Four points of principled negotiation|ManualTrader

Four points of principled negotiation

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#1 People: Separate people from problems


"The generator you are in charge of repairing broke down again. This is the third time since last month. The first time it was broken for a full week. The factory needs a normal generator. I need your advice on how to put the machine The risk of damage is minimized; should we replace the repair company and sue the manufacturer, or what?"

It seems to be right to the wrong person. This example is to not blame the staff in front of you, focus on the problem, seek advice from the other party, and let the other party feel that their goals are the same.

Negotiations should put people first.

The cooperative relationship established over time is full of trust, understanding, respect and friendship, and each round of the negotiation process will be smoother and more effective. When the two sides have never known each other, it is very easy to blame the other side. It is said that whether it is a long-term customer or business partner, relatives, friends or colleagues, government officials or diplomatic countries, the relationship between each other is often far more important than the outcome of the negotiation. If the human aspect is neglected in the negotiation, it may have to pay a heavy price. Separate relationships from substantial interests and deal directly with people's issues first.

As for interpersonal issues, you only need to keep in mind three basic aspects: "viewpoint", "emotion" and "communication".

(1) Viewpoint

First of all, we must understand the other person's thinking, because the other person's thinking is actually the problem.

The difference lies in the gap between "the other party's thoughts" and "our thoughts." Usually the negotiating parties often only see the advantages of their own positions and the shortcomings of the other party. "Seeing the problem from the other side's perspective" is difficult, but it is one of the most powerful skills of the negotiator.

Understanding their views does not mean agreeing. When you understand that "understanding" does not mean "identification", you will not easily find it difficult for others to understand, because you will be willing to accept the idea that "no one will deliberately do something wrong."

As long as they are frank and sincere and don't accuse each other, this kind of discussion can bring each other the most needed understanding, and then earnestly accept each other's perspective. Everyone likes to be empathized. When someone can empathize with us, we will feel that he understands and can continue the discussion without feeling that we are wasting our efforts. When we are excluded from the negotiation process, even if the outcome is beneficial to us, we may still refuse to accept it out of doubt.

If both sides feel that the result has their own influence, it is easy to get to a tie. A proposal that has been revised by both parties will give each other a sense of identity. It is not that the proposal itself is unacceptable, but is purely a matter of perception. Be sure to make the other party feel involved and take action as soon as possible. Ask the other person for their opinions and appreciate them generously. The author said that after this they will feel that they have a responsibility to defend it.

(2) Mood

Especially in the negotiation of serious disputes, emotions may be more important than discussions. The first thing to do is to recognize and understand the emotions of the other person and yourself.


1. Write down how you feel (maybe fear, worry and anger)

2. Write down what you want to feel (confidence, relaxation)

3. Write down the emotions the other person may have

Many emotions in the negotiation are dominated by five core interests:

1. Autonomy-the desire to make decisions and control one's own destiny

2. Appreciation-the desire to be valued

3. Affiliation-the desire to be accepted by the peers

4. Role-the desire to have a sense of mission

5. Status-the desire for attention and affirmation

Trampling these benefits will often cause strong negative emotions. If you know how to handle it properly, it will be easier to establish a cooperative atmosphere and reach an agreement. Let the other party vent their emotions.

Generally speaking, to deal with other negative emotions such as anger and frustration, the effective way is to help them release those emotions. As long as a subject listens to his complaints, we will be immediately relieved psychologically. In addition to allowing the main negotiator to vent their emotions, if the other's common interest groups also hear it, their dissatisfaction will be simultaneously expressed along with the speaker.

Perhaps the best way to respond is to listen quietly, let the attacker not respond, and encourage the other person to continue from time to time to make sure he finishes the last word. The purpose of ensuring that the other party finishes the last word is to allow the other party to speak freely without any embers of dissatisfaction.

(3) Communication

There are three major problems in communication:

1. The two sides don’t want to communicate any more – deliberately not listening, looking for trouble, not wanting to find a way out side by side with each other

2. The other party may not be listening-inadvertently not listening, may be busy thinking about the next sentence

3. Misunderstanding-Even if everyone is in the same room, the communication between them may be like trying to transmit fireworks in a strong wind

The solution is to "listen actively and confirm what the other party is saying."

Good listening skills, start from listening carefully, ask the other party to elaborate carefully and clearly, and clarify any doubts. You can't just be perfunctory. The responsibility is to truly understand the other party's position, understand their views, needs, and restrictions.

Unless you clarify what the other party is saying and present evidence that you already understand, the other party will still suspect that you didn't listen at all. When you try to express a different opinion, they will assume that you have not grasped what they mean at all, so they begin to figure out how to modify the teaching so that you can understand it without paying attention to what you are talking about at the moment. This will be very inefficient, so it is important to let the other person feel that we understand what he means.

#2 Benefits: Focus on benefits, not positions

The fundamental issue of negotiation is not the conflict of positions, but the conflict between the needs, desires, worries, and fears of both parties. Position is what you have decided; interest is the reason for your decision. Based on so-and-so's interests, so decided to make a certain position decision

Interests are easier to coordinate than positions, because there are usually several possible positions to satisfy an interest. Once you understand your core interests, you have the opportunity to find other positions that can satisfy the interests of both parties at the same time. Insist on seeking your interests, but don't hold onto a specific plan.

