Modes of Negotiation

There are five modes of negotiation, recognition of which will enable the negotiator to be more effective.

1) The co-operative mode: Here both parties seek to gain from the negotiation process. To do so, both parties seek the ways of doing so.
2) The competitive mode: One party’s loss is another party’s gain. The gains achieved by one party are at expenses of the other.
3) The organization mode: behind each negotiator there are many others in his organization. The negotiator may well have more difficulty negotiating with his organization than with the other side. Your job is to help the opponent negotiate with his organization.
4) The attitudinal mode: trust, friendship, goodwill, integrity, credibility, etc form the parts of this mode.
5) The personal mode: One’s personal ego, workload, and home commitment are the important issues to be considered while negotiating. You will improve your negotiation if you are aware of these issues concerning your opponent.

Identification of Objectives:

1) The first objective in negotiation is to ensure that all the topics that you wish to have discussed are covered and dealt with to your satisfaction.
2) The second objective in negotiating is to ensure either that those points which you do not wish to have raised are not raised or, if they are, that you can suitably counter them.
3) The third objective is to ascertain what is that your opponent is hoping to obtain from the discussion. Just as you evaluate your own, you should assess your opponents needs, wants and desires.
4) The fourth objective in negotiating is to ensure that your own preferred strategy is followed during all the preliminary stages and when you face your opponent across the table.

Collecting and analyzing Information

With respect to the subject which is to be negotiated between the parties of negotiation, the information should be gathered accordingly.

1) The supply and the demand factors of the product / service in the market should be analyzed.
2) The supplier’s product / service quality and the price should be readily defined in comparison with the other suppliers in the market.
3) The significant macro-economic factors that affect the supply and the demand of the product / service should be analyzed.
4) The information can also be drawn from the recent deals done which are similar.

Defining the Strategy and selecting the Tactics to be employed

Strategy: It is defined as a brand game plan.

Strategy can be defined as a broad game plan. A strategy has three main elements, which can be remembered as the three M’s namely Mission, Means, and Metrics.

Mission: It is the targets or objectives that you wish to achieve.

Mission is the targets or objectives that you wish to achieve. These objectives are clearly defined in the above paragraphs. Mission also includes among other things, the statement of the needs, wants and desires that the negotiation seeks to satisfy. The mission does not therefore represent the platform from which you intend to conduct your negotiation, but the outcome you seek from it.

Means are the methods and devices you will use to achieve the defined mission.

Means are the methods and devices you will use to achieve the defined mission. These need to be defined initially in broad terms signifying the principles that you will adopt the degree and type of preparation and the general approach that will drive your discussions. Means may include elements of detail as to how you will put these genral principles into practice.

Metrics define the ways in which you will measure your achievement against the needs, wants and desires set out in your strategy.

Metrics define the ways in which you will measure your achievement against the needs wants and desires which have been set out in your strategy. Metrics may include both objective and subjective measures of progress and achievement and should be set against the time scales within which these achievements are expected to be attained.

Examine which of the topics that you are likely to be negotiating are the most important to you and which have less relevance. The purpose is to establish in your mind a hierarchy of significance. That will influence much of your subsequent thinking and reactions to the other party’s negotiating approach. Clearly, the hierarchy that you set up must include any topics which you will not specifically wish to discuss, but which the other side may put on the table.

There is much value in developing a well thought out, robust strategy with suitable alternative courses of action, and using this as the driving force throughout a negotiation. But you should also consider the work that the other party has been putting into their strategy and how they might be approaching the issues before them. A well structured strategy on your part which takes no account of how the opposition can be expected to behave may have to be scrapped very early on, when it is found not to be working.

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