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5 Negotiation Tips and the One Negotiation Hack You Need to Know

5 Negotiation Tips and the One Negotiation Hack You Need to Know
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How can you be a confident negotiator, get the price you want that feels valuable, and be happy about the transaction?

In a growing world where prices are continually fixed, negotiators and ones who can do so successfully are hard to find.

The truth of the matter is that while most people don’t want to negotiate and will avoid doing it whenever they can, this leads to a tremendous opportunity for those who do know how to negotiate.

The following are the 5 negotiation tips and the one negotiation hack you need to know:

1. Research and set an ideal outcome with a plan to get there

Before you do your negotiation have your research done and know what the market is for the item that you are looking to buy or sell. When you have this figure in mind then you need to plan out the likely ways that your outcome is likely to come to fruition.

Negotiations are rarely going to go according to plan, but you need to set a worse case scenario plan. What is the most you will pay for an item or the least you are willing to settle for in letting an item go?

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Then you also need to do the same for the best-case scenario. What is the lowest price that you can pay for the item or what is most that you can get for the item you are selling?

When you have the best-case scenario you can direct your mind better in what you want to accomplish. The worst-case scenario will show you what you need to avoid and how to be better directed towards a more favorable outcome.

2. Don’t take the negotiations personally           

The biggest resistance people have to negotiations that they might be unaware of is their unwillingness to take out the personal aspect out of the negotiation. They see it as a friendship and aim for a person to like them better than to achieve their goal.

People like others more who they respect. It is more challenging to respect someone who is willing to compromise themselves and what they want in favor of being liked. In the same vein, it is hard to not respect someone who goes for what they want.

Take the personal aspect of the negotiation out of the equation. Focus on what you want and do what it takes to get there. Most negotiations can be totally friendly, but they are actually more challenging to engage in if you are worrying what everyone thinks of you.

3. Bid to the extremes

It doesn’t matter who states the first price. You should be well versed in what this product is worth, the market for such an item, and you should have an ambitious figure in mind for your first offer.

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Whether it is bidding low when you are buying or setting a high price when selling, you are giving yourself more room to negotiate by setting an extreme figure that your counterpart has to accept or adjust for.

Going too far at an extreme has the potential to drive a deal maker away, but there are always more people to deal with. Making sure you set firm your initial standards will at the very worst show the person you are doing business with that you are for real.

4. Aim for counter offers

If the potential deal has come together with only one offer and acceptance, then it is very likely that you could have done better in your negotiations. Upon your first offer, your counterpart should always give a counter offer.

If they immediately accept instead, then you know you could have offered lower or higher depending on your side of the deal.

Remember, most people want to get out of a negotiation as soon as possible. They are worried about upsetting others and don’t want to feel the pressure of the event. Go back with a few well-planned counter offers and you will wear your fellow dealmaker down and get exactly the right price that you were looking for.

5. Honesty first

Commonly there is a lot of negotiation advice that is deceitful or deceptive and this will only inhibit your negotiation skills, strategies, and success as a negotiator.

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While you may get a quick win, it is more important that you develop the skills and can have long standing positive and fruitful business relationships.

For these reasons, if you are the one in charge don’t act like you have someone else making the ultimate decision. This is dishonest and deceitful. Own your negotiation. Don’t tell someone else, “This is the lowest I can go.” This leads to limitations and most people are more likely to do deals with people who are more flexible.

And finally, the one negotiation hack you need to know:

When you are negotiating as the buyer of an item, right before you present your initial offer you need to say something negative about the item up for purchase.

“I like this car, but the tires look bald and will definitely need to be replaced soon. Will you take $5,000?”

You include the negative phrase because it is psychological in nature.

People are motivated by the fear of loss more than the pleasure of gain. When you include a phrase such as the above you give the seller fear and the pleasure of the sale becoming completed right after.

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Most times this hack compels a seller to move the item right then, but if they don’t it gives you an extra edge in your negotiations as well.

Being a good communicator and negotiating what you want is a key to life. If you can’t negotiate, you will be worse off in your relationships, your career, and your life.

