Negotiation tactics: Build your credibility
One of the most important items you bring to the table during a negotiation is your credibility. After all, if the other party doesn’t believe or trust you because you aren’t credible, then it is likely the negotiation won’t go very well at all. We always prefer dealing with people we believe or whom we trust. Your credibility backs you up.
In a negotiation, credibility is key. In the bestselling book, In Business As In Life – You Don’t Get What You Deserve, You Get What You Negotiate, Dr. Chester L. Karrass writes that “It makes good sense to bring to the attention of one’s opponent the past experience, accomplishments and special qualifications of team members.” Why? Because expertise in your field automatically adds credibility to your position. Other qualifiers such as your title and educational achievement boost your perceived credibility.
Thus, to increase your credibility, you should strive to be as knowledgeable as possible about your products or services, and any issues that may affect them.
Truthfulness is also a factor in a negotiation. Your arguments could require substantiation. In order to build credibility, it is a good policy to provide facts and figures that can be checked. If something is not provable, or the numbers don’t add up, you open up a gap in your credibility.
You control your perceived credibility: By appearing professional and by providing reliable information, you can make sure others see you as credible. The more credible you are, the stronger your negotiating position will be.