Monday, January 24, 2011

Psychological Needs of Negotiators

Everyone has certain psychological needs and sales people are trained to use them.
Basic individual needs *1
Sales person’s attempt to play to those needs
Their Goal
Physiological needs (food, water, shelter)
How about lunch to talk this over ?
Get useful information. Do things where they will owe you a favor.
Safety & Security
We can offer you a “no- risk” solution to your problem at a competitive price.
Use risk avoidance to get the order.
Love and belonging
As a special customer we would like you to be our guest at the Game.
Get useful information. Break down any adversarial relationship.
Esteem (freedom, independence, strength, confidence
Boy, are you a tough negotiator! This is one of the most professional approaches I’ve seen.
Appease you, reduce additional requests for concessions
Self Actualization (inner motivation to succeed)
If we work this relationship we know that it will save you (time, money, resources) (with the implied understanding that will help with your success.
It will help you but it will also help them by getting the order
To know and understand (seek knowledge on environment)
I probably shouldn’t be telling you this but here’s what we are doing at XYZ Co. (your competition.)
Foster close relationship
where they can call upon you for help, or you won’t push them as much
Esthetic (need for order and balance, esthetics)
Of course we can change it to that way, clearly your approach makes more sense and is easier to understand.
Smooth out the discussions.
*1 Maslow basic factors in human behaviour (Abraham Maslow, Motivation & Personality, Harper & Row,

As individual’s personalities are different, the order of priority is dependent upon the individual. Individuals who lack confidence may be focused on the least risky situation whereas individuals who are driven to succeed may be less concerned with managing the risk than seizing the opportunity that will enhance their careers. A good salesperson will quickly understand your “hot buttons” and will tailor their selling approach to what they perceive your needs to be. Procurement professionals need manage this and either mask their needs or use them to get what they want. They also need to ensure that their personal motivations are consistent with the company’s requirements. 

As sales people have the same needs, the Buyer's Negotiator can also seek to understand the Sales Person's primary motivations and use them when appropriate.

Sales Person's Needs
Examples of  Negotiator’s Goals
Physiological Needs
Do they need this order for meeting their quota?
Use need for sale at specific time to leverage better pricing or other concessions.
Safety & Security
Do they need this order or contract for their bonus?
Use desire for their goals to get better pricing or concessions
Love and belonging
I really don’t have the time, but for you I’ll squeeze you in.
Maintain good relationship. In the end we need each other.
It’s great to deal with someone who is prepared and doesn’t waste my time.
Set the stage for further, more difficult discussions.
Self actualization
This contract would be a big win for you, wouldn't it?
Use desire to seek better pricing or other concessions.
To know and understand
Would you like to hear our future plans and direction?
Offer some information to get information you may need. Put them in a position of being "in the know" so they can be a voice for your needs in their company
Your review makes some good points that we hadn’t thought of. We’ll review them in greater detail with the affected parties.
Show that you have heard them, appreciate what they had to say even if you choose not to accept it.

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