General Negotiation October 5, 2012

You Need Time To Think

If you are going to make the most of the skills you learned at my Effective Negotiating seminar, and maximize your opportunities to craft truly creative, both-win agreements, build some thinking time into your negotiations. Never go into a negotiation without first considering how to give yourself time to think. Build a thinking buffer to keep yourself from being pushed into a decision. Many American business people conduct negotiations like a Ping-Pong tournament. Buyer and seller, engineer and consultant, two division managers -- all are in a big hurry. A few quick slashes and returns, and it’s over. Other cultures, like Europeans and Asians, take a different approach. They are not so hasty. They recognized the obvious: The person who has time to think, thinks better! Look at the diplomatic world. Diplomats conduct negotiations with short sessions and long recesses. A question raised one week may not be answered until weeks later. Demands and offers are usually made in writing to give both parties time to respond in a sensible way. Quick deals are rare. The suggestions that follow are effective. They work.

  1. Get the other party to present their position before breaking for the day.
  2. Arrange to get an important surprise visitor or phone call at some crucial point.
  3. Take a restroom break.
  4. Get thirsty or hungry.
  5. Change a member of the negotiating team.
  6. Don’t have the back-up evidence available.
  7. Plead ignorance. Ask for time to learn more about it.
  8. Have your expert unavailable.
  9. Load down the other party with documents, data, or drawings.
  10. Use an interpreter or third party. Interpreters can be technical people, lawyers, your boss, or translators. In any case, they can slow things down.
  11. If you are on a team, develop rules among your people on how questions will be fielded. Sometimes it is best to have all questions directed only to one person, to give others time to think about the answers.
  12. Recess and caucus frequently.

It is remarkable what we humans see in hindsight. Giving yourself time to think changes hindsight to foresight and it will make you a better negotiator.

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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