One of the trickiest parts of business negotiations is being able to secure all of your desired outcomes. Even the most experienced negotiators find themselves having to settle for a second draft of a contract after being talked out of their preferred terms. In the worst case, some negotiations will simply fall through, and you're forced to walk out empty-handed. Luckily, no matter what type of negotiation you're facing, just a little planning and strategy can greatly increase your chances of walking out with a successful deal completed on your own terms.
Preparing for Success
The most crucial step of preparing for a successful negotiation is to plan out what the ideal result would look like. Making a list of all your desired outcomes will also give you a sense of direction when assembling a team.
Drafting a Contract
It's imperative that you clearly state your intentions by drafting a contract before negotiations begin, as having your own terms clearly visible from the start will limit the number of concessions you're willing to make to the other party.
Additionally, it's important to make sure the contract is presented in a clean, organized, and concise manner. When detailing your own terms to the counterparty, a well-presented contract will garner a more favorable impression than if you present an incomplete and messy draft. To keep your contracts visually appealing, reduce PDF file size to have an easily shareable document.
Considering All Outcomes
When walking into a negotiation, you must always remember that things might not work out in your favor. By preparing for unwanted outcomes beforehand, you allow yourself to more easily accept potential failures and rebound faster. This kind of thinking fosters the self-evaluation skills that enable you to change your strategy and show up better prepared for future negotiations.
Assembling a Team
Picking the right people for the job can dramatically increase your chances of achieving desired outcomes. Assign different roles to colleagues based on their strengths, as this will help in managing team members and keep the team running efficiently. Every situation is different, but some crucial responsibilities for a negotiation team include:
Team leader. There should always be one person who can take the reins in leading the negotiation according to the interests of the company.
Contract analyst. Having an expert in contract law can make understanding the counterparty's terms much easier and allows you greater flexibility in defining your own terms.
Stakeholders. Including somebody who is directly linked to constituents can help ensure negotiations are proceeding along the correct path and give you leverage by having a potential deal-blocker on your side.
Stick to the Plan
With careful preparation and a clearly defined end goal, achieving your desired outcomes in negotiations becomes a very straightforward process. Set out to understand the negotiable items under consideration, your leverage, and the ideal outcome, and your negotiations will more likely succeed.
Furthermore, you can increase your credibility by joining a chamber of commerce — consider joining your local chamber today.