Negotiation Tip – Prepare In Advance for Success in Negotiation

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NEGOTIATION TIP: Prepare in advance.

The time to prepare for any negotiation is not when you are sitting down at the table or facing it in the moment. You must prepare in advance. Preparing in advance means thinking about the negotiation ahead of time. What will the circumstances be? What questions might get asked? What thoughts or feeling might the negotiation bring up?

If you are going to do a sit down style negotiation or on the phone or skype, I recommend doing a mock negotiation with someone so you have the advantage of already having “felt” it in your body. This is true for business negotiations and especially job interviews or promotion interviews. If you go into the interview having training your skills in advance, you will feel more confident in the moment then if you just walked in, sat down and did it for the first time.

We often hear about the best discussion or interview being the best after the fact. It happens all the time, after the discussion you think of all the things you should have or could have said. Doing it once or twice before you go into it for real will help with this. As a speaker I often run my content in front of my Toastmasters club to get the feel of presenting it in front of an audience for the first time before I actually have to do it to a bigger audience for real. Every time I’ve done this, it has turned out so much better because I did it first to get the feel of it in front of real people. Doing it in my living room with my cats as the audience isn’t the same as living breathing people.

I always say negotiation is for personal life as well. I have 2 big negotiations coming this year, both my kids leaving California to do things in their lives. I know I can’t prepare for how the emotions will come over that but it is something I am aware of now and thinking about how I will surround myself with a support system to help me through that when it happens. Tearing up just writing about it so I know it will be bittersweet. So proud of them. Ignoring it will not make it go away so I have to put things in place to handle it in advance. If I wait until the time comes and attempt to ignore it that may leave a flood of emotions with no plan of how to make sure I support myself through it.

If you think about other people preparing in advance, you can probably be confident that most people won’t go to that level to prepare for things and that you will have the advantage in the long run and stand out from the herd which is what you would want in many situations.

Eldonna Lewis Fernandez
Eldonna Lewis Fernandez

Veteran negotiation and contracts expert Eldonna Lewis-Fernandez, author of “Think Like a Negotiator,” has over 30 years of experience crafting killer deals both stateside and internationally, many in excess of $100 million. She’s currently the CEO of Dynamic Vision International — a specialized consulting and training firm that helps individuals hone negotiation skills — as well as a nationally regarded keynote speaker, session leader and panelist on the Art of Negotiation. Eldonna may be reached online at www.EldonnaLewisFernandez.com

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