Caution without proper deliberation is nothing more than indecisiveness for lack of direction.
All seven of the members were in a state of confusion. They had differing opinions about what action to take, and they felt time running out. The leader of the group said, we have to proceed with caution. Then, he asked each individual, in private, to state how they arrived at their conclusion.
Finally, he reconvened the meeting. And he emphatically announced the action that the group would take. The power contained in his pronouncement left no ambiguity about his conviction to that action. Everyone looked at him in amazement. That was due to the respect they had for how he’d come to his decision. They viewed him as being more valuable and powerful than he’d been in the past.
What do you consider before making decisions? And, to what degree does caution play a role in your decision-making process? The following are ways you can improve the perception of your power and make yourself more valuable to others.
Caution Versus Haste:
Depending on the circumstances, making hasty decisions can be beneficial. You can say the same about being overly cautious when making decisions, too. But too much caution can cause an opportunity to dissolve before you have the chance to address it. While being hasty can vanish future opportunities that never materialize because of your current haste.
If you have to make impactful choices that will occur in the future, prepare for them sooner than later. Consult knowledge holders that can give sage advice. From that, adopt the most beneficial direction. Then, allow your thoughts to simmer into a more cohesive form of logic. That will dampen emotions from hijacking your thought process.
Seeking Advice – Setting The Stage:
When seeking advice, let those that offer an opinion know that you may not wholly agree with their assessment. And, inform them that their information will have an impact on the final decision. Doing that will make them feel valued.
By framing how you’ll use their input, you set expectations. And, when you set expectations, you shape the boundaries for what might occur. When you do that, it disallows others from legitimately stating they thought something else would happen.
People want you to listen to them – hear them. Let them speak.
They’ll perceive themselves as possessing power because they’ll think you thought enough to solicit their opinion. That’ll enhance the value they have of you.
Thus, by seeking their advice, you’ll increase their perspective of the value you have for them, which will bestow that power back to you. It becomes a completed circle. By making others feel good, they’ll feel good about being a source of value.
Caution – be mindful that people view environments based on their outlook. And that will shade how they see the world and the opinions they have. Those variables will impact their thoughts and suggestions.
What does this have to do with negotiations?
First, you have to have a firm understanding of the problem you’re addressing. That means not miscommunicating per how the other negotiator views the situation. As mentioned earlier, you should seek input from those that may add value to the final solution or outcome. When negotiating, that includes the other negotiator, too.
When seeking the process that led to his decisions, understand the mindset that developed those conclusions. If possible, discover his advisors and their mindset, too. Also, assess how you might play to their vanities if they exist. Everyone wants to feel valued. That leads them to believe their more powerful. As it serves your purpose, enhance their feeling by seeking their input. If getting what you want in the negotiation is essential to you, doing that will aid you in achieving a successful negotiation outcome … and everything will be right with the world.
“How To Avoid Danger From Being A Strong Negotiator”
Some negotiators emit weakness when they’re negotiating. There’s danger in doing that. Other negotiators exude strength. There’s danger in that, too. A successful negotiator knows how to project power while avoiding the threat of being perceived as overbearing, stubborn, or unrelenting. They also know when to appear robust and when to appear weak.
The following are ways that you can be a strong negotiator while avoiding danger and becoming more successful in your negotiations.
First, be mindful of the negotiator type with whom you’re negotiating. Some negotiators will view you as an opponent or adversary, while others will see you as an advisor or friend. It’s essential to identify and know the different characteristics displayed by negotiators. That’ll determine how you’ll negotiate with them.
Adversary Versus Advisor:
If a negotiator perceives you as too overbearing, he may become obstinate. When you appear weak, some negotiators will take advantage of you. So, you must know when to adopt the right persona. You can determine that by how the other negotiator sees you versus how you wish him to view you.
