Win-win negotiating is nothing new; it has been in practice for centuries. Win-win is the ultimate outcome in any form of negotiations, whether they are personal or business-oriented. While it may not always be possible to satisfy all parties completely, there are methods of reaching a happy medium more often than not.
Many would argue that all parties reaching a satisfactory outcome is, in essence, the entire point of entering negotiations in the first place. Others believe that they should only enter into negotiations for their own benefit, but this will not help them to develop power as negotiators. In fact, if used too often, it ultimately will destroy one's reputation. Win-win is not a myth used to take advantage of others; rather, it is a sound and reasonable way of doing business and winning future deals. In this article, we will discuss how to achieve a win-win situation in nearly every instance. With a little extra effort on the part of both parties, it is entirely possible to reach a mutually beneficial outcome most of the time.
If things start to get heated, take a break. Do not wait until a full-blown argument has ensued. As soon as tempers seem to be rising, call for lunch or a 15-minute coffee break. This gives everyone a chance to cool off and calm down. Another great idea, and one that is gaining popularity in the business world, is to discuss the hiring of a mediator at the onset of negotiations. An unbiased third party, paid by both sides, will be able to process and present solutions to conflicts in a clear manner, as he or she has no personal interest at stake.
Deadlocks most often occur when one side asks for everything desired up front without allowing for discussion and intermediate banter. A deadlock may also occur when one party will not bend on initial requirements or when expectations are far too high coming in. While many negotiators believe this is the only way to get more of what you want in a negotiation, it also is a sure way to lose out altogether. This type of negotiating is best saved for situations in which a continuing relationship is not desired or at all likely, as is the case when buying or selling a home.
If you plan well and give thought to the points that will be coming up during negotiations, the process will go much more smoothly in general. Be sure to have clear and reasonable arguments to support your requests and requirements. If you cannot explain to the other side exactly why you want what you want and why you should have it, do not sit down at the negotiating table. Knowledge is clearly a strong advantage when entering any negotiation. This does not just apply to knowledge about the other party. You must also have apparent knowledge about your own side of the issue.
Are you asking for a higher salary? Then you should have distinct reasons why this request is justifiable.
Have you thought about the questions the other side may ask and what your response will be? To best persuade the other side to accept your reasoning, you must put yourself in the opposing position. Literally think of all the reasons that party would resist your requests and find a logical reason why the other party should say yes instead. If you cannot find substantive arguments to support your desires, then perhaps you should re-think your demands. Be creative in this process, find all the options, and keep your mind open to ideas that will give everyone the respective desired outcome and need. If a higher salary is what you want and need, but you cannot find current examples of why it is in the best interest of the other side to give it to you, offer to do something in the near future that will justify this request.
What can you deliver that will be beneficial and make the other party believe that yes is the right answer for both sides in the negotiation? Come up with creative possibilities before entering negotiations; this way, you are offering solutions rather than simply making demands. Be clear about what you have to offer and how much you are willing to give, not just what the other party has to offer you; this will lead to more instances of win-win then you can ever imagine.
The Ethics of Negotiation
There are a multitude of books and courses available that extol the benefits of tricking, controlling, and otherwise using underhanded techniques to get what you want when negotiating. While these methods may seem enticing, simply put, they will help you win the battle while subsequently losing the war.
How to Handle Unethical and/or Illegal Behavior
| 1) If the other party is directly involved with you or your company and has substantial public attention, it is wise to make a public statement that the accusations against you are false, briefly explain the truth, and then leave the matter alone.
2) If you no longer are involved with the other party or had only a brief encounter with that party and its representatives are simply looking for attention, then you should simply leave the matter alone and let it blow over. If you are in good standing with others you do business with and have proven yourself to be someone who acts with integrity in the past, most will not believe the false accusations. Most people will take the source into consideration as well.