Negotiating in Life, Negotiating Tips June 8, 2007

Negotiating Understandings and Agreements

An Understanding is an expression of mutual viewpoint and attitude on an issue. An Agreement is a conclusive commitment to mutually acceptable terms. And a Procedure is a way of doing something.

You're probably wondering what this has to do with negotiating. What difference does it make? After all, isn't a deal a deal?

When you're negotiating it's not enough to simply reach agreement. Even when two parties have the best intentions, Agreements break down for a variety of reasons. Breakdowns occur because those responsible for implementing the Agreement often do not understand the common viewpoints, attitudes, and backgrounds that brought about the Agreement. Sometimes the breakdown occurs because neither party knows how to make the Agreement work or how to prove what is, or is not working.

A good Agreement should not only spell out the work and money involved, but should also discuss the understanding behind the Agreement and a Procedure for measuring cost in the event that additions or deletions of work occur. A poor Agreement simply leaves the parties bickering about whether verbal understandings are being met and whether costs are being accumulated fairly.

The next time you are in a negotiation, better say to yourself, "It is not enough just to reach agreement on terms. Are there any understandings and procedures that ought to be documented in detail right now, while they are fresh in our minds?"

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

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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

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SENIOR ANALYST at BLUE CROSS/BLUE SHIELD OF MICHIGAN

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Kim C.
PROCUREMENT at AMERICAN EXPRESS

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

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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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