How would you be able to have a balanced relationship if you couldn’t negotiate the responsibilities in such partnership?

Use the preceding advice and take your skills of negotiation to the next level. By continuing to practice you will soon feel yourself becoming a fine dealmaker.

Featured photo credit: Robert Owen-Wahl via pixabay.com

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Shawn Schweier

Life Success Coach

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Published on July 27, 2021

15 Smart Video Conferencing Etiquette Tips to Follow

15 Smart Video Conferencing Etiquette Tips to Follow
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During the pandemic, video conferencing replaced in-person meetings and has now become the standard option for business meetings. Over the past 17 months, most workers have gotten past the video conferencing learning curve with Zoom or Microsoft Teams (or their platform of choice).

But just as with in-person meetings, attention can wax and wane. Some say we’re just not used to staring at ourselves so much on the screen. Instead of fixating on that, try employing smart video conferencing etiquette, or you may risk indiscretions that will flag you as a slacker.

Put the Pro in Professional

After more than a year of fine-tuning, here are the new rules of video conferencing etiquette.

1. Mute Your Mobile and Other Devices

The first video conference etiquette you need to know is muting your other devices. Just as in the pre-COVID days, someone’s obnoxious ring tone blaring Taylor Swift’s newest single in the middle of a meeting is also an annoyance if it happens during a Zoom meeting and so is the inevitable fumbling to turn off the sound. Even the apologies to the group get tiresome.

Also, when notifications are activated on the computer that you’re using for the meeting, the incoming message takes over the audio and you’ll miss out on snippets of the conversation. Be sure to eliminate this possible faux pas.

2. Dress the Part

While working from home, you may have fallen into the habit of slipping on your comfiest T-shirt each day. Hey, no judgments! But before you log on to your video conference, try to make an effort with your appearance.

Depending on your company culture and the importance of your meeting, consider dressing the part of the professional whom you wish to project. It will help you feel more self-assured, and others will likely take you more seriously.

For women, wear light make-up, put on earrings, and make sure your blouse is crisply pressed. For men, show up freshly shaved. Wearing a crisp collared shirt in a solid color will usually suffice.

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Pro Tip: Stay away from wearing white or black, unless those colors look great on you. Consider wearing light blue or brown instead.

3. Stage Your Workspace

Have you noticed the backdrops of experts interviewed on news shows? Bookshelves and photographs are carefully curated, and no busy-patterned furniture or artwork is in sight.

Take note of what appears behind you when you choose the location of your video conferences. Piles of junk mail on the table or stacks of folded laundry on the couch will convey more about your personal life than you care to share. Make sure you remove clutter from the camera’s eye, and present a tidy, orderly workspace to your colleagues, coworkers, and bosses.

4. Put Some Thought Into Lighting and Perspective

Be aware that in a video conference, your computer camera can actually make you look up to ten pounds heavier depending on where you sit. But you can easily drop those added pounds by moving back from the screen to diminish the wide-angle distortion.

Frame your head on the screen by tilting the screen up or down. Also, it’s best to not place yourself in front of a window or bright light, which makes you appear in shadow. Instead, face the light source, moving it (or yourself) until you have a flattering amount of illumination. You can also purchase some small spotlights that allow you to add light as needed.

Pro Tip: If your lights add too much redness to your skin, consider counter-balancing with a green filter.

Remember That Half of Life Is Showing Up

5. Arrive on Time

In the old days of in-person meetings, it was nearly impossible to slip in late into a meeting unnoticed. In today’s video conferences, logging in late still shows poor form. Instead, strive to arrive five minutes early and get yourself settled.

Once the meeting is underway, the host may be less attentive about late arrivals waiting to be let in. Diverting the host’s attention away from the meeting with a tardy entry request is the ultimate giveaway that you didn’t honor the schedule. If you don’t want a black mark against you, log in on time.

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6. Turn on Your Video

Few people like to see their face on the screen, but buck up and turn on your camera in video conferences. In most cases, it’s better to be a face on a screen than a name in a blank square. Your statements will be more memorable when other meeting attendees can see you.

