Negotiation-picking your Battles Wisely

Negotiation-picking your Battles Wisely

Negotiation-picking your Battles Wisely 
Spring 2013, Asia Volume 5, Number 10

Negotiation: Picking Your Battles Wisely
Breaking it Down

When picking a negotiation strategy, selection can be boiled down to addressing two main concerns: the outcome of the negotiation and the relationship you have with the other negotiator. From these two concerns we can derive four basic strategies you may use in your negotiation. These are namely the lose- lose strategy, win- lose strategy, win- win strategy and lose- win strategy. .

ACCOMODATING

STYLE

This is the lose- win strategy. Choosing this strategy means you prize your relationship with your negotiator more than the outcome of the negotiation. You may be in an inferior position that you want to improve by giving in to the other party’s demands. An accommodating strategist is not likely to be found in formal negotiations. His primary goal here is either to let go of a deal now for a better one in the future or to cool off present hostile feelings through encouraging open communication. Try not to use this strategy in the long- run as it may give you the reputation of being a pushover.

AVOIDING

STYLE

This is the lose- lose strategy. When you choose to avoid the negotiation, you are basically classifying the negotiation as a futile attempt to secure an outcome that you are not in the least bit interested in. Pursuing such a negotiation would take up money and time. A lose- lose strategy deems neither the relationship nor the outcome as important. Your BATNA (Best Alternative to a Negotiated Agreement) would also have given you the option of dropping your former negotiation and negotiating your BATNA instead.

COMPETITIVE

STYLE

This is the win- lose strategy, which is different from the lose- win strategy. In the win- lose strategy, you are making the conscious effort to be a competitive negotiator. Employ this strategy if you foresee this negotiation to be a one- off situation, if your relationship with your negotiator is already rocky from before, the relationship does not matter to you, or because you need to be on your defensive mode due to the other party’s reputation for being as tough- as- nails.

COLLABORATIVE

STYLE

In using a collaborative strategy, you are striving for a win- win situation. Choosing this strategy means you have history with the other party, or you would like to have a good relationship with them. At the same time, you want to accomplish your objectives. In order for this strategy to work, all parties involved must practice it. The collaborative approach is aptly named because it is a collaborative effort. Open communication is vital.

PUTTING

INTO PRACTICE

Your planning and assessing of your and the other party’s goals as well as understanding of the context of the negotiation will help in directing your decision of strategies, so remember to do your homework. As you assess the situation and context, which are factors not completely in your control, question if the negotiation was self-initiated or facilitated by a higher authority. Knowing who is behind the negotiation greatly influences your decision on which strategies to use.

60 Seconds

is All it Takes
to Know a Little More
Quick Tip1

When picking a negotiation strategy, selection can be boiled down to addressing two main concerns: the outcome of the negotiation and the relationship you have with the other negotiator.

Quick Tip2

Your planning and assessing of your and the other party’s goals as well as understanding of the context of the negotiation will help in directing your decision of strategies, so remember to do tour homework.

Quick Tip3

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