Negotiation skills are valuable in and out of the business world, so we make them parts of our Stone Hill Management training program. In our experience, negotiating is a challenge to many people, so we start with the basics – like always trying to have a plan in place before entering any sort of arbitration.
Sometimes it isn’t realistic to stop and game-plan before a discussion occurs though, so we also teach important thought processes. For instance, each party is likely to have a different perceived value for what is being discussed. When we realize we have a different idea for what something is worth than someone else, we ask questions to determine why and use this information to guide the conversation. This usually comes naturally to us, because learning and attentive listening are key Stone Hill Management principles.
When it comes to value, it’s also important to remember that it’s different than price. A good or service might seem too expensive to one person and a real bargain to another, depending on their needs. Rather than focus on the cost, look for ways to maximize value – added perks or a unique consideration are ways to increase value without necessarily requiring a higher price.