When dealing with someone that notes you as an adversary, his mindset is, he’s in a rigorous engagement, and there’s only one winner, him. With this type of negotiator, stand your ground. Challenge him before making concessions. Make him earn what he receives. That will enhance the respect he has for you and your abilities.
When viewed as an advisor or friend, display a demeanor of agreeability. You want this negotiator type to feel at ease with you. Create a climate whereby ideas are free to be exchanged. That will encourage that person to be more amenable to your offers, thoughts, and ideas. Also, he won’t feel threatened when you propose something that may appear to be out-of-bounds.
When projecting strength or weakness, know when to switch roles. Displaying the advisor role (e.g., I’d like to gather a little more information so I can best determine how I might meet your request), is an excellent way to break the frame. It’ll allow you to morph from a position of weakness to strength or vice versa. Be sure to change your demeanor when doing so. Do that by adjusting your body language to meet the new image that you project.
As an example, if you’re acting the role of a competent person and you switch to a weaker one, sit smaller in your chair. Do that by slouching, and drawing your body closer to itself as though you were afraid.
To project an image of strength, expand the space you’re occupying. Accomplish that by increasing the size of your body, and making big gestures when you speak. You can also move your objects further away. You want to occupy more space to appear more confident. That nonverbal gesture states that you feel comfortable and unafraid of anything in the environment.
You can also use inflections in your voice to cast the appropriate demeanor. Do that by placing a stronger or weaker inference on the words that are most important to you. That will add value to your persona.
Like everything in life – the more you know about the environment you’ll be in and the people in it, the better prepared you can be for what might occur. Knowing how to move back and forth stealthfully, from a forceful negotiator image to one less dynamic, will allow you to have more influence over the negotiation. Plus, you won’t have to worry about being perceived as an ogre when you adopt a more rigorous personality. That will keep the negotiation wolves away from your door, those that would seek retribution for you being too strong against them … and everything will be right with the world.
He was the number one problem solver in his company. And he’d been working for days in solitude to find a solution to the latest challenge. Finally, after laboring in thoughts for hours without a break, he felt his thoughts circling. He said this is going nowhere. I’m like a dog chasing its tail. One of these thoughts will have to be good enough. I can’t do any better. With that, he stopped thinking. Good enough had prevented him from being amazing.
You can be confronted by several challenges that occur in the future when you stop at good. The biggest one is, you’ll never get better. And not getting better will prevent you from becoming amazing. Your mental state of mind will say, you’ve settled for mediocrity in the past, do it this time, too. That thought may not be an outward expression. But it will be the signal from your subconscious mind that will stop you from reaching your full potential and higher goals.
The following are three ways you can move past good and become amazing.
Know your peak times.
Everyone has different times in the day when they’re mentally more alert. Thoughts seem to flow through them like a flowing fountain. If you know when that time occurs for you, attempt to be your most creative during those times. To enhance your thinking process, eliminate all obstacles that might intrude on what might be your state of zen. By removing distractions, you’ll ensure that you stay in that state longer. And your creativity will be extended.
Be aware of when you’re under pressure or stress.
Most people don’t perform well under pressure. And the more it exists, the more likely you are to make mistakes. That can lead to stress. Then, you begin to fight a vicious cycle of tension, which leads to stress, which increases the pressure. When you experience the weight of undue burdens or anxiety, it’s time to stop. You won’t do yourself much good if you continue to burn your brain cells. All you’ll be doing is grinding your mind to a slow halt.
Don’t beat yourself up. That’ll only hamper your thinking process. Sometimes, amid frustration, you may begin to demean yourself. Don’t do it. Resist saying things like, I’m so stupid. I knew I was too dumb to do this. First, your subconscious hears what you think, even if you don’t say it out loud. And, your subconscious will attempt to create the reality that you state to be your belief. Thus, be cautious about what you say and what you think when you address a situation. If you believe you’re not good enough to conquer or complete a task, you’ll never get to the point of where amazing resides.
Know where help is and how to use it.
