We all negotiate every day. But what is negotiation? You can think of negotiation seminars in many ways, such as:
These are all fairly traditional definitions. A couple of others that I like are:
This last one is the definition I like best of all. Like any game, negotiation seminars should be fun. There are some rules, though there are a lot more guidelines than firm rules. There are negotiation seminars strategies and tactics you can learn, as well as counter-tactics for every tactic.
Negotiation is partly a game of luck. However, as the old saying goes, luck is what happens when negotiation seminars preparation meets opportunity. Thus, you can shape your luck. Most experts agree that negotiation seminars are the single most important determinant of negotiating success. And yet so many wannabe negotiators choose to wing it!
Negotiation is also a game of skill. In fact, the more negotiation seminars skill you develop, the less you are at the mercy of chance.
Some people who attend negotiation seminars hope to learn the secret to being a master negotiator. Unfortunately, there is no secret. There is only a body of guidelines, principles, strategies, tactics, and skills to learn and practice. There is also psychology and an understanding of human behavior. And, of course, there are negotiation seminars communication and interpersonal skills. None of these is a magic bullet. You must practice and improve in all of these areas.
As you become more adept your negotiated outcomes will improve. Sometimes you will find that one masterstroke makes a huge difference. More often, you will use a combination of negotiation seminars skills to make incremental improvements in your negotiating ability. For example, many of my negotiation seminars students are amazed to find that simply by learning one simple technique - such as making a more aggressive first offer or counteroffer than they normally would - they can achieve greater outcomes in all of their negotiations.
You can study negotiation seminars for the rest of your life. On the plus side, you can also reap the benefits of these improved outcomes for the rest of your life. Given that you negotiate every day, this can add up to a fantastic sum. So play the game and have fun!
Negotiation is also a process. The process begins the moment you perceive a need you cannot satisfy on your own. As you will need help from someone else, you must get him to agree. You may not even have identified who this person is yet. At this point your negotiation seminars have begun, whether you realize it or not - you are in the critical preparation stage of the negotiation. How do you prepare? Here's a partial checklist.
The Chinese military strategist Sun Tzu wrote: "If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles." In other words, preparation is the key to victory in battle. The same can be said of negotiation.
Perhaps there is a secret after all - Preparation. Most people do not prepare much for a negotiation, and many do not prepare at all. Do you see an opportunity here?