Respect is an often overlooked intrinsic value that contributes to winning more negotiations. The following insights, per how to display respect in a negotiation will give you a few more tools to add to your negotiation repertoire. By implementing them in your negotiations, you’ll win more negotiations.
When possible, don’t attempt to talk over the opposing negotiator. When one person talks over the other, the person initiating the act is saying, what I have to say is more important than what you’re saying. Thus, what you’re saying is not important to me. Even if that’s not the intent of the person initiating the action, the meaning nonverbally can leave the other person feeling intuitively dismissed. In experiencing such a feeling he may become dogmatic at getting his point across, which could lead to a more contemptuous negotiation. To prevent such from occurring, you and the other negotiator can agree at the outset of the negotiation how much time each will have to make a point without being interrupted. That will set the groundwork for a more respectful exchange of information.
One of the easiest ways to influence someone is to let them know you understand their plight and that you’re empathetic to it. When people sense that you truly understand and appreciate their perspective they tend to be open to your suggestions, thoughts, and insights. Thus, when negotiating, you should always seek to display empathy (e.g. While discussing a point in which the opposing negotiator feels disrespected, you might say in a slow pace of speech, “I understand how that must have made you feel. I will be respectful of you and the offers/counteroffers you put forth. I will not take advantage of you.”) If this is done at the outset of the negotiation and you follow through with your pronouncement at every opportunity you have during the negotiation, the other negotiator will trust you, be willing to follow your lead (to a point), and feel less apprehensive about concealing herself. That should make the negotiation easier.
Display listening and understanding through your body language:
Have you ever sensed that someone halfheartedly listened to you and then it was confirmed when you posed a question that they couldn’t respond to? How did that make you feel like you were wasting your time, they didn’t respect you enough to give you their undivided attention? To give someone your undivided attention subliminally states that you think what they’re saying is important enough to warrant your attention. Thus, you send a nonverbal message that the person is important. To project such an impression during the negotiation, convey that you’re listening by nodding at the appropriate times and displaying verbal communication (i.e. yeah, aha, etc.) You can also use hand gesture (i.e. finger to temple (I’m contemplating what you’re saying)) to also signal that you’re attuned to what’s being said.
Being respectful and displaying it in a negotiation should not be an earthmoving effort. Thus, you should seek to be respectful whenever and with whomever you negotiate. To the degree the other negotiator feels you respect him, he’ll tend to display more respect for you. In so doing, both of you will display respect for each other which should transfer into a more respectful and easier negotiation … and everything will be right with the world.
Remember, you’re always negotiating!