Negotiating Skills

Negotiating Skills

John Curtis’s Negotiation Skills training provides strategic frameworks for understanding negotiation and covers the communication skills needed to be effective.

Learn More About Negotiation Training with John Curtis

Are You Fluent in Body Language?

John Curtis, .

He lied. Did you see it? He moved his eyes side-to-side. What a shifty liar. Oh look, she’s lying too; she’s fidgeting like crazy. I don’t know what they’re lying about because I wasn’t paying attention, but they are definitely lying.

We all like to think we are capable of knowing what people are saying even when they are not saying a word. We believe that body language can tell us whether someone is telling the truth, whether what we’ve said has struck a nerve, whether someone is being evasive. In truth, we can only tell others are lying with accuracy every time – if their nose starts to grow in front of us. Without such a cue, it’s a crapshoot.

How to Prepare and Practice for Negotiation

John Curtis, .

Whether you are trying to resolve a workplace conflict, get a raise, purchase a home, or choose a vacation destination with your spouse, the key to a successful negotiation is understanding your interests and those of the other party. Interests are what underlie what the parties say they want. If you don’t know that, you don’t know what the currency of the negotiation really is. Like a traveler with foreign money, you don’t know the real value of what you have and/or what the other person really needs.

Strategies for Dealing with a Nightmare Negotiator

John Curtis, .

Jim Camp is a financial negotiator who has helped people deal with the US IRS for over two decades. He says, “My first tip is that the worst person to negotiate for yourself is yourself. Negotiation is a terribly emotional arena.” It can be emotional for all involved, and as a result, communication can be limited. This tends to set up conditions for an unsatisfying resolution, or no resolution at all. If you come to the table and face someone who is a “nightmare negotiator,” how do you deal with this challenge?

4 Ways to Practice Your Negotiating Skills

John Curtis, .

A LinkedIn survey found that, when it comes to negotiations, we’re a mess. Twenty-five percent have never negotiated in the workplace; only 37 percent of men and 26 percent of women felt confident in their negotiating abilities. Looking at 2,000 professionals in eight countries, including Germany, Brazil, India, and South Korea, the study found Americans are the most anxious about negotiations. I’m not picking on our friends in the States; I’m even going to make a wild leap and say that this applies to North Americans as a whole. But practice makes perfect. If we can brush up on our skills before sitting down at the table, the results can be much more favorable – and less anxiety-inducing.

What is your WATNA?

John Curtis, .

Winter’s coming, and you need someone to put a new liner in your chimney. You call that someone and get a quote for $2,500. You can say, “Sure, let’s do it,” or you can let the negotiations begin! In this case, your BATNA, or best alternative to a negotiated agreement, would be to hire another person who will do the job for a lower price – but what is your WATNA? What is the worst case scenario if you don’t reach an agreement with this first person? In any negotiation, it is important to make sure that you establish your best alternative, but also your worst so you can weigh your options with greater accuracy, and, hopefully, better results.

Why WATNA Might Not Be So Bad

John Curtis, .

You are the CEO of an aviation company, and you have a budget of $10 million with which to develop a plane that is not detectable by radar. After spending months, and $9 million, your competitor announces they’ve scooped you and made the plane. Not only did it cost less, but it performs better. Now, what do you do? Do you use the remaining $1 million to finish the project and release an inferior plane, or do you cut your losses and reinvest somewhere else?