Seven Steps To Negotiating Successfully

When you negotiate, do you use a system? Do you haphazardly jump into a negotiation without any planning or thought for what you might do if you hit roadblocks? In order to negotiate successfully, good negotiators prepare before a negotiation.

The information that follows outlines seven steps you can use to negotiate successfully.

1. Gather Background Information: When gathering background information, include the style, values, ethnicity, culture, demographics (younger negotiators on/using twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and their way of communicating, versus those that are slower to use these mediums) and other information that’s pertinent to that particular session.

2. Assess your arsenal of tactics and strategies: The more you’re aware of how to use the appropriate tactic with the appropriate strategy, applied at the appropriate time, the more options you’ll have and be able to execute during the negotiation.

3. Create Your Negotiation Plan: Consider the overall strategy you’ll use for the negotiation. Break strategies into tactics. Assess possible strategies the other negotiator might employ. Take into consideration the use of red herrings (Note: Red herrings are items that have little to no value to you that you position as having value, but items that possess real value to the other negotiator). Also consider how you might apply pressure to points (leverage) throughout the negotiation.

4. Engage in the Negotiation Process: Observe body language and mannerisms. This can be done in person, via the phone, and in writing (e-mail, etc.). Note the style in which the other person negotiates (i.e. friendly (let’s get along), reserved (I’m not quite sure how this is going to go and I’m apprehensive), hostile (I’ll show you mine, if you show me yours – the only way for me to win is for you to lose – I’m in the driver’s seat; it’s my way or the highway).

5. Closing the Negotiation: Be on high alert for the conclusion of what you think is an agreement, that serves as the opening of the next phase of the negotiation; in some cultures, this is a common practice. If you’re unsure of the other person’s sincerity, put deliverables into phases of the negotiation.

6. Conduct a Postmortem: Dissect the negotiation. Assess what went right – What could have been improved upon – What you learned from that person about negotiation styles – What lessons should be taken forth into other negotiations – What went wrong – Why did it go wrong – What could you have done differently – What prevented you from using a better tactic/strategy to allow you to gain control of the negotiation).

7. Create Negotiation Archive: Create an archive of your negotiations and store them in a repository. Set up keywords to cross-reference sections, tactics, and strategies in your negotiation write-ups, to be used for the extraction of quick ideas and serve as a resource, for future negotiations.

Whether you’re a negotiation neophyte or a seasoned professional, by using the platform of the “Seven Steps To Negotiating Successfully” as your negotiation foundation, you’ll be considerably ahead of the other negotiator… and everything will be right with the world. Remember, you’re always negotiating.

The Negotiation Tips Are…

• When negotiating, seek advantages that allow you to exploit your strength, but don’t disparage the other negotiator in your enthusiasm to obtain victory.

• When a negotiation outcome is less than expected, learn from the experience. Commit to getting better. Increase your knowledge of how to use the right tactic, with the right strategy(s), aligned with the right situation.

• Make sure you observe and control your biases when assessing the person with whom you’ll be negotiating.

The Application Selection of Making Presentations

Nowadays, the application of making the presentation is divided into several categories. The main differences that are owned by their respective types of applications are generally located in the output files that are generated and the presenting media of presentation that is accommodated by the associated application.

The category type, output files, and presenting media of the presentation include:

Office Application

The use of office application is suggested for making the presentation of documents quickly and practically, with a brief and concise presentation. The integrity of office application allows the presentation of graphs, tables, and the data can be done easily.

Meanwhile, the flexibility in presenting the output file is very high, considering that in general, every computer has an office application in it. Microsoft PowerPoint is an application sample that is very commonly used for this requirement.

Multimedia Application

The use of multimedia application is recommended for making the presentation of documents that is interactive, automatic, and interesting. The use of effects, animation, graphic objects, as well as audio and video materials is more optimal if it is arranged through the application of this type.

Meanwhile, the flexibility of presenting the output of the presentation is limited. Generally, the output file that is resulted requires the application of certain aids to support presentation. This can be overcome by always preparing the source player of multimedia on the packaging of the presentation module. Macromedia Flash is an example of application that is commonly used for this requirement.

Documentation Application

The use of documentation application is recommended for making a presentation document with detailed and comprehensive material. This type of application is able to maintain the consistency of appearance precision and provide protection facilities on the document content.

