January 5, 2024

Seller's Viewpoint of The Bogey

Last month I illustrated how a buyer, or someone negotiating for resources, might utilize a Bogey. This month, I explore how a salesperson, or someone selling an idea or concept, can create their own Bogey — or respond to a Bogey used by a skilled buyer.

I hope you remember the discussions we had during our negotiation seminar about the "Bogey." I created this negotiating term after conducting my initial research into negotiating. I use this label to describe a simple negotiating skill that really works. All you have to do is try it a few times to prove this to yourself.

In the hands of a skilled buyer or a skilled seller, a Bogey can benefit both parties and can truly lead to a both-win negotiation.

The essence of a buyer's Bogey is "I love what your idea – or what you have to sell – but I only have so much money to spend – time available – resources available, etc. Please help me."

The seller's Bogey should be "I'd love to make this sale to you, but cannot unless we solve a few simple problems first."

• The minimum order is $10,000.

• For us to finish the order processing system in 3 months, we need full access to your technical staff.

• This system must be sold with the two-year service agreement.

• That price is only available by using our six month delivery program.

• We can meet your requirement, at your price, if you give us 100 percent of the project.

• This is our most common configuration. If you can change your specifications to fit it, you'll get the best performance.

• We can do it, but you will have to change the design like this to fit our production line.

• This project requires an advance payment of $10,000.

• We can make it to your specifications, but I have to charge you an additional $5,000 for new tools.

• Our standard fabric is grey—other colors require special production runs at a higher price, longer delivery cycles, and a larger minimum order. Do you need it in blue?

For the seller, Bogeys can help close a sale, increase an order, offer a better product, or zero in on the buyer's real budget or concerns.

What should a seller think and do when a buyer throws a Bogey out on the table?

• Test the Bogey. Most budgets are flexible. Projects can be modified.

• Have alternate designs, delivery, and price packages available before you come to the negotiation.

• If you are not prepared for the Bogey, ask for time to study the problem.

• Change the time shape of money. Not enough money now? They may have it later, they may prefer to stretch out the payments, or pay in the future. If there are no funds in the training budget—what about the consulting budget, or the general operating budget, or earmarking funds in next year's budget?

A salesperson who is prepared to handle a Bogey can turn it into an opportunity. You can provide the buyer with a product / service that meets their needs and provides a greater profit for the seller than before the Bogey. The path to better results for sellers lies in asking—before negotiations begin, "What will I do if the buyer throws a Bogey at me?" If the Bogey is handled right, you will close the sale while the competition is still floundering around.

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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