Customer Experience News & Trends

Become a better negotiator: 3 tips

The better prepared you are going into a negotiation, the greater your chances of success. Here are three tips for preparing for a negotiation: 

  1. Figure out what you want. Identify what you hope to achieve and itemize issues and rank them by importance. Consider your possible concessions and strategies for each item you list.
  2. Figure out what your customers want. Try to look at their considerations from their prospective.
  3. Develop your negotiating strategy. Conduct research and identify the types of issues on the table. Probe for possible weaknesses in your prospect’s arguments and weigh your best negotiating tactics and strategies.

Anchor and beyond

The first offer may act as an anchor, setting a starting point for the negotiation. Customers may ask for more than they reasonably expect, setting their offer high enough for consideration but not so high that you walk away. The anchor price may set the starting point for the negotiation.

The right atmosphere

The anchor offer creates the right atmosphere and establishes your customer’s expectations.  It also gives you an excellent opportunity to gather additional information to update, correct and refine your data on customer expectations.

More than one issue

When negotiating a deal with more than one issue, try to view your negotiation as a unified package. Identify the issues so you can concede on items of low value in order to get allowances on higher-valued issues. Negotiating items as a package may gain you more of what you want.

Adapted from: Getting More of What You Want by Margaret Neale and Thomas Lys. Neale teaches at the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University, and Lys teaches at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.

Subscribe Today

Get the latest customer experience news and insights delivered to your inbox.