Career Negotiation, Negotiating Tips, Negotiating in Life June 29, 2009

Listen to me!

Norm Brodsky, an entrepreneur and business advice columnist, writes in the June 2009 issue of Inc. Magazine: “(The) key rule of negotiating for me: Never anticipate what the other side is thinking. Go into every negotiating situation with an open mind and listen to what the other party is saying.” Read the whole story of why Brodsky arrived at this conclusion. There is no doubt that active listening during a business negotiation is crucial for your success. After all, if you don’t understand where the other party stands or why, you won’t know how to proceed or what is expected of you. Sometimes we hear someone talking but we don’t listen to what they are saying. Our minds are not focused on what the other person is saying because we are too involved in our own thoughts. We are distracted or we ignore information we don’t like or disagree with. Real, active listening is a skill that we can and should master. It takes a conscientious effort to do so. Dr. Chester Karrass gives us a few tips that can help improve our listening:

  1. Provide the other party with your full attention. That means that you are not engaging in doing anything else—no fiddling with papers or looking at your text messages.
  2. Don’t interrupt the person speaking. Let him or her finish his or her thoughts before you jump in.
  3. Don’t tune out just because you don’t like what the person is saying.
  4. Repeat back what you have heard.

Dr. Karrass also advises that you should have an “official listener” on your team who takes detailed notes recording what is said, how it is said and in what order. Your negotiations will certainly improve if you work on your listening skills. Were you ever in situation in which you faltered because you did not listen to the other side? Please share in the comments.

THE PROGRAM WAS GREAT! MY SEMINAR LEADER AND THE STRUCTURE OF THE COURSE KEPT ME CONSTANTLY STIMULATED. I NOW AM BETTER PREPARED TO GO INTO AN IMPORTANT NEGOTIATION MEETING AND STAY IN CONTROL, WHILE FINISHING THE MEETING SATISFIED.

Deanna D.
CASE MANAGER at THE JACKSON LABORATORY

IF YOU HAVE THE TRAINING BUDGET AND TWO DAYS TO SPARE, YOU'LL STRUGGLE TO FIND A PROGRAM MORE FAR-REACHING, ON-POINT, AND INSTANTLY IMPLEMENTABLE.

Jeff G.
BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER at THE M.K. MORSE COMPANY

EXCELLENT COURSE, BRINGS MORE CONFIDENCE IN MY ABILITY TO NEGOTIATE. I THINK THIS COURSE IS A MUST FOR ALL EMPLOYEES WHO DEAL WITH CUSTOMERS.

John S.
CHIEF ENGINEERING MANAGER at EXXONMOBIL

THIS WAS VERY EFFECTIVE WITH A STRONG FOCUS ON BOTH-WIN NEGOTIATING.

Kathleen L.
SENIOR ANALYST at BLUE CROSS/BLUE SHIELD OF MICHIGAN

THE KARRASS CLASS WAS THE SINGLE BEST TRAINING CLASS/SEMINAR I HAVE EVER ATTENDED. EVERY TIME WE DID AN EXERCISE IT TAUGHT YOU WHAT TO DO DIFFERENTLY NEXT TIME. THANKS.

Kim C.
PROCUREMENT at AMERICAN EXPRESS

THIS PROGRAM HAS GREATLY INCREASED MY CONFIDENCE AND ABILITY TO NEGOTIATE FOR MYSELF AS WELL AS MY COMPANY.

LaDonna E.
SENIOR STRATEGIC BUYER at HALLMARK

THE NEGOTIATING CLASS WAS VERY INFORMATIVE. THE INSTRUCTOR PROVIDED AN INSPIRATIONAL MESSAGE THAT CAN BE APPLIED TO EVERYDAY LIFE.

Mary S.
INTERNATIONAL SOURCING at FMC TECHNOLOGIES

WE NEGOTIATE EVERY DAY OF OUR LIVES, BOTH PERSONALLY AND PROFESSIONALLY. THIS COURSE DEFINES THE PROCESS AND PROVIDES TECHNIQUES TO ACHIEVE SUCCESSFUL RESULTS.

Phillip H.
VICE PRESIDENT at GE

PRIOR TO THIS CLASS I FELT AS THOUGH I WAS GETTING EATEN ALIVE BY INTERNAL NEGOTIATIONS WITH SALES REPS. NOW I FEEL PREPARED TO CHALLENGE WHAT THEY ARE SAYING AND BET TO THEIR REAL NEEDS.

Steve Q.
PLANNER at HONEYWELL

MANY PEOPLE FAIL TO ACHIEVE THEIR POTENTIAL BECAUSE THEY DON’T SEE THE OPPORTUNITIES TO NEGOTIATE A WIN/WIN AGREEMENT WITH THEIR COLLEAGUES. THIS CLASS IS AN EYE OPENER TO THIS DYNAMIC..

Stuart B.
CONTRACTS MANAGER at HEWLETT-PACKARD
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