Get the thoughts of others to assist you with your thinking. When two people consider how to solve a problem, they create different ideas than if one was doing so. Thus, when you find yourself challenged by the absence of ideas, ask others to join you. Just make sure that you extend invitations to those that will add to your thoughts and not distract from them.
What does this have to do with negotiations?
Some people negotiate as a team because they realize that there are more significant opportunities that might otherwise go unobtained. In so doing, they enhance the probability of an amazing outcome and not one that’s just good.
If you consider how you might turn a good negotiation into an amazing one before you enter into it, that singular act will put you on the road to an incredible outcome. From there, you can enhance the process. Just incorporate what I mentioned in steps 1, 2, and 3 … and everything will be right with the world.
“Here Is What You Need To Know To Win More Negotiations”
He entered the negotiation completely unprepared. And he jumped at the first offer the other negotiator made. After they departed the negotiator that had extended the offer said to a cohort, I wish all of my negotiations were that easy. That guy had no negotiation skills.
Hopefully, no one will ever say that about you. Implement the following steps in your negotiations, and you’ll decrease that probability.
Identify what a winning outcome is for you and the other negotiator.
Take into account the resources you and the other negotiator will have to enhance your efforts. Those resources might consist of other people at the negotiation table and some that are not.
Determine what either of you might do to achieve that outcome.
Assess what might hamper the outcome you’d like.
Identify the body language gestures you’ll note to assess when the other negotiator is becoming exasperated. Set the baseline for those gestures by observing how he acts when he’s calm.
Other Influencing Factors:
Know the outside sources of power that might influence the other negotiator.
For more considerable influence, understand the way he thinks and the motives that drive his actions.
Know your pressure points and those of your opponent. You can gain influence by applying pressure on those not at the negotiation table – leverage that. Remember, the other negotiator can do the same to you. To decrease that probability, minimize those that may expose your vulnerabilities. Doing so will make you less susceptible to pressure.
Know how many phases there may be in the negotiation. If the other negotiator is the first of many that you’ll be negotiating against, he may be attempting to gain insight into your strategy. Then, when you think you’ve reached an agreeable outcome, he’s removed. And his team installs someone else. That’s the beginning of the next phase of the talks. That can occur throughout many stages. Be prepared for it.
Recognize when you’re in a zone – everything is going right. Also, be aware when things are misaligned. When that occurs, stop the negotiation. Take a break an assess what’s happening. Once refreshed, re-engage.
Read Body Language:
Gather nonverbal queues that reveal hidden thoughts.
Eyes – What can you glean from someone’s eyes? You can gain insight into their demeanor, the degree of respect they have for you and themselves. And you can note when they become uneasy about an offer. To record such occurrences, observe the eye movement when engaged in regular exchanges. Then, as things intensify, note the quickening pace of the eye movement, the direction up or down in which is glanced. Those movements will signal uncomfortableness. Take note when sensing that and be prepared to take action.
Hands – When people speak, it’s natural to use hand gestures. As you progress in the negotiation, note the degree your opponent alters those gestures. There’s value in noting the difference between him saying, and we’re this close to a successful deal while holding his thumb and forefinger a quarter of an inch apart, versus two inches. He’s displaying his measurement to how close he thinks you are to closing the deal.
Speech patterns – Words convey thoughts. And specific words have more meaning than others. Thus, lend attention to the words used and their pronouncement when someone extends an offer. As an example, if someone were to say in a robust intonation, that’s my best deal, take it or leave it. They’d sound more convincing than if they stated it in a weaker tone and with their head bowed. Gain additional information by listening and observing.
Have clearly defined points indicating when it’s time to exit the negotiation. Establish them during your planning session.
Allow the other negotiator points to exit without losing face.
Assess the degree a winning outcome has changed as you’ve negotiated. If it’s altered drastically, consider postponing it.
