Collaborative Negotiating: A Win-Win Strategy

COLLABORATIVE NEGOTIATING:

Collaborative negotiating is a win-win strategy that can focus the resources of the people involved in the process towards strengthening results, productivity, quality, creativity, and innovation in problem-solving. To use the collaborative approach to negotiating you will have to agree on the aim of negotiations. Before any sort of bargaining can begin, you and your counterpart must define the who-what-where-when-how-and-why of the issue and have a general idea of the objectives and dimensions of a solution.

WHEN USING NEGOTIATING COLLABORATIVELY:

1) Acknowledge the other person's position. Negotiating doesn't require that the two of you hold similar positions of authority. It doesn't require that you like each other. But it does require that you be prepared to treat the other person as an adult, be ready to listen as well as talk, and to recognize that your view is not necessarily the only one. 2) Gain the other person's trust. No matter how logical and factual you are, the other party will doubt your credibility. Good faith commences with symbolic acts like eye contact, shaking hands, pulling out a chair for someone, and it is maintained by consistent honesty. If you want others to level with you, level with them. Although you may feel that an occasional bluff could help your position, don't gamble. The consequences can be disastrous if your hand is called.

1) Identify areas of mutual interest and agreement. Before two people can resolve differences, they must find a common ground where meaningful negotiations can begin. 2) Set a positive accepting tone. The tone of negotiations must be positive. This applies both to what is discussed and how it is discussed. If you have to say something negative, phrase it in a positive way or preface it with a positive statement. Phrase words so that they elicit a positive response to advance your position rather than stop the negotiation. This helps to prevent defensive reactions and promotes affirmative thinking.

1) Be aware of what you are saying and doing. People sometimes become so intent on watching, listening, or speaking to others that they fail to watch themselves. Words, body language, tone of voice, and voice inflection have many ambiguous meanings. Humor is especially troublesome - it can be interpreted as flippant or sarcastic. Only through self-observation can you be certain that you are conveying the message you want in the manner you want. 2) Maintain a question and answer exchange. The heart of any negotiation is the ongoing dialogue during which negotiators discover each other's feelings, understandings, attitudes, prejudices, and objective views of the situation. It enables you to acquire the proper perspectives, separate actual from fancied needs, isolate the real obstacles, and identify what approach to use in obtaining agreement. Ask specific, open-ended questions, and probe areas of conflict to uncover as much information as possible. Your own answers and statements must be equally candid.

Copyright AE Schwartz & Associates All rights reserved. For additional presentation materials and resources: ReadySetPresent and for a Free listing as a Trainer, Consultant, Speaker, Vendor/Organization: TrainingConsortium

CEO, A.E. Schwartz & Associates, Boston, MA., a comprehensive organization which offers over 40 skills based management training programs. Mr. Schwartz conducts over 150 programs annually for clients in industry, research, technology, government, Fortune 100/500 companies, and nonprofit organizations worldwide. He is often found at conferences as a key note presenter and/or facilitator. His style is fast-paced, participatory, practical, and humorous. He has authored over 65 books and products, and taught/lectured at over a dozen colleges and universities throughout the United States.

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