In many cases of negotiation, if you look closely at the potential interests of both parties, you can find that the interests that are shared or matched with each other actually outweigh the conflicting interests.

Shared interests and different but complementary interests can be the cornerstone of a wise agreement:

You and the shoe seller may both like money heel shoes. Comparatively speaking, he is more interested in 50 dollars than a pair of shoes; on the contrary, you like that pair of shoes more than 50 dollars, so it is sold.

The sale of stocks can be successful, mostly because buyers look high and sellers look low. The difference in beliefs between the two parties became the basis of the transaction. For example, two children grabbing an orange, the last half of them, did not realize that one wanted to eat the pulp, and the other just wanted to bake a cake with the peel. If you know this is the case, one child can take all the pulp and the other child can take all the skins, and everyone can get the most benefit.

How to find out the other party's interests?

One of the most useful ways to tap interests is to first find out the basic decision of the problem, those positions that the other party thinks you will ask for, and then ask yourself why they oppose that decision. What other benefits are there?

If you want to change their minds, you have to figure out where their minds are currently. It is helpful to find out the core interests of the other party by understanding the "why the other party opposes".

In negotiations, we always think that money is the only benefit. Even in the case of the amount of negotiation, there are still many other factors involved.

For example, alimony in the divorce agreement, when a spouse asks for alimony of $1,000 a week, what do you really want? Economic stability is of course important, but what about others? Maybe they want to rely on money to bring a sense of psychological security, maybe they want a recognition: they feel treated with fairness and respect. Maybe the other party is unwilling or really unable to pay the money, but for the spouse to accept a lower amount, you have to find a way to meet their needs in terms of security and respect.

It seems that finding the core interests can not only make the negotiation more effective, but also give the other party what the other party really needs because of the key points. In addition to helping the other party, you can also give yourself the right things to reduce unnecessary wear and tear. The more you understand the other's concerns, the more you can satisfy them at the lowest cost. In addition to identifying the interests of the other party, it is also necessary to explain their own interests in a concrete and vivid manner. If you want the other party to hear your argument, you must first explain the reason for the issue you are concerned about, and put the conclusion or suggestion at the end.

Let the other party clearly understand how reasonable and important our interests are. The author says that we are duty-bound in this matter.

The premise is that we have made the other person feel that we have understood their feelings, and we have proved to them that we value their interests, so they will listen to us more seriously.

Only when we have a strong attitude and persistence, can we produce a truly wise solution: let the other party find a solution that can satisfy our best interests at the lowest cost. Negotiating parties who work tirelessly for their own interests can often inspire each other to come up with more creative and happy solutions. It’s a useful rule of thumb to give the other side the same proportion of positive support for how much effort you put into emphasizing the problem.

#3 Option: Try to find various options that are beneficial to each other

Before dividing the pie, make the pie bigger.

One of the most powerful assets of a negotiator is the skill of creating alternatives. In case your desired plan hits a wall, you can prepare some "weaker" versions to enrich the viable options on the negotiating table. If you can't reach a consensus with the first pick, it is usually not difficult to get a consensus with the second pick. People like to have autonomy, so the way to create options is smart.

Let the other party make choices within the range we have designed, and it will become as if the outcome is the decision made by the other party, but in fact, we are all OK for every choice.

Beware of the four main obstacles that fail to produce multiple solutions:

1. Criticize prematurely-For the idea, the biggest harm is the critical spirit of being ready to fight any loopholes in new ideas. Criticism killed imagination.

2. Only find a single answer-to find the best solution. This idea will drive you to shorten the decision-making process and give up exploring more and better possibilities.

3. Think that the pie is only that big-everyone thinks that the current situation is purely either or the other-either I win or you win. Most of the time, negotiation seems to be a "fixed-sum game".

4. Believe that "solving their problems is their own business"-psychologically, there is often a feeling of resistance to understanding the other side's point of view; trying to solve the other side seems to be unfaithful to their own people.

Avoid prescriptions that cannot produce multiple solutions:

1. Separate thoughts and criticisms.

2. Expand the options on the negotiating table and don't rush to find an answer.

3. Seek the interests of both parties, find common interests or close different interests (such as the story of two children grabbing an orange above). Find items that the other party values ​​and don't care about you, and vice versa.

4. Find a plan that makes it easy for the other party to make a decision.

#4 Standard: The evaluation criteria of conclusions should be objective

Regardless of whether the standards are fair, effective or scientific, as long as the more standards are introduced, the greater the probability of a fair outcome in the negotiation.

And by signing a standard lease or a sales contract that conforms to industry practices, neither party will feel bullied and attempt a comeback.

Adhering to reason is an easier position to defend—whether in public or in private. To produce results beyond the will, the author said that fair standards can be used to deal with substantive issues, or reasonable procedures can be used to resolve conflicts of interest. The two parties negotiated a reasonable arrangement before deciding on their respective roles.

For example, the ancient example of two children sharing a cake: one cuts and the other chooses first, no one can say that it is unfair. Or in terms of a divorce agreement, before deciding who has guardianship, both parties can agree to the other party's visitation rights (and responsibilities). After this step, both parties are more willing to agree to what they think is reasonable visitation rights. When considering a procedural plan, don’t forget the other basic methods of equalizing differences: taking turns, drawing lots, and finding a third party to make decisions.

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