Many factors influence the flow and outcome of a negotiation. The better prepared you are for what might occur, the better your chances to control the factors that determine the outcome. Having more control means, you should be able to keep the other negotiator happy with what he receives, while you obtain what you seek. The strategies mentioned will help you do just that. They’ll assist you in achieving your goals … and everything will be right with the world.
He had a crucial meeting at 9 a.m. the following day. It was with his company’s largest client. Many months had gone into the preparation of what would be the biggest deal the company had ever had. And everyone was counting on him to land that big deal.
So why do you think he allowed his so-called friends to talk him into going out the night before the big meeting? He knew what was at stake the next morning. They asked him to have just one drink. One drink turned into two, and two turned into nine. Finally, being inebriated, he said to his friends, I must go. I must be ready for that big meeting tomorrow. By the time he got home and went to sleep, it was 2:47 a.m. When he awoke, it was 11:09 a.m. He missed the meeting. He also lost what had up until then been a good career – because he got fired!
Has anything like that ever happened to you? Your so-called friends, instead of supporting you, distracted you from a goal. Maybe it wasn’t to the degree of what occurred in the story. In that case, the decision to go out the night before the big meeting wasn’t just a wrong decision – it was stupid! More than likely, you’ve made stupid decisions too. So why do you allow that to happen? There are several reasons. The following are some of them and how to protect yourself from falling prey.
Friends Versus Associates:
Be careful with whom you surround yourself. And don’t associate with people that work against your goals. Understand the value of real friends. They help protect you from harm. And they support your ambitions.
Associates, on the other hand, are people that may be close to you – but they’re usually individuals that care more about their self-interest than yours. They may not share your goals or outlook that you possess.
Here’s the catch, friends can lead you into bad decisions. If they do so once, you may consider forgiving them. If they do so frequently, move them out of the friend category. And ultimately you might consider moving them out of your life.
Whatever label you assign to those that are friends versus associates, be mindful of who you let into the friend category. Those individuals will have a more significant impact on your life.
Strong And Discipline:
There is a strength of mind and a mind that’s disciplined. You more than likely possess either depending on what you’re contemplating. But when confronted with decisions of significance, you need to combine those two forces.
When you know you have a lot riding on the outcome of a decision, consider the consequences of not being able to perform at your best. If that doesn’t prove to be substantial enough leverage, think what you might lose. Most people have a greater fear of loss than they do for the power of additional gain.
To ascend to higher heights, you must possess an attitude that states, no one will stop you. Then, commit to yourself to stop making stupid decisions. Once fortified by that belief, you’ll become empowered. That’s when you’ll possess the ability to achieve more consistently. That’ll also be the time when you stop making stupid bad decisions … and everything will be right with the world.
What does this have to do with negotiations?
Everyone makes bad decisions sometimes. It may be due to erroneous information, fear of not wanting to confront a situation boldly, or misperceiving the severity of it. Regardless of the reason, when you know you can avoid turning a bad mistake into a stupid one, don’t turn it into one.
In a negotiation, the more time you spend in it, the higher the chance to make bad decisions. Most negotiators want to see a bargaining session to its conclusion. That leaves them vulnerable to turning a wrong decision into a stupid one.
First, be alert to how you’re making decisions when you negotiate. If you feel pressure leading the choices you make, view that as a warning signal. It’ll be the alarm that alerts you to the possible doorway opening that leads to worse decisions.
“For Greater Success Women Need To Be Better Negotiators”
People that negotiate better than others tend to have greater success in life. That’s true to a point. Because, if a man and a woman have equal skills as a negotiator, in general, women tend to get the shorter outcome. For that reason, women need to be even better negotiators.
… I asked what challenges she has when negotiating. She said, “none – I never have anything to negotiate.” After I probed by saying, never? She, replied, “I took my brother once to help me negotiate the purchase of my car. I figured the dealer would take advantage of a woman alone. But my brother wasn’t any good. He just said yes to everything the dealer said. He didn’t know anything about negotiations. I might as well be alone.”
