Negotiation Strategies September 17, 2009

Making Concessions

In most negotiations, both sides move from their original positions. It is wise to leave yourself 'negotiating space' when you make your initial offer.

Each side to a negotiation usually compromises by making some concessions to reach agreement. Careful concessions help guide you through this process towards a mutually satisfying agreement. Below we list some tips on things to keep in mind when making concessions.

Don't Give Free Concessions

Never give a concession without obtaining one in return. Don't give concessions away free or without serious discussion. A concession granted too easily does not contribute to the other party's satisfaction nearly as much as one that they struggle to obtain.

Craft Your Concession Wisely

Concessions that are poorly made can serve to further separate the parties rather than bring them together. A concession may serve to raise the aspiration level of the other party if it is interpreted as a signal of your weakness. Don't be too quick to give a concession, and don't 'shoot from the hip' -- think through the potential impact of any concession you give. How a concession is made is as important as the value of the concession.

Keep Count

Never lose track of how many concessions you have made, regardless of their value. The overall number is important and can provide bargaining leverage. Keep a written record of your concessions.

Stay Flexible

Flexibility is like money in a checking account. Do not use up your "bank account of flexibility." Every concession should bring you closer to some goal. If you use up all of your potential concessions your bank account is down to zero and deadlock is harder to avoid. Always look for a concession that the other side will value more than what it really costs you.

Build In a Way to Retreat

Don't feel constrained to stick with a concession on a specific issue. The whole agreement is more important than individual issues. Indicate to the other side that all concessions you give are tentative and based on a satisfactory overall agreement (i.e. "tie a string"). Some people tend to stick to interim concessions when they should not. They fear that their integrity may be questioned if they retreat from concessions they have made. Such rigidity can be costly.

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
Contact US
[email protected][email protected]+1 323 866-3800
SEMINARS
About Us
AboutDR. CHESTER KARRASSGARY KARRASSFAQGLOSSARYPRIVACY POLICYBLOG
QUICK LINKS