d-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’2f0872b1-93fa-11e8-b704-4d7a5cf872ea’]A successful negotiation happens when you achieve something that falls on the scale between your ultimate goal and your last straw. This could be on the higher or lower end of the scale, depending on each negotiation.

It helps to think about a Plan B for the conversation ahead of you. What is the best alternative you can come up with that you can fall back on if Plan A doesn’t come to fruition? It’s helpful to have numerous practical and realistic options in mind. Know what you can do if you and the other parties are unable to reach an agreement.

Be prepared before negotiations begin

Apart from identifying your goals, bottom line and alternative options, you should also research the parties you’ll be dealing with.

Learn as much as you can about the other side, whether this is a company or an individual. The more you know about them, the more information you’ll be able to use during negotiations. Discover, if possible, what is important to your “opposition” and how far they might be willing to go to finalize the deal.

It pays to speak to some of their current or previous business associates, if you can, for insights. The internet can be your friend in this.

Everything you learn can go into your strategy as another part of your planning process. Don’t enter negotiations without having first devised some tactics to use during the conversation(s). This strategy should include factors related to the life of the agreement you might come to, too. For example, there may be concessions on terms which will help protect your interests during the life of the agreement or which enable the agreement to be extended.

Part of your strategy should also include using strong communication skills. This refers not to just what you say but also how you present it. Using effective body language is vital, as is being able to read the body language of others during negotiations.

Plus, don’t be so focused on talking about what you want that you forget to listen carefully to the other side. The more you listen, the more you’ll be able to pick up on what is actually important to them. This can provide excellent negotiation fodder.

[amazon_link asins=’1548165972′ template=’ProductAd’ store=’succeedingi0d-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’3c9d9f78-93fa-11e8-8e4b-e1d571a79ba9′]Look for areas of common ground and a win-win outcome

Lastly, to complete a successful negotiation, you must look for areas of common ground during conversations. If you can pick up on things both sides immediately agree on, this enables you to sign off on some parts of the agreement ASAP, which can set a positive tone for the negotiation. You can then build from there.

Also, as you negotiate, look for ways each party can win in some way. A win-win outcome means each side comes away feeling like they have gotten something important to them. If you discover elements that are top of mind for others but not a big deal for you, this gives you a great way to gain favor without it costing much.


Tiffany Rowe is a marketing authority who prides herself in her ability to create and provide high quality content that audiences find valuable. She also enjoys connecting with other bloggers and collaborating for exclusive content in various niches. With many years of experience, Tiffany has found herself more passionate than ever to continue developing content and relationship across multiple platforms and audiences.

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