We spend a lot of time here at Negotiation Space talking about what you should say during a business negotiation and when you should say it. Perhaps we should also discuss what you should not say.

Don’t let emotions get the best of you!

Your first rule is to avoid saying anything when your emotions are getting the best of you. With any strong emotion—anger, sadness, even happiness—people tend to become less rational. Some people even lose touch with reality or the situation at hand. During a business negotiation, take a time out if you get emotional so that you can avoid saying anything “in the heat of the moment.”

Don’t make strong assertions if you aren’t sure

Dr. Chester L. Karrass also advises that you avoid making strong assertions, unless you are 110% sure of you are stating. If you have any doubt, he suggests saying “I reckon” instead.

5 Statements to Avoid

Inc. Magazine has suggestions for “5 Things You Should Never Say While Negotiating.” Author Mike Hofman writes that you should never say the following:

  • The word “between” (or throw out a range)
  • “I think we’re close.”
  • “Why don’t you throw out a number.”
  • “I’m the final decision-maker.”
  • Obscenities.

What have you learned is best never to say while negotiating? Share with us in the comments.

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