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March 25, 2019

Should You Invest in a Negotiation Class?

Investing in yourself by participating in negotiation training classes can positively impact your personal and professional life in a powerful way. From the boardroom to your home, negotiations happen daily, and in many aspects of your life.

“At work, it’s contract terms, hiring, firing, defining deadlines, rallying the team, creating partnerships, dissolving them,” explains Hal Gregersen of Forbes. “At home, the negotiations continue – over who will clean the house, or handle school pickup and drop off the kids; enforce kids’ screen time, or decide how much to save and how much to spend.”

Make the most of your daily dealings with others by taking a course in this subject. Being a savvy negotiator is a valuable asset, and if you own or manage a business, offering a negotiation class to your team can give your bottom line a boost.

Negotiation as an Investment

Negotiation training classes are an investment in:

  • How to prepare effectively
  • Understanding the needs and interests of the other participants
  • Learning how to conclude better agreements through creativity
  • Identifying potential barriers or hindrances to the engagement
  • Adopting a collaborative approach to ensure building trust and rapport of your team, and securing long-term gains

From communication to persuasion, taking a class can powerfully change the dynamic of your business and life.

Master the Art of Communication with a Negotiation Class

Having exceptional communication skills is extremely important. Learning to exchange and share information effectively by attending a well-planned training class can increase your chances of success.

One of the most powerful aspects behind communication is listening. Research by Dr. Albert Mehrabian, Professor Emeritus of Psychology at UCLA, found that when there’s incongruence or inconsistency, a full 93% of communication is nonverbal.

When there’s doubt, a conversation is made up of . . .

  • Words: 7 percent
  • Tone of Voice: 38 percent
  • Body Language: 55 percent

Employing active listening skills in any situation allows you to pick up on what your negotiation partner wants and needs, including what they value and their Best Alternative to a Negotiated Agreement (BATNA).

Harvard Law School defined three foundational active listening aspects you can fine-tune with an effective class:

  • Paraphrase. Briefly repeat what your partner has said or requested in a brief and concise manner.
  • Inquire. Making inquiries allows you to define objections and ask questions regarding the state of a win-win obstacle.
  • Acknowledge. Let your partner know you are listening by restating what he or she has said.

Enhance Your Career and Professional Development Skills

Achieving your professional and personal goals can enhance your career. Attending training classes can help you in gaining powerful professional development skills that facilitate such achievements.

“Negotiation is a source of empowerment. It’s how we achieve things in the world,” explained Jared Curhan, Sloan Distinguished Professor of Management at the Sloan School, in a MIT Thought Leader Series interview.

Offering training classes to your team can also enhance their careers by honing those professional development skills. In turn, these skills translate to positive relationships between your team and your clients.

Develop Conflict Resolution with a Negotiation Class

Having expert negotiating skills gives you an advantage in multiple situations. Conflict resolution is one of the most important scenarios to employ this new skillset.

Possessing these skills can enable you to resolve conflict due to foundational communication and listening elements. Savvy negotiators uncover the main issues, as well as the driving forces behind these issues, in order to resolve conflict.

Harvard Law School has identified three conflict resolution strategies built upon negotiation to mend partnerships and create value.

These strategies are . . .

  • Avoid emotional responses. As much as the other participant may try to provoke you, keep emotions out of the discussion. Simply recognize the tactic and divert attention back to the issue in a calm way.
  • Continue to create value. Conflict resolution is too often viewed as a win-lose battle. However, keep your focus on the win-win by implementing value back into the discussion. The mantra of a collaborative negotiator is “I’m not happy unless you’re also happy.”
  • Time has its advantages. Stay in contact with your partner throughout conflict resolution. Talking and meeting regularly may help both participants come to terms.

Problem Solve Using Negotiation Training

Solving problems is the core of negotiation. You and your business are confronted with a variety of problems daily, and possessing the powerful skills obtained in training classes can assist in solving those problems effectively and efficiently.

Planning is an essential element of problem-solving, especially since every situation is unique. Have a strategy that allows you to problem solve masterfully.

“Despite the fact that ‘all business is human,’ there is no policy in place that shows their organization how to deal with their strategic partners,” explains Keld Jensen of Forbes. “As a result, the relationships and connections that the company builds are not operating at optimal levels of openness, trust, and profitability.”

Problem Solving Calls for Questions

Professional negotiators treat their questions seriously enough to write out before the meeting. By capturing your questions, you’ll boost your chances of remembering to ask. Writing out questions also increases the quality of your questions, as you’ll be forcing yourself to think more carefully about the words you use.

Here are a few questions worth asking yourself, and if it’s a group effort, then also your colleagues:

  • What are the tasks, variables, costs, times, and budgets that will be covered?
  • What is the scope on all the above discussion points?
  • How far am I willing to go before it becomes painful (BATNA)?
  • Am I willing to take risks if there are potentially higher returns on those risks?
  • What concessions am I willing to make?
  • What will I ask for in return for those concessions?

Conclusion

Negotiation is a dynamic and powerful process that can be very rewarding if you are a savvy business professional. The skills obtained from a training class facilitate the probability of success in your personal and professional goals. You and your team can hone the above skills and more by learning this powerful art form used in many aspects of life.

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