Negotiation tips, phrases, strategies, tips, tricks, quotes, case studies and advice from The Negotiating Coach.

Buying a Sale – The High Cost of Poor Negotiating

Buying a Sale – The High Cost of Poor Negotiating

Making a sale – it sounds simple enough. But if you bargain badly, you may end up “buying” that sale.

The real art of negotiating is to complete a satisfactory exchange without giving away more than necessary. The challenge is to identify all the components of the exchange and to realize how much value you and your customers place on each of them.

Too often, companies fall victim to their own bad negotiating. An oversimplified barter of an increasingly expensive package of concessions means that eventually they have not made the sale but have bought the sale!

As the marketplace becomes increasingly complex and competitive, salespeople often don’t have the necessary skills, or they neglect to apply the proper art of negotiating and resort to the more common and less challenging “concession sale.”

Picture this familiar scenario: A salesperson makes what he thinks are gratuitous concessions, believing he is closing in on a deal. But as he nears closing, he realizes that all the concessions made so far are seen by the other party as merely the starting point for final negotiation. He is then trapped into making additional concessions to get the business, having already committed his company to everything he has “thrown in” along the way.

Not only has the real cost of the transaction gone up, but also the salesperson can’t be certain that the initial concessions were required at all. One thing is clear, though: Reclaiming spent concessions is not possible – and they now have become part of the base package that the customer expects.

Because negotiating skills are not adequately refined on the supply side, corporations throughout North America have seen gradual erosion of their profit margins. On the buying side, sophisticated customers are increasing not only their profitability but also their power base. This dynamic has generated a growing number of vulnerable suppliers prepared to give greater concessions at each transaction to maintain their business volume in the face of collapsing margins.

Here are some suggestions to help you avoid “buying the sale” when negotiating:

  • Follow a disciplined process in order to achieve desired results.
  • Carefully determine the wants and needs of the customer before making concessions.
  • Avoid making concessions early in the sales process.
  • Identify all concessions you are prepared to make and know the cost of each.
  • Don’t assume there is value in a concession just because there is cost.
  • Invest in the appropriate training to become a better negotiator.
  • Reinforce your training annually to stay one step ahead of your customers.

Remember: Nothing affects the bottom line of your company more, or your personal income more, than good negotiating skills. You can’t make money faster than when you’re negotiating well!

Negotiating for Women

Negotiating for Women

Key Facts and Information for Women Negotiating

  1. Women need to approach negotiating not as a contest or competition as many men do – but as a chance to work together to solve problems that affect both parties.
  2. Women need to learn to negotiate as women – not as men. There is no such thing as a “gender-based” negotiating process, methodology, strategies, and tactics.
  3. Many women’s gender-based desire to “foster and protect” relationships can make them fear that a disagreement or conflict may arise during a negotiation.
  4. Whenever many women have negotiated effectively, with the negotiation resulting in a Win-Win outcome, they said that the most important strategy was “choosing to negotiate in the first place.”
  5. Many women often worry about the impact that negotiating may have on their personal, social, and professional relationships.
  6. Some women may worry about making mistakes when they negotiate – so they don’t try to negotiate.
  7. From a very young age, many women are taught to focus on the needs of others – rather than on their own specific wants and needs. This “non-asking behavior” can act as a “psychological straitjacket” for some women.
  8. Gender-based standards and social expectations for behavior may often require some women to behave modestly and unselfishly. If they do rebel against these historical standards, then they may be seen as “pushy or difficult” to work with. When many women experience ridicule or rejection, they may get anxious when they consider asking for what they want. Anxiety and discomfort can generally deter some women from negotiating.
  9. To protect personal connections, many women may ask for what they want in an indirect manner. When women do ask for what they want, they generally ask for less than they want, and they sometimes try to get what they want by attempting to be more “deserving” – by working harder and working longer hours.
  10. Some women believe that they’ll be given what they want and deserve – without asking for it or trying to negotiate for it. Unfortunately, in certain situations, some women may become insecure and may believe that they don’t deserve what they are asking for.
  11. Generally, men ask for what they want at least two to three times more often than women do.
  12. Many people have historically reacted somewhat negatively to women who are involved in negotiations. They feel that any woman who decides to negotiate may be acting in a “competitive” or “aggressive” manner.
  13. Negotiation has become a collaborative process, aimed at finding the best solution (Win-Win outcome) for everyone. This approach to negotiating is more attractive to most women – potentially making them less confrontational, competitive, and argumentative than men. This approach can usually make women more effective negotiators than their male counterparts.

What Can Women Do To Improve Their Negotiating Process and Skills

It is important for women to understand and accept the current situation that impacts most of their negotiations. Women need to invest in learning a sustainable and repeatable negotiating process, methodology, strategies, tactics, and the techniques that they can utilize and implement in their personal, social, and most of all, in their business negotiations.

Pursuing a “gender-based” approach to developing their negotiating skills will not be effective. Women need to capitalize on their inherent strengths and then address the weaknesses in their skill development.

In conclusion, women should consider the following suggestions to improve their negotiating process and skills:

  • Develop some personal strategies to help overcome the emotions that are associated with negotiating. Start by moving past these emotions and treat negotiations like an art, a science, and a sport.
  • Don’t be intimidated or afraid of the negotiating process or by the people involved in any negotiation.
  • Deal with any negotiation from a position of personal strength by developing competence through skill building.
  • Invest in taking a practical, educational negotiating seminar or learning workshop.
  • Learn and practice the proven phrases and scripts that can help women overcome issues when negotiating with the other party in any negotiation.
  • Don’t run out and buy a book about negotiating skills for women. The majority of content will simply reinforce and reiterate what has already been outlined in the thirteen points in this article.