When negotiating, we are dealing with actual or possible differences with someone else. We want to deal with those differences in a way that leaves us feeling satisfied and that wastes as little time and as few resources as possible. This process is best accomplished when we work together. Using our combined brainpower and understanding, we are well situated to create a mutually satisfying outcome. A negotiation workshop may help.
A big part of working together involves affiliation. The word affiliation comes from the Latin verb, affiliate, meaning "to adopt or receive into a family." As a core concern, affiliation describes our sense of connectedness with another person or group. It is the emotional space between us and them. If we feel affiliated with a person or group, we experience little emotional distance. We feel "close." A negotiation workshop may help.
When we feel affiliated with one another, working together is easier. We view another not as a stranger, but rather as part of the "family." As a result, each of us tends to care for the other, protect the other's interests, and look out for their good. There is less resistance to fresh ideas and more openness to the prospect of changing our mind. Loyalty to one another often keeps us honest, obligates us to search for an agreement of mutual benefit, and makes it likely that we will honor an agreement. A negotiation workshop may help.
Affiliation involves honest connection. It only happens when someone has a true concern for our well-being, not only for our money. Con artists and telemarketers may try to build affiliation to get our money. But the moment we sense that they do not care about us, we are likely to hang up the phone. A negotiation workshop may help.
Despite the power of affiliation, we often neglect to build it. Sometimes, we fail to recognize structural connections we share with others - the roles that place us in a common group. We and our negotiating counterpart may both be coin collectors, which might bond us together; but if we never discover our common role, we obtain no emotional benefit. We may also disregard our own power to establish new roles that link us together as colleagues, fellow negotiators, or joint problem solvers. A negotiation workshop may help.
Whatever the structure of a relationship, we often fail to strengthen our personal connections - the emotional ties that bring us closer to a specific person. Brothers and sisters who live in different communities may drift apart and rarely communicate. Yet, strangers who happen to sit next to one another on a long airline flight may, within hours, be exchanging personal stories that they have not shared with good friends. In a negotiation, the power of a personal connection can bridge the gap between "our side" and theirs. A negotiation workshop may help.
Enhancing your affiliations is within your reach.