The Power of Negative Planning or How to Stop Hoping for the Best-Part Two
As we all know, plans have a way no not working out. I have seen people so disconcerted by a failed approach that they say or do something that actually raises the expectations of the other party...
First, before talks start, test your line of reasoning and your arguments through a “Devil’s Advocate” defense. If it’s a personal negotiation, the so-called “Devil’s Advocate” can be your friend or spouse, or it can be an associate if it is a business transaction. The important thing is to have someone in your organization take the role of the opposer.
The job of the Devil’s Advocate is to frustrate your plans by doing two things. First, by forcing you to support your own position and second, by making you defend against the other side’s difficult arguments-arguments that they are sure to raise in the course of the later give and take.
Researchers call this the double defense: supporting your own arguments and rebutting those the opposer will bring up. Experiments in psychology have shown this to be the strongest defense preparation you can bring to the table.
My second suggestion also applies to any negotiation, be it personal or business. Learn to give yourself time to think by using frequent caucuses or time outs. This will permit a continuous review of the bargaining situation. As new developments come to light, you will be in a better position to make a revised plan and to adjust your strategy.
The process of negotiation is one of discovery. Strengths and weaknesses not anticipated beforehand will come to light. The regular use of a Devil’s Advocate approach, combined with frequent time outs and better advanced planning, is the best way to anticipate the unanticipated.
Success in negotiation starts with understanding what kind of negotiation you are dealing with. Fundamentally, every negotiation is fundamentally about finding and distributing value...Read More
Happy Holidays to you and yours! Chances are very good that you had to negotiate with at least a few people to figure out what your holiday plans would be this holiday season, and chances are good that it didn’t all go perfectly smoothly. If you are all still on speaking terms, that’s probably because you utilized some of your best conflict resolution tools...Read More