A Both Sides Gain Approach to Negotiation

Posted on 11/08/2016 in Sales Negotiation Skills

Three magic words in successful negotiations are "Both sides gain."

Your negotiation planning process should include making a list of alternative outcomes for an agreement where both parties can say that they have gained.

Of course it does not mean that everyone will get everything they want. It may be easy to say "both sides gain" but the hard part is making it happen. Three general guidelines that will help you get started are below:

  1. In the planning process, identify possible “gain” outcomes for both sides. Identifying your critical needs and objectives is the first step. Next, to the greatest extent possible, try to anticipate the critical needs and objectives of the other party.
  2. During the negotiation, explore for options and alternatives on both sides. Make this a dialogue and be sure you are prepared with thoughtful questions.
  3. Emphasize what you are giving the other party, not what you are asking for. You are more likely to come to an agreement this way.

Here is an example of a STAR negotiation where both sides gained. One of our large clients had their own training facility in Manhattan. The client had to make some budget cutbacks due to a slowdown in the economy. As such, they told us that they had to reduce the number of workshops for the next calendar year. We negotiated an agreement with them during which we reduced our fee so that they could continue to run the standard number of workshops with us. In return, we asked for the use of their training facility for other clients.

This was a “both sides gain” outcome because we were able to use their training facility to win a lot of new business due to the fact that we could offer a training facility to other clients. From our client’s perspective, they were able to afford more workshops and exchanged the use of their training facility on unused days, in return for a price concession.
This meant that the agreement met our need for growth and our client’s need to remain within budget.

Call us at 781-760-6248 or email info@salestrainingandresults.com to discuss a customized Negotiation Skills workshop. Additional negotiation online training resources include our Negotiation Concessions Sales Meeting Kit and One-on-One Coaching for Sales Negotiation