Negotiation skills – what not to do

Why you do not succeed in negotiation

Not well prepared

Have you done your homework? It is really very important. While going for Negotiation meet, one must prepare well:

What you want

You should have information on specs, sizes, qualities, special requirement

When you want

In any negotiation, you must have adequate time – do not negotiate at last minute

Is it price or quality? Whether you are after price or quality

Know your counterpart

what they want, what they know about you, market

Not many options

whether you are buying or selling, one must have alternatives for playing your game well

Have data for comparison

Collect data from market for comparing specs, sizes, quality available

Let me share – when you are buying or selling, know what’s available in the market; and present your upper hand to show what is more in your supply (selling), what’s not in their supply (buying)

Diverting from own style

You have own style; yet sometimes, you try to adapt to their style (thinking to suit them well). This puts you in weaker position.

Talking too much

Let other party talk; and, you listen. Listening pays well. Catch key pointers from their Talk. Offer what you can on those pointers – it’s more relevant and makes it interesting for other party. For example, if you are asked about the price/fees, one can mention something like this – after gaining experience, I am now in this profession full time. You do not have then to add more on what you can do. And may be, the other party can easily pay you the market rate.

Loosing control of the process

You should always be in control of the process. You can then navigate your way.

If not, they can put you in a fix and get what they want. Also, you can discuss relatively easy items before coming to resolve hard situations.

Start bargaining too soon

Do not start on price too soon. Talk other aspects like specs. sizes, your supply (or, your requirement), what they can offer (what’s missing) – before you come to price!

Over-focus on the deal

You should talk on market, economy (in brief), industry news, new players in market – cannot focus only on the deal. Do not forget to include implementation, or packing & delivery as the case may be. It should never be an afterthought in any negotiation.

Lot have been said about Negotiation Dos and Donts. Pathfinders hold hands to win in the process.


Suresh Shah, Pathfinders Enterprise



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