Most people don’t realize when they’re negotiating. Negotiation occurs when you’re attempting to achieve an outcome. Anytime you’re trying to get someone to embrace your beliefs – you’re negotiating. Some consider that influencing. But in reality, it’s a negotiation.
As you’re most likely aware, my motto is, “You’re always negotiating.” That means, even when you’re engaged in the influence process, you’ve most likely had prior interactions that shape how you address someone. Those previous interactions were negotiations. You exchanged in the give-and-take process that’s influencing how you currently interact with someone of like-mindedness or appearance.
That’s important for women to remember when they’re negotiating. If they possess a shackled mindset, they’ll be less efficient when negotiating. Instead, women must look at the situation and think, I’m free to be who I am. My past is not my present. And I will not allow old thoughts that hindered my progress from slowing me down. I will become stronger and move more boldly towards my future. Then, learn more about how to become a better negotiator.
Know Your Assets:
There were several factors about negotiations that the lady I was speaking with didn’t recognize.
She didn’t recognize that she’s continuously negotiating. That means being aware of where one action will lead and how it will impact the next step. Planning your steps will give you insights into what you’ll need as you engage them.
Since she thought she never negotiated, there were no contingency plans for situations she might encounter. Always plan how you’ll act and react before entering situations. Women should consider how their gender might cause others to treat them. The more important the outcome, the more one should plan.
Her brother was an asset. His presence gave her unforeseen leverage. But since she didn’t know how to use it, she forewent that advantage. Sometimes, having the right person with you in a negotiation adds value to your effort. As a woman, consider how you might employ seen and unseen leverage in your negotiations.
When negotiating in what might be an awkward situation, consider allies to enlist to strengthen your position. Look for those that have skills that will offset those of the other negotiator.
Know Your Negotiation Counterpart:
Negotiators have different styles of negotiating. And some have differing thoughts about negotiating against women. To understand the type of negotiator you’re dealing with understand their mind.
Women have built-in advantages in most societies. And that’s their gender. In general, most men don’t think women can negotiate effectively. A woman can make that ill-thought a man’s peril. And that’s the hidden advantage. Women can take advantage of men’s perception by luring male counterparts into negotiation traps. Then, she can spring it before he realizes he’s trapped.
Some women are relieved when they negotiate against another woman. Don’t fall prey to this thought. As a woman, it can be tougher negotiating with some women than some men. Some women believe they have to be tough to be respected. And they won’t cut you slack because you’re the same gender.
Before engaging in what might be a tough negotiation, practice. Do so in mock negotiations. Everyone can benefit from them. But women can gain more enormous benefits by practicing with male counterparts that might act like those that she’ll face at the negotiation table.
Never discount the value of practicing. And never neglect the importance of mock negotiations. They can simulate real-life reality before it becomes that.
The lady with whom I spoke had a commonality with other women about negotiations. Some either fail to even recognize when they’re negotiating, or they ratchet down their negotiation efforts out of fear. In either case, they shortchange themselves. They also forgo opportunities that could bring benefits for those that are dearest.
The question becomes, as a woman, is being a better negotiator worth the effort that it’ll take to become more successful? Others are depending on you! Commit today to enhance your negotiation skills … and everything will be right with the world.
“What Stops You The Most From Being Amazingly Successful”
Are there times when you feel you’re at the gate of success only to find that it’s locked? And you don’t have the key. You believe you’re so close and still so far away. Even worse, do you become frustrated or dissatisfied because you don’t perceive any success at all? Does that cause dismay, despair, or even depression in you?
If so, don’t disband your dissatisfaction factor. There’s nothing wrong with those emotions. If you never have such sensations, you’ll never be as successful as you could become. The reason is, you’d be settling for mediocrity. You would not be demanding more from yourself. You’d be breathing, but you wouldn’t be alive. You’d be a member of the walking dead waiting for your burial time.
