One of the key indicators of long-term success is the way a business engages with its external and internal stakeholders. Winning a new major client, making a strategic acquisition, managing teams for performance, or spending less while managing risk: negotiation is everywhere.
A 2012 study estimated that UK private-sector businesses lose around £17 billion every year as a result of poor negotiation practices. For the average company, that equated to a 7-per-cent loss of profits. There is no reason to suspect that the findings would have been much different in Australia.
“In business and in life, you don’t get what you deserve; you get what you negotiate.” Chester L. Karrass
Negotiation happens at all levels of business, from the big set-piece negotiation with clients and suppliers to the daily negotiations between business units, managers and staff, and contractors. How much value would be added to businesses if all of those negotiations were just 5 per cent more efficient: fewer escalations of conflicts to senior staff, more value secured from suppliers, clients retained through effective grievance handling, improved margins on sales, and improved internal communication.
Overcoming Common Challenges
Negotiation is rarely taught as part of our education and almost never with the chance to practise and learn from your mistakes. As a consequence there are several key challenges that need to overcome in order to be successful negotiators and build effective negotiating teams:
- Understand negotiation – Negotiation is not something that just happens. There is an underlying process to every negotiation—business and private. Negotiation is creating additional value by skilful trading, securing agreement on issues that are of higher value in return for yielding on issues that are lower cost or lower value. Trading is about realising opportunities and building relationships, but requires flexibility, discipline, and giving as well as taking.
- Don’t settle for win–win – The concept is worthy, but aiming for a ‘win–win deal’ makes for a poor negotiation objective. This is because win–win says nothing about the overall quality of the deal. Skilled negotiators aim beyond win–win to create additional value from the relationship for both sides.
- Avoid compromises – Haggling over an issue and compromising to meet somewhere ‘in the middle’ may resolve the issue, but typically leaves both sides unhappy. Another downside of repeated compromise is the precedent it sets. If one side is prone to compromise, sharp negotiators will happily invite them to ‘meet halfway’ again and again, and across wider and wider ranges.
- Give your team a clear mandate – How often do negotiations get bogged down because one or both sides are unclear about where they can be flexible and how far they can go? The result is a costly standstill because neither side is empowered to actually do a better deal. Without a clear mandate, negotiators won’t know what they can trade to turn an acceptable deal into a great deal.
- Demand excellence – The alchemy of negotiation lies in trading what is low cost or low value in exchange for elements of higher value. That’s easy to write but much harder to deliver across a tense negotiation table. Demand negotiating excellence, discipline, and accountability for results—from your team as well as from yourself.
Getting Results – Introducing Negotiation Partners
Negotiation Partners’ passion is to help executives and businesses raise their game. In 2016, over 98% of their alumni delivered substantial business outcomes within three months and reported long-term improvement in their negotiation skill (more than 300% ROI). In 2016, 29% of their alumni had already earned-back their training investment within 10 days after the course. Some even reporting gains of up to several $100,000 extra value in their deals whilst simultaneously improving their supplier relationships, rather than just squeezing them and generating bad will (their pre-course approach).
Their clients entrust us to help them with vital negotiations, to resolve conflict and to deliver results. The practice-focused training programs developed are unique: they combine intensive coaching by professional negotiators with insightful proprietary diagnostics and long-term coaching follow-up. They are confident that their negotiation programs are their best sales tool.
A Program You Should Consider
“I am excited enough about the value of their programs that I’m going to attend as a participant myself.”
– Phillip Ralph
So Negotiation Partners want to invite you to a special “try before you buy” offer on their public two day + 3 hours online course offering.
The unique guarantee…
While their programs aren’t cheap, to their clients they are effectively free. As professionals, Negotiation Partners believe that your training investment should generate a solid and tangible return on investment. That’s why their 2½-day and 3-day corporate programs include a 300% Return On Investment Guarantee.
If your team does not report at least 3 times our fee in added value within 3 months, they will happily refund up to 100% of the program fee. Their corporate clients enjoy this guarantee as part of their standard commercial terms.
So far, they have never been asked to honour our guarantee.
How can a standard two or three-day training program deliver such an impact? It can’t.
That’s why their programs are not standard programs. They start weeks before the face-to-face training and continue for three months or more after the core content has been delivered.
“Price is what you pay, Value is what you get.”
– Warren Buffet
A typical program includes:
- Pre-meeting(s) with the course sponsor(s) to identify business objectives, individual training needs, and any other factors relevant to the performance of participants;
- Pre-course needs analysis and NCRS™ negotiation diagnostic for each participant;
- Appropriate course tailoring to ensure maximum focus on key development areas;
- Three-day intensive program (about 27 working hours) for six to twelve participants, delivered by two experienced negotiation professionals (no ‘trainers’ or academics!);
- Individual skills report with the coaches’ feedback and recommendations for each participant.
- Post-course surveys after 10 days and 90 days to evaluate impact and effectiveness.
- Regular follow-up contact with skill tips and tailored advice.
- Coaching follow-up and unlimited access to our 1300 negotiation ‘helpline’ for ad-hoc feedback and coaching on any negotiation, business transaction or conflict setting (business or private); and
- Detailed sponsor’s reporting, including formal three-month post-course ROI report.
Get in touch to find out more: [email protected]
There is no disclaimer.
I am not receiving any financial or other incentive to promote this program. I just believe it is an awesome program which will benefit just about any manager or leader, which is why I’m attending! I hope to see you there (Melbourne).