Negotiation is basically an exchange between two parties to agree on a course of action which may simply be a price or may include terms and conditions. You negotiate on a regular basis whether you realize it or not. Many people are fearful of negotiation and think they are not capable of doing it. There are companies that teach high-level negotiation strategies and there are professional negotiators.
You don’t have to be a professional negotiator to be good at it. You can improve your negotiation skills with just a little bit of adjustment to your mindset as well as realizing the places that you already negotiate and training to improve your skills.
The following tips are some basics that will bump up your negotiation skills:
1. You already successfully negotiate
Have you ever received a bill and noticed a bogus charge on it? You had to call the company to have it removed. Or perhaps you called a credit card company and asked to reduce your interest rate? Did you maybe ask your boss to adjust your hours on a particular day so you could go to an appointment? Have you ever gone to a yard sale or swap meet and asked to pay a lower price? Or maybe you didn’t get good service at a restaurant and mentioned it to the manager and the bill was lowered because of it.
These are all examples of negotiation and when you think about it you probably have negotiated much more than you give yourself credit for. Consider all these types of things over your lifetime.
2. Take what you already know and make it better
Now that you realize you already have some negotiation experience, train your skills to improve. You don’t have to be negotiating a big deal for a large corporation in order to get better. Go to a yard sale or swap meet and offer a lower price or see if you can get a discount if you buy more than one. You might not get something every time you ask but if you don’t ask you won’t get. These kinds of environments are a safe space to test out your skills. Not comfortable with doing it just yet? Take someone with you that is and watch them in action. Sometimes seeing someone else do it makes it easier for you to accomplish. You have to take action to improve your skills so sitting on the sidelines wishing it were better isn’t going to work. Train your skills and watch your confidence increase.
3. Think Like a Negotiator
What does it mean to think like a negotiator? What is means is basically that in any situation think about how you can get a better deal for yourself. If you are purchasing a service and you receive a quote, evaluate whether or not that price is fair and reasonable. Get more than one quote to compare prices. Speak up when you feel like you are being ripped off. Don’t sign any agreement until you read the fine print. Make sure you get things in writing. These are just a few things to consider when you are making any kind of purchase or deal. Many times a price is offered with the expectation that there may be some negotiating involved. Take the time to do research and think about what outcome you want from any purchase you are making whether it be for you personally or your business.
Negotiation is a state of mind and just like anything else, the way to get better at it is to train your skills. You have to take the action to improve your skills. Start hitting the yard sales and swap meets today and negotiate your way to win win results.
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