Guy Kawasaki, formerly the “chief evangelist” at Apple Computer, has written a book entitled Enchantment: The Art of Changing Hearts, Minds and Actions.  The premise is that by delighting or enchanting people, they will see your way of seeing things and/or come over to your side (buy your product or service, give to your cause, etc.). It makes sense that being enchanting would help in business negotiation. If you change the other party’s mind or actions, you may reach an agreement more quickly and easily.

To be enchanting, Kawasaki suggests the following:

  • Be likeable (smile, dress appropriately for your audience, etc.)
  • Be trustworthy
  • Have quality products or services
  • Overcome resistance

Kawasaki’s chapter “How to Overcome Resistance” provides good advice for negotiators. He starts by explaining that people may be reluctant to support your cause for various reasons including inertia and the fear of making a mistake. However, you can overcome resistance.

In Enchantment, Kawasaki suggests that to overcome resistance you have to take several steps (depending on the cause of resistance):

  • Provide proof that other people are supporting your cause
  • Find something that is working and point that out (don’t dwell on what is not working)
  • Find agreement or common ground

In the end, people want to do business with people they like. Spending some time thinking about your likeability or your ability to enchant is probably worthwhile.  There are many tests that you can take to assess your likeability. Here is a link to “Think you are likeable? Take the test to know for sure.”

Have you found that likeability helps get the deal done? Have you found the opposite, that it is hard to negotiate with an unlikeable person? Please share in the comments.

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