The flexibility in presenting output files is a very high, even multi-platform (accessible from a variety of operating systems). In addition, the output files can be exchanged and presented securely via some methods (e.g. via internet). Tool of PDF Maker, like Adobe Acrobat or an HTML editor, like Microsoft FrontPage is a few application alternatives that you can use.

Based on the output and the presentation media that are supported by this type of presentation application, you can predict which application that is suitable with your need in making the presentation of documents.

Wireless Contract Negotiation – Understanding the Priorities of Wireless Contract Negotiation

Many organizations fall into the same trap when negotiating wireless contracts – listening to the wireless carriers. All wireless carriers know where the savings opportunities are, and most importantly they know what you’re spending. Negotiating the buckets of spending that your carriers offer will only end you with an ineffective contract.

There are a few guidelines you should follow when negotiating with your wireless carriers.

Know your spend. The most critical rule is knowing your spend. You wouldn’t go into a gunfight without ammo would you? You must understand how much you spend on voice and data plans, feature charges, minutes used, equipment purchases and replacements, etc. You will not get an acceptable contract without knowing your spend and where to focus.

Ignore volume percentage discounts. I’ve seen many companies focus on volume discounts, but it’s the absolutely wrong approach. I guess it’s a bragging right to tell all your procurement buddies, “I negotiated 25% from Carrier X.” I’d much rather take the initial 20% offered and focus on rate plan, features, equipment costs. The extra 5% would only equate to $50K annually for every million you spend.

Focus on service charges. Like the guideline above, focus on the service charges. After all, it makes up most of your wireless spend. Negotiating $10 off your rate plan costs would equate to an annual savings of $120k for every thousand users you have. Much more savings than focusing on the percentage discount.

Negotiate out of service level contract terms. The carriers will push for service level contract terms of one or two years. Negotiate out of this if at all possible. A service level contract term will complicate your wireless management, or you’ll be hit with early termination fees. If a line is under a two year service contract and that user leaves the company, cancelling the service early could result in a $200 termination fee. It’s much wiser to give back some of volume discount percentage to eliminate the early termination fee issue. If you can’t negotiate out of this clause, you’ll need to ensure you manage wireless numbers and reassign rather than cancel.

Fight for fixed equipment pricing. Like service line contracts, you don’t want to manage upgrade pricing. Many carriers will subsidize the first piece of equipment heavily but force you to pay extremely high costs if replacing within a year or two. Paying $500 for a Blackberry three times because you have an executive who keep dropping them off his yacht is not fun. Try to negotiate flat pricing for equipment. Don’t focus on specific models, as they always change, but on classes. Put the responsibility on your carrier to offer devices in the same class or higher at the negotiated rate.

Look for other benefits. Does your organization have other needs? Are you looking at Wi-Fi for your locations, bar code scanners at your warehouse, Fixed Mobile Convergence? Work with your carriers to provide these services as part of your contract. It’s extremely difficult to get capital approval in today’s environment. Let your carriers fund your projects. Wireless carriers are happy to provide these added services as it carries over into more usage and more users. As long as it’s related to wireless, your carriers can help.

Speed is a strategy. How long have you seen wireless contract negotiations take? Six, eight, ten months or longer? What value comes out of these long negotiations? I’ve seen organizations in a year long contract cycle and only achieve 10% greater savings than the offers exchanged in the first 2 months of the contract.

To clarify my point, let’s assume the initial contracts offered the potential for $500k in annual savings. The additional savings over a three year contract (at 10%) would equate to $150k.

  • Initial Contracts Savings Potential Annually = $500,000
  • Monthly Savings Potential – rounded = $ 42,000
  • 10 Month’s of Savings Lost = $ 420,000

In this scenario, the organization lost $420k in savings to achieve an additional $150k. Now, you could argue that the organization will still get the $420k, it’s just pushed out farther. This is true, but when you factor in the amount of time and man-hours invested into the longer contract cycle the $150k in extra savings erodes pretty quickly. In any event, I’d rather start getting $42k in savings now and move on to the next opportunity.

The specific approach to a wireless contract negotiation varies based on your organization’s specific needs, but these guidelines will help you focus on the true savings opportunities.