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“Pandemic – Here Is What Will Make You A Better Negotiator ” – Negotiation Tip of the Week

“A crisis begins with the perception of those around you. And that’s the reason you should be mindful with whom you associate.” -Greg Williams, The Master Negotiator & Body Language Expert (Click to Tweet)

“Pandemic – Here Is What Will Make You A Better Negotiator “

We’re in the midst of a pandemic – there’s a shorter supply of life’s essentials! And people are stressing me out by their behavior. I’m not sure what I’m going to do, but if things become more drastic, I may start to do radical things! So said one friend to another.

Due to the worldwide pandemic, people are confronting a whirlwind of daunting times. And we will not rid ourselves of these times soon – because there will be health and financial repercussions for months and possibly years to come. One way to mitigate the challenging times ahead is to become a better negotiator. This article will assist you in gaining the insight to do that.   


Essential provisions will be difficult to obtain in pandemic times or times when people feel threatened. Because the natural inclination is to protect one’s self when threats are perceived, people will hoard perceived necessities. Note that I didn’t say when threats are prevalent. I draw attention to that distinction to highlight what may be calm for one person might be someone else’s perceived calamity. That means you must address people’s perspective based on how and what they’re sensing.

Thus, when it comes to securing supplies to protect your wellbeing, consider the relationships you can establish before times become more perilous. And if you’re stuck in uncertain times without having those relationships built, think of whom you can create connections with to reach your end goal. Connecting with other people that have resources is a way to use their leverage in situations.


Regardless of dangerous times, as a negotiator, always look for opportunities to use leverage. It will enhance your negotiation efforts. There are several forms of it that you can use. And two of those are cash and other people’s resources.

The best way to implement the use of leverage is to increase the value perception of your offer. As a simple example, if you were out of your life-saving medication and had no way to retrieve it when ordinary means of transportation were unavailable, you might borrow a neighbor’s vehicle (i.e., use other people’s resources). You could do that in exchange for something the neighbor needed then or in the future. If that option was blocked, due to the neighbor having limited gas for his vehicle, you might entice the neighbor to oblige your request by offering money to purchase fuel. In both situations, you’re applying leverage to acquire the goal you seek, which is to get the life-saving medication that you desperately need.

To be more productive with the use of leverage, look first to negotiate with those in need or crisis mode. They’ll be more apt to make quicker deals with less haggling. And, as always, to enhance your efforts, know what people really want, versus what they tell you, and from whom you can get it if you don’t possess it.


If you’re accustomed to not having money on you, change that! Because, if you have currency as opposed to credit or debit cards, you’ll be able to negotiate more effectively using cash. That means you’ll be able to close some deals faster on your terms. 


To improve your cash flow, consider who might agree to accept payments later, waive fees, etc. Be mindful that they will be the people to deal with first in the future. They will have shown that they’re willing to work with you in trying times. And, by working with such people, you’ll have more cash to address opportunities that will avail themselves in your present environment.

Herd Mentality:

During times of crisis, people suspend their rational thought processes. And that can lead them to adopt a herd mentality. The thought they engage in during such times is, there’s safety in numbers. Thus, if everyone else is doing it, it must be the right thing to do.

While following a herd can be a stress reliever, it can also be the bane of your future success. So, to protect yourself during times of trouble, observe what the heard is doing. But be vigilant of deviations to enhance your negotiation position. A variation might be having cash on hand to strengthen your negotiation efforts with someone that had limited funds.

Thus a deviation can be any form of goods, services, or money that you use differently than others to enhance your position. It needs to be something that others perceive as valuable and, therefore, the reason they’d want it. When you’re in that position, you’ll have more leverage and influence. And that will become your optimum time to negotiate because that’ll be your height of power as a negotiator.    


Stress can debilitate you in normal times. During times of crisis, it can be more devastating. And that’s the reason you have to control your perception of situations around you. Before you allow too many outside sources to determine your actions, check the validity of those sources.  And consider focusing more on the positive aspects occurring in your life.

Since you’re hardwired to address your most prominent thoughts, to improve your environment, you must use your thought process to improve how you’re viewing that environment. And that’s how, by managing your degree of stress, you can improve your negotiation efforts. If you’re mentally not burdened with worry, you’ll be able to think more clearly. And that’s what you should always strive to achieve as a negotiator – clear mind – clear thoughts.

Negotiation Timing:

During times of crisis, people become skittish about what they may need in the future. Thus, they hoard what they perceive to be necessities in the present time. So, in addition to what I’ve stated about supplies, leverage, herd mentality, and stress, consider the timing in which you make offers. The more cautious people become, the more flexible they’ll become when negotiating with you. That means, if you time your propositions when people are in a heightened state of flexibility, your negotiation efforts will be met with greater success, and with less effort on your part.  


If you want to prevent being swallowed by the current pandemic, and the financial woes that some will experience after the efforts of Covid-19 have eroded, you must become a better negotiator. And now is the time to do that.

Protect yourself by utilizing the insights mentioned in this article (i.e., having cash on hand, managing stress, being observant of the herd, etc.). As a negotiator, you will become positioned better to survive and thrive when the pandemic clears. And everything will be right with the world.

Remember, you’re always negotiating!

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