Thus, those feelings of dismay, despair, or depression are self-signals summoning you to dig deeper within yourself to find the drive that’ll take you higher. Listen to that desire. It’s your hidden source of motivation that will spur you to greater heights.
As we go through life, we prepare for what we wish to become – obtain – possess. The more preparation we put into such endeavors, the sooner we expect to receive rewards for our efforts. When they don’t occur according to our timeframe, we become burdened with anxieties. And that can begin the downward spiral of the opposite goal we seek.
Stop the madness! Allowing yourself to become mentally disabled, due to your perception of slow progress, doesn’t enhance your growth. It only slows an otherwise quicker pace at which you could advance. And that’s a dilemma you don’t need. In essence, you won’t improve faster because you’ll be preventing yourself from doing so.
So why do we allow ourselves to fall prey to the traps that lead to immobility? We work hard and do what’s expected to advance. And instead of having a wealth of advancement rushing to take us onto new heights, we appear disabled by the painstaking drip of slow or no perceived progress.
When besieged by the thought of slow or no progress in your life, take time to rest mentally. You may be in a state of mental overload. That state will not allow you to see the preverbal forest for the trees. Clear your mental clutter. Think about the time when you were most successful. Consider what you did to get to that point. There’ll be lessons embedded in that reflection. Thus, you can replicate what you did to become successful in the past. You may have to alter some of those past steps. But there’ll be footprints that can lead you back to a successful path. Success always leaves footprints.
You can continue doing what you’re doing, and you’ll continue receiving the same outcomes that you’ve been receiving. Or, you can commit to alter your thinking and begin to become more successful. Either way, the choice is yours. Choose wisely … and everything will be right with the world.
What does this have to do with negotiations?
Sometimes you can have the best plans entering into a negotiation and quickly discover that you have to abandon them. That can be due to any set of variables. You misplanned due to your misperception of what was most at stake. You misunderstood the intent of the other negotiator. Or, you became sidetracked by an act of God that you had no control over. Regardless of the reason, if you allow yourself to become frustrated, you’ll begin to lose your mental composure. And when that occurs, you’ve started to lose the negotiation.
In a negotiation, focus on your goals. Instead of becoming frustrated, become fortified. Do so by allowing yourself the mental time and space to reflect on your next actions. It’s better to call a time out than to be placed in a position of being out of time and making a bad deal. If you never act out of haste, you’ll be less likely to make hasty actions. Never forget that hasty actions can cause you to be less successful.
“Do You Know How To Avoid Negotiation Manipulation Mistakes”
Before they began the negotiation, he heaped constant prays on her. She blushed and wondered if he had a deeper affinity. Finally, she said, “okay, enough with the manipulation efforts – let’s get down to business.” To which he replied, “I’ve been discussing business all along.” That’s when she said in a snarky tone, “the way you were carrying on, I thought you wanted to date me.” At that, he became a little crestfallen. That’s when he realized his prays had been perceived as manipulation. He had made a big mistake! Do you know how to avoid negotiation manipulation mistakes?
Continue reading and you’ll discover how to avoid and use manipulation in your negotiations.
Manipulations – good – bad – it depends:
Whether someone feels manipulated depends on their perspective. If you ask most people what the definition of manipulation is, they’ll state that it’s a negative act. It can mean to advantage oneself based on the skill applied to do so. It can also mean to address with skill a process or treatment – in that case, it’s neutral – neither negative or positive.
Before engaging someone in a negotiation, understand their perspective of prays, deference, and appreciation of one’s achievements. And be mindful not to be perceived as effusive. You don’t want your intent to be misperceived.
Some negotiators begin a negotiation unaware of how their actions are being perceived. Those individuals should acquire greater negotiation skills.
Smart negotiators are aware that every action may be scrutinized to disclose hidden intents. They look for body language signals to indicate indifference to offers and counteroffers.
