January 8, 2024

CONCESSION STRATEGY

Throughout the course of the negotiation process you are bound to grant the other party concessions. When you grant a concession, the response you get can be impacted by the concession you just gave. For example, if you make a large concession, instead of being satisfied, the other party often reacts by making greater demands. They think, “Wow, if I just got that much, there is a lot more to be had.”

Consider giving small concessions to get what you want. Most of us want to be fair. If I make four concessions to you, you will feel obligated to make at least one to me. The central question in negotiation is not whether I made four and you made one, but whether your one was more valuable than my four. Many a negotiator has done well by making a series of minor concessions and then saying, “Now, what are you going to do for me?” That’s the one point that really matters.

In negotiations, everything we do or say affects, and is in turn affected by, what the other party does or says. It’s like a chain reaction!

Where does all this lead us? You have to think through the effect each of your concessions will have on the other person. Ask yourself,

  • “If I make this concession, how are they likely to react?”
  • “What should I do next?”
  • “If I make this concession, is there anything I can ask for in return?”
  • “How is this concession going to bring us closer to agreement?”
  • “Is there anything I can give that they will highly value, but really costs me little?”

Little questions like these help me see my concession from the other person’s viewpoint. This helps me develop my concession strategy.

Let’s Split the Difference.

Splitting the difference is a quick way to reach agreement. But be careful, it can seduce you. After all, people are used to giving and getting equal shares at home, at restaurants, and at birthday parties. Splitting in the middle is simple. Not splitting in the middle is full of problems. It brings up a tough question: “If not in the middle, where else?”

The question “Where else?” is interesting. Things that are equal are not necessarily equitable. Splitting the difference is equal. It may be a fast way to reach an agreement. But it may not be equitable, or fair.

I know a buyer who does well using the split approach. He makes a very low starting offer, raises it only slightly, and then says, “Okay, let’s split the difference.” The buyer knows that it’s hard for a salesperson to say no to such a reasonable request. The salesperson who gets sucked into the split finds he or she is giving too much away.

The next time somebody says, “Let’s split the difference,” try saying, “No, I can’t. And here’s why.” Then provide a good explanation as to what is equitable. You will be surprised at how often you get more than half.

Your concession making should provide satisfaction to the other party and lead you to an agreement. However, some concessions have the potential of doing just the opposite. Take some time before your negotiation to plan a concession strategy. It really helps!

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