Thriving in the world of business is an arduous task- one that requires leveraging key skills such as effective interpersonal communication, collaboration and the spirit to work hard. But if there is one indispensable element that gels these productive elements together and increases the probability of success, it has to be the art of negotiation.
In a nutshell, ‘negotiation’ means reaching an amicable agreement that works for all parties involved. Negotiations take place all around us. Whether its an employee asking for a raise, an employer convincing the higher-ups to hire more resources or a salesman looking to close a deal with a lucrative commission, the importance of it cannot be overlooked when analysing the professional world.
To be an effective negotiator, one needs to start by understanding the purpose behind negotiations. This purpose can mean different things according to the context of a professional. For example, negotiating a sales deal is motivated by a different purpose when compared to those dealt by managers or corporate directors.
Here we will establish the purpose of negotiations for three professions that require this skill the most: salesmen, managers and directors.
The Purpose of Negotiation for Salesmen
When it comes to the world of sales, being an effective negotiator can augment your earnings. Every sales professional knows the importance of connecting with a prospective client and making the dreamy pitch that converts into commissions. This connection can only be established if the salesman can walk through the negotiating process with a well-defined purpose in mind.
All transactions are made according to a simple principle- striking the perfect balance between the marginal benefits of the seller and the buyer, and negotiations bow to the same principle. When negotiating sales deals, the purpose in mind should be to strike an agreement that preserves the benefits of both parties. This means that the final contract and agreement should benefit both the salesman and the buyer.
This purpose guides the negotiating process for a salesman. Reaching a consensus that holds utility for both parties means that the salesman should orchestrate the deal in a fashion that shows the buyer, his willingness to concede. Reaching a workable agreement forms a firm business foundation that can be used to facilitate future deals.
The Purpose of Negotiation for Managers and Directors
Corporate managers and directors, on the other hand, are in a completely different professional setting. Often, they find themselves leading a cross-functional team of diverse individuals, each with their own business portfolios and responsibilities.
In this situation, the purpose of negotiations is to avoid conflicts that can derail the spirit of collaboration and bring disrepute to the organisation, and to settle disputes between dissenting business functions to ensure that work keeps progressing.
Furthermore, managers and directors have to supervise a large population of workers, so when negotiating, the purpose should also be to maintain mutual respect and to motivate people to see things from differing perspectives.
Negotiating effectively requires patience, composure and respect for the other person. Attaining these skills require a keen understanding of the purpose behind negotiation- reaching a mutually workable agreement.