Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Negotiator Errors

There are a huge number of potential mistakes that a negotiator can make in the negotiation process.  Here’s just a few high level ones:

For strategy and tactics:
  • Not identifying the relative leverage of the parties
  • Not selecting the appropriate negotiation strategy for the leverage
  • Not selecting the appropriate tactics for the strategy.

In planning:
  • Not doing sufficient research on the Supplier, their operation, how they manage their business, what they will want and need out of the negotiation and what information you can use in the negotiation.
  • Not creating a negotation plan to work from

Leading up to the Negotiation
  • Not setting the right expectations with the Supplier
  • Not effectively managing communication so information that shouldn’t be disclosed is disclosed to the Supplier that impacts your leverage.
  • Not managing the perception of competition (if that is available)

In the negotiation
  • Not managing the negotiation and your team.
  • Focusing on people, problems, or past history rather than the real issues.
  • Not probing to understand the real issue or concern of the Supplier.
  • Not being attentive and listening to the Supplier for any clues they may provide.
  • Not effectively selling your position.
  • Not keeping track of concessions and their impact to the Price you want to pay. or your total cost.
  • Not using the leverage you have.
  • Not using information you know about the Supplier to your advantage.
  • Ineffectively communicating your needs or showing conviction in those needs.
  • Acting or communicating in a way that creates barriers to the communication where other party has negative emotions about the negotiator,  has a lack of respect, distrusts, of feels they have a lack of sensitivity to their issues.
  • Letting negotiations drag on so you lose the leverage of the power you had or other options.
  • Repeatedly asking the same question or the same question phrased differently in hopes of a different answer.
  • Not saying No when no is an appropriate response.
  • Not clarifying what was agreed to ensure there was agreement and documenting what was agreed.
  • Not feeling you can re-open things that were already agreed if something has changed. 

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