Being unobservant opens the door to misperception. When you observe signals that indicate you’re being perceived as brownnosing or deceitful, those may be signs that you’ve wandered into the realm of making manipulation mistakes. Seek feedback as to how you’re being perceived and if necessary, clarify your intent.
Body Language Observance:
When detecting perceived manipulation through someone’s body language, there are a few signs to observe.
Head-cock to either side – This gesture indicates interest. It may be saying, where’s this going? Take note of the number of times the head moves from one side of the body to the other. That’ll indicate a greater intent to gain more insight about what’s being said. Look for other signs to add deeper meaning to head-cocking gestures. Smiles, along with interruptions, can lend to that insight.
Smiles – A smile doesn’t necessarily mean agreement. With perceived manipulation, a smile may indicate, let’s see how far he’ll go. Or, I don’t believe he’s saying that. If you have doubt about a gesture’s significance, inquire about how it’s perceived. Some people find themselves on a slippery slope because they don’t recognize the first step. Don’t let that happen to you.
Interruptions – When someone interrupts you, they want to alter what they’re hearing. They may be asking you to cite your case differently for greater clarity. The point is, they’re seeking more information. Take heed. They may be signaling hidden thoughts that states they’ve become more attuned to what you’re saying. Understand why that’s so.
Manipulation can be an effective tool if it’s used correctly. To do so, understand the mindset of the other individual – and his boundaries about perceived effusiveness and lack of respect. Those boundaries will be the sweet spot to place your praise. Skirt those boundaries and you’ll venture into murky waters.
The best time to manipulate someone is when you slightly alter what they already believe to be true. It’s even better if you’ve established trust first. Thus, the more they see themselves in your reflection, the greater the opportunity for manipulation.
Please be aware not to abuse this technique. It can have deadly consequences in a negotiation. Always treat your opponent with the utmost respect. If you don’t intentionally manipulate someone towards harm, you’ll have greater negotiation outcomes … and everything will be right with the world.
“The first thought I had was, am I going to die?” Those were the words a lady recounted to her friend. She was referring to a scary situation she feared would become a #crisis. It happened when she was at a bank and two men walked in. They hollered, “this is a stick-up!”
Hopefully, you’ve never had such an experience. But if one were to occur, what would you do? I know that depends on the specific situation and circumstances. But what do you think your initial thoughts might be? If you’re considering that, you’re doing what you should do to confront a potential crisis – prepare for it ahead of time.
This article will help you think about how to prepare for such occurrences if one should befall you.
When you’re threatened, your body goes into a fight or flight response. During that time, you make snap judgments about the action you’ll take. Upon hindsight, those actions may not be rational.
In a potential crisis, to limit irrational actions consider how you might act/react before entering them. You might note exit doors, hiding places, and resources that can aid you. Some of the resources might be other people that share your plight. Be strategic in your thoughts and planning.
The more prepared you are for a crisis, the better your response will be. And that could turn out to be a lifesaver.
Fight, Flight, Freeze:
When you’re threatened, you begin an evaluation process to assess the threat and the best course of action to take. The problem is, the clock doesn’t stop ticking during that time. You can’t call a timeout. And the situation could escalate during your deliberations.
Most people are aware of the fight or flight response. It occurs when we become fearful. But there’s another possible response to consider. It’s called the freeze response. It’s somewhat like the ‘shelter in place’ command. During that time, you limit your movement. That’s an attempt to lessen attention to yourself. It’ll limit your possible exposure and harm. Note the differences between the ‘shelter in place’ and freeze response. In the latter, you make no movement at all.
Never overlook the potential usage of the freeze response. It’s another tool that could be your lifesaver. Plan for the possibility of its use. If you know through calculations when it might be most applicable, you’ll be more flexible in the actions you adopt … and everything will be right with the world.
What does this have to do with negotiations?
