Want to know how to negotiate better?

The key to any successful negotiation is understanding what you are trying to achieve. As you or your team seek to become better business negotiators, it is important to have a foundational understanding of key negotiation concepts.

What is negotiation?

Negotiation is simply two (or more) parties trying to reach an agreement.

What is successful negotiation?

Successful negotiation is when all parties feel they have achieved a “win-win” outcome. It is vital to remember that negotiation is not a zero-sum game. The most successful negotiators look to create value–positive items that benefit the other party–and claim value–items of benefit to them. This approach means that all parties feel they have achieved a fair and equitable deal and provides a firm foundation for long-lasting, productive relationships.

How do I become a better negotiator?

Negotiation is a skill. And, just like any skill, it can be learned or strengthened through a combination of training and real-world experience. Unlike many of our esteemed academic rivals, at TableForce, our team of experts has leveraged decades of experience at the negotiation table to capture, distill and organize their knowledge and skills into a proven negotiation methodology. Our practical strategies and techniques can be applied immediately to help you learn how to negotiate better business deals.

How to Negotiate Using the TableForce Advantage

There are seven stages to any negotiation. At TableForce, we refer to these stages as:

  1. Situational Analysis
  2. Preparation
  3. Agenda Setting
  4. Opening
  5. Bargaining
  6. Agreement Formation
  7. Closing

We build our negotiation training around the proven three-prong methodology of Trying Harder, Planning Better, and ultimately, Raising the Bar. This TableForce Advantage will help you move through the seven stages of negotiation with confidence.

Trying Harder means opening and bargaining from a strong position.

  1. Opening
    • State strong opening position based on your team’s objective
    • Ask questions about other party’s needs, wants and interests
    • Understand and restate other party’s starting position
    • Seek to build long-term relationships
    • Set tone with energy, enthusiasm and confidence
  2. Bargaining
    • Spot other party’s negotiation tactics upfront
    • Counter those tactics effectively
    • Protect value and information
    • Use yields and shields to “give and get” value
    • Articulate parameters by giving clear “yes”/”no” and “but”/”if” answers (also known as the “habit and loop”)

Planning Better means engaging in a clear-eyed situational analysis, preparing and setting the agenda.

  1. Situational Analysis
    • Define your short- and long-term position
    • Understand your market
    • Determine if you face strong or weak competition
    • Outline your goals, including needs and desired outcomes
    • Identify strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats
  2. Preparation
    • Ascertain position of the negotiating party
    • Assign value to items
    • Identify yields (items you are willing to concede) and shields (must-haves)
    • Design an effective negotiation strategy
    • Prepare offers
  3. Agenda Setting
    • Establish and agree upon meeting logistics
    • Determine location
    • Set time and timing
    • Identify participants and seating arrangements
    • Clarify focus and ensure your team is pointed in the same direction

Raising the Bar means forming an agreement and closing with a “win-win” outcome for all parties.

  1. Agreement Formation
    • Acknowledge stalled or deadlocked negotiations
    • Restate points of agreement
    • Create value for all parties
    • Claim value for your party
    • Arrive at the “win-win”
  2. Closing
    • Recognize the close
    • Summarize agreements
    • Define next steps and continuing relationship
    • Confirm agreements
    • Sign contract

Let TableForce negotiation training become part of your toolkit and learn how to negotiate better business deals today.

Negotiation Training from the Best

Our TableForce partners have a combined seven decades of experience leading successful negotiations across six continents. We have worked with organizations of all sizes–from global Fortune 500 companies to local small businesses–in industries as varied as construction, manufacturing, software services and others.

We built our training program and materials around the principles, strategies and tactics that result in win-win outcomes in the real world, giving our clients the full benefit of the “TableForce Advantage.”

Additionally, we pride ourselves on developing long-term client relationships and on offering a full suite of training options, so clients learn how to negotiate better business deals, including:

  • Comprehensive, customized workshops and seminars
  • Engaging, self-paced online training videos
  • White papers on negotiation tactics and strategies
  • Newsletters
  • FAQs
  • Glossary pages
  • And more!