Posts Tagged "negotiation"

The Personality Traits of Good Negotiators

Posted on August 9th, 2017 by The Learning Factor

Although there are hundreds of books about how to negotiate more effectively, the advice they offer is often difficult to apply, for three reasons. First, there are just too many contextual specificities underpinning each negotiation, such that one size does not fit all. Second, the effectiveness of each strategy is partly dependent on the personal background of the negotiators — who they are, what they want, and how they connect. Third, many of the factors determining the outcome of negotiations are more emotional than rational, which requires a deep psychological understanding of the people involved.


Luckily, personality research provides valuable lessons in predicting an individual’s ability to negotiate effectively. Some traits are clearly indicative of good negotiation potential, while others are more of a handicap. That isn’t to say people can’t get better at it, but their success will depend on their ability to understand their own and the other party’s personality.

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Emotional intelligence tops the list.

Always Settling In Negotiations? This Strategy’s For You

Posted on September 9th, 2016 by The Learning Factor

There’s a huge emotional component that each of us brings to negotiations, whether we realize it or not. And the ability to recognize those feelings and manage (not repress) them is as critical to your success as being able to calculate costs and nail deadlines. When you lack that self-knowledge, you risk selling yourself short or caving too easily in high-stakes discussions.


Instead of really calculating a rate that lets us profit from our work, we often agree to the amount we think will get the contract signed and meet our immediate financial needs.


In every instance, we succumb to an unacknowledged panic—an emotional reason to accept less, not a rational one. Beating that impulse means mastering our feelings.



How can you protect yourself from your own worst impulses? Two hours before your meeting, do this exercise:

  1. At the top of a page, write down the price you require in order to profitfrom your work—not just break even.
  2. At the bottom of the page, draw a firm line.
  3. Back at the top, below your profit price, list all the possible objections you can think of. (There’s usually a multitude, and while I haven’t heard all of them through my career, I’ve heard some doozies.) Your task now is to list every single one you can imagine, including anything as ridiculous as the one I got years ago: “My brother-in-law will do it for a case of beer.”
  4. Then list how you’re going to respond to every single one of those objections. And, yes, you can write, “Sounds like your brother-in-law is an alcoholic!”—though, of course, you’ll never say it.
  5. Finally, on the bottom line, write your price again. Because your price is the bottom line.

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If you’re afraid of caving, this strategy can prepare you to stay firm before you sit down at the negotiating table.

4 Easy Ways to Improve Customer Communication

Posted on July 6th, 2016 by The Learning Factor

Imagine trying to communicate with customers that speak 11 different languages and come from dozens of different cultures. How would you help them understand how to manage their debt when they never had credit before? On a recent episode of mypodcast, YPO’s 10 Minute Tips From the Top, I interviewed Ian Wason, CEO ofIntelligent Debt Management (IDM), on how he solved these exact problems.


Wason, a member of Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO), related how his company is able to help clients in South Africa overcome their debt issues with a 90 percent success rate, which is substantially higher than his competitors. The key for him is strong and creative communication. Here are his tips for communicating effectively with your customers.


1. Identify their pain.


Successful communication with a customer starts with understanding. By identifying their needs, you are more likely to dev2elop an appropriate solution. Moreover, by showing them empathetically that you understand their pain, they will also see that you care and will be more willing to work with you.

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The communicator has to take responsibility for effective communication. Here are a few tips that should help.

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