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The art of negotiation

columns Updated: Jun 18, 2013 00:48 IST
PP Wangchuk

Negotiation is a part of our daily routine. We do it knowingly or unknowingly. And most of the time, we emerge no better. We “give up” easily or become headstrong. And we end up as losers either way.

Negotiation is an art and one has to negotiate at every step tactfully. But negotiations in daily ways of life happen routinely and even unconsciously. We negotiate on when to sleep and when to wake up.

We negotiate on our eating habits and most often land up eating the less nourishing food for tastier ones. We negotiate with our kids and with elders in most give-and-take work.

Children are the most difficult ones to negotiate with. Either you concede to their demands, or you leave them sore as well as yourself.

And, one has also to negotiate outside one’s immediate family. Those are the tougher ones, leaving a deep impact either way—in success or in failure.

Negotiating a business deal, a pay hike, a promotion etc. takes greater will and patience and focused attention.

One thing that is crucial in striking a deal is to keep in mind that no one comes out a loser at the end of the deal. Otherwise, no deal is successful and both the parties end up disappointed. Be fair; if you play fair, the result too will be fair.

Great negotiators have the ability to see that you don’t lose your focus on your target; and if you somehow can sense the other party’s target, your job is half-done.

J Paul Getty too said, “You must never try to make all the money in the deal; let the other fellow make some money too; because if you have a reputation of always making all the money, you won’t have many deals.”

And, to be fair is to be successful. You must deal in a manner that others would like to deal with you in the future too. You must be a part Sherlock Holmes and a part Sigmund Freud, as American entrepreneur Victor Kiam advised.