Dealing With Difficult Negotiators
Tips For Dealing With a Difficult Negotiator
What if They're More Powerful Than You?
Best Alternative To a Negotiated Agreement
- This is your minimally acceptable agreement (the very least you are willing to accept in a negotiation)
- Create a "trip wire" - something before BATNA that you can use as an early warning system (you don't won't to accept anything lower than this)
- Vigorously explore what your BATNA should be
- Consider what the other side's BATNA may be
- MAY INCREASE what you could get out of the negotiation vs. not knowing your BATNA
What does BATNA stand for?
- Best Alternative Targeting an Agreement
- Best Alternative To a Negotiated Agreement
What if They Won't Play?
You're using principled negotiation, but the other side is using positional negotiation...
What YOU can do:
- Concentrate on merits, not positions
- Don't attack their position, look at the interests behind their positions
- Don't defend your ideas - invite criticism and advice
- Recast an attack on you as an attach on the problem
- Ask questions & pause
- Call on a third party if required
You should always defend yourself against attacks or criticism during a negotiation
- You should try to reframe attacks on you as attacks on the problem
- Always defend yourself against attacks.
Dealing With a Hard Bargainer
Negotiate About the Rules of the Game
- Separate the people from the problem
- Focus on interests, not positions
- Invent options for mutual gain
- Insist on using objective criteria
Watch Out For:
- Deliberate deception - fake facts (you may need to proceed independently of trust), ambiguous authority (find out about authority PRIOR to the negotiation), less than full disclosure is not the same as deception
- Psychological warfare - stressful situations, personal attacks, good guy/bad guy routine, threats
- Potential pressure tactics - refusal to negotiate, extreme demands, escalating demands, lock-in tactics, hard-hearted partners, a calculated delay, "take it or leave it" talk