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Negotiate Like a Pro With the Tips Below

Published on Mar 20, 2013


Read 'Negotiate Like a Pro With the Tips Below' at 'Time to Start Up,' the small business blog by BizFilings.
By Adam Toren Effective negotiation sometimes seems like a lost art. Whether you are negotiating a new hire’s salary or building a new partnership, you need to carefully compose rhetoric, understand the subtleties of compromise and put business affairs ahead of personal disputes. Though it’s not easy, becoming a master negotiator will take you very far in both the business world, and your personal life.


You want to analyze the upcoming negotiation like a professional football coach. Study the desires and capabilities of the person(s) you’ll be negotiating with until you understand their situation to the best of your abilities. Anticipate their suggestions and reactions, and have a game plan going in. By doing your homework, you’ll have an arsenal of tactics at your disposal that are applicable to the potential circumstances that arise.

Probing, Patience and Paying Attention

Some people approach negotiation with the idea that they need to dominate the conversation at all costs. They attempt to gain positions of power by leading the direction of the discussion to the avenues that they desire. Though maintaining a sense of control is important in negotiation, a better alternative is to gain this control through patience and asking questions. Let the other person reveal their pressures and interests. Ask probing, open-ended questions like a detective trying to crack a case. When you do speak, make your words count.

Challenge Respectfully

You have to be assertive enough to ask for what you want. Exert a strong frame when you enter the negotiation and don’t waver from your resolute position. Be confident and emphatic, but don’t be a jerk. If you approach negotiating with an overly aggressive, dominant attitude, you’ll alienate the other side. They may simply jump ship due to your tone without even considering what lies beneath your antagonistic exterior. Challenge all assumptions, but do so respectfully, and without capitulating to personal feelings such as anger or nervousness. At the same time, never let the personality or negative attitude of the other side affect your strategy or considerations. Don’t take things personally; put business needs before any personal issues.

Give and Take

Never offer a concession without getting something in return. This is, after all, a negotiation. If you start to give things away without compensation, the other side will view you as vulnerable and pounce, gaining an advantage in the negotiation that will be difficult to overcome. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make enticing offers. On the contrary; use your excellent research and listening skills to come up with alluring propositions. Understand the basic interests and demands of the other side and let them know their needs will be met – but  only if you get what you want in return.

The Ultimate Power Move

You must be willing to walk away. Whatever the situation, even if you’re coming into the negotiation from a position of less power, you must be willing to walk away. The ability to exit the negotiation will give you all the power you need. Always have other options, and never approach a negotiation from a place of desperation. Adam Toren is an Award Winning Author, Serial Entrepreneur and Investor. He Co-Founded YoungEntrepreneur.com along with his brother Matthew. Adam is co-author of the newly released book: Small Business, Big Vision: “Lessons on How to Dominate Your Market from Self-Made Entrepreneurs Who Did it Right” and also co-author of Kidpreneurs.