Very seldom does a negotiation escape some form of crisis. They may be small or large depending on what’s at stake. But nevertheless, if they create trauma for you or the other negotiator, you’ll seek a plausible solution to them. Thus, during your planning stage of the negotiation, consider the actions you’ll adopt to confront troublesome situations. You should also consider what might cause them to escalate and how you’ll defuse them.
A crisis in a negotiation usually evolves over time – it doesn’t happen suddenly. Therefore, you can see it coming. When you sense a crisis is gathering strength, address it with a prepared action. That action might consist of the fight, flight, or freeze response. That means you’d dig in your heels (fight), choose to end the negotiation – or call a timeout (flight or freeze), or do nothing (freeze). You’d adopt a ‘freeze state’ to see what the other negotiator might do from that point.
In any negotiation, the options you adopt to address situations determine the flow and outcome of the negotiation. A crisis is the greatest threat to a successful negotiation outcome. It can derail a negotiation. Thus, the better prepared you are to address it, the greater control you’ll have over and during the negotiation.
“Great Negotiators Know How To Ask Good and Better Questions“
Some negotiators believe, there’s no such thing as a bad question. They believe all questions solicit additional information – information that you wouldn’t receive if the question went unasked. I don’t think that’s true!
Some questions weaken your negotiation position. They project a lack of perceived foresight. And they can allow openings for the other negotiator to take control. But you can turn some weak questions into better ones that benefit your negotiation position.
If you’re somewhat confused right now, how do you feel about your confusion? Do you possess a desire to discover more on this topic? Do you have some other need? That’s the power of questions. They can control the thoughts of the other negotiator and put you in a power position. Questions can also lead to the other negotiator pulling away from you. Thus, you must know how and when to use them.
This article delivers insights about when and how to ask better questions to improve your negotiation position.
A bad question is made worse by its timing. That can decrease the perception of your persona and make you appear weak. But what might appear to be a bad question posed with proper timing can gain a wealth of information. That would turn it into a good question.
When asking questions such as, how can I help you? Or, what can I do to assist – you display a lack of knowledge about the needs of the person you’re soliciting?
Nevertheless, there is a place for questions that may appear to be weak or lack specificity. You’d use them when they enhance the planned persona you wish to project. In such times, you’d use the mentioned questions as tools of positioning. Questions such as, how can I help you will cast a broader net. It will gain a deeper insight into the information you’re seeking.
Better questions solicit better information. And they heightened your sense of control as a negotiator. Such questions …
use what-if scenarios. What-if scenarios explore the realm of possibility. They don’t commit you to action unless the scenario is agreed on by all parties. Example – what if we lowered your cost and shipped the items early, could we close the deal today? If the other negotiator was in agreement, you’d have a deal. If she wasn’t, you will have gained insight into her negotiation position. Either way, you’ve gained valuable information.
challenge existing norms. When challenging popular beliefs, you’ll attract attention. Depending on how your questions are received you’ll become more influential. You might be placed in a position of having to defend your position, too. So, consider the types of questions you’ll use to challenge popular norms and how they’ll position you in the negotiation.
can’t be answered quickly. When asking questions that someone can’t readily answer, they go into thought mode. Depending on the environment, you can throw them a lifeline by answering the question yourself. Or, you can let them flounder. By allowing them to flounder, you allow others to view their lack of knowledge. That will decrease their perceived expertise. By saving them, they’re spared from floundering. That will ingratiate them to you.
Assumptive questions allow you to be perceived as possibly knowing more than you do. You can use them to test the other negotiator’s position or offer. To do so, make a statement that infers you have secret information. You can also make the statement sound like a question. Example – “You’ve given larger discounts in the past, correct?” After that, be very attuned to the response per the inflection in the voice and mannerisms displayed. Look for signs of agreement, lies, or doubt. If you sense either, probe deeper.
The questions asked determines the information that’s received. And the timing of those questions detracts from or enhances that information. To increase your ability to gather quality information in your negotiations, ask good timely questions that lead to better answers … and everything will be right with the world.