If you need to turn off the video, either because of a poor connection, some commotion in the room, or a need for a quick break, give a short explanation via the chat feature. Then, go back on video as soon as you’re able.

Pro Tip: Keep your explanation for your departure pithy. “Sorry! Doorbell rang. Back in five” says it all. Be sure to honor what you say in chat and really do return in five minutes.

7. Plan Ahead Before Sharing Your Screen

Don’t be one of those people who makes everyone else wait as you click through folders in search of a document. That’s just poor video conferencing etiquette. If you know you’ll need to share a document or video on your screen, prepare by pulling it out of its folder and onto your desktop. Also, clean up the files and folders on your desktop to reduce clutter and facilitate easy access. Close other programs like chat, calendar notifications, and email. Disable pop-up notifications to ensure there’ll be no unforeseen distractions.

Be sure to remind the host before the meeting that you’ll need them to activate the screen-sharing function. Show courtesy once you’re finished by hitting “stop share” to return to the screen with participants.

Attend to the Pesky Details

8. Make Sure That Meetings Remain Right-Sized

With the easy accessibility of video conferencing, it can be tempting to extend the meeting invitation beyond the core group and include everyone peripherally involved in a project. But just as with in-person meetings, the more people involved, the more unwieldy the meeting becomes.

Use good judgment when asking others to sit through a video conference so that you don’t needlessly take up others’ time and so that participants can be fully engaged.

9. Remember to “Unmute” Before You Speak

Most of us are likely able to count on one hand the number of video conferences when someone didn’t have to be reminded, “You’re on mute!” Forgetting to unmute before speaking has become one of the most common missteps in video conferencing.[1]

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Show everyone your impeccable video-conferencing poise by managing your mute feature with flawless control.

10. Stay on Point to Keep the Meeting Length in Check

As with in-person meetings, an agenda with assigned time limits for discussions remains necessary to keep a meeting focused. Data shows, however, that video conferencing can actually reduce meeting time.[2] Reasons include the elimination of commuting time and the ability to screen share and annotate to keep everyone on task.

Additionally, side conversations are virtually impossible with video conferencing now that you can no longer have back-and-forth exchanges with the person beside you.

Pro Tip: If you’re running the meeting, let attendees know in advance the protocol for the chat feature. Is it okay for them to “chat among themselves” or not? (See point 11, as well.)

Talking Has a Time and a Place

11. Chat Appropriately

Just like side conversations or texting in an in-person meeting, the use of the chat feature during a video conference can be disrespectful unless it’s directed to all participants. Hence, it’s good video conferencing etiquette to mind your use of the chat.

At the start of the meeting, you may want to ask the host if it’s alright for participants to use the chat feature. This allows them to disable it if they choose. Used appropriately, it can be a helpful tool to clarify or amplify an earlier point once the conversation has moved on or to let the group know that you need to sign off early (and why).

12. Use the “Raise Hand” Feature to Avoid Interruptions

The slight lag in many video conferences can result in speaking over another person if you attempt to jump into a conversation. To avoid this awkward interruption, indicate when you have something to add to the discussion with the raise-your-hand feature that signals the host you would like to speak. This effective meeting management device makes video conferencing run more smoothly, especially with a large group, but it must be activated and monitored by the host.

Pro Tip: For meetings of six to ten people, sometimes the old-fashioned raising of your physical hand may be the best option. But it’s up to the meeting host. Ask them what they would prefer, and follow that.

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13. Don’t Record the Session or Take Photos Without Prior Permission

In this case, not sharing is caring. The “sharing culture” made popular through social media has little place in video conferencing. Before recording a meeting or capturing a screenshot of the participants, always ask for consent in advance from the full roster of attendees. Knowing that a video conference will be photographed or recorded could have a bearing on what others are willing to discuss.

Manage Yourself

14. Minimize Distractions

While de-activating audio and video features can keep distractions from affecting the other participants, you will need to manage noise and disruptions on your end to give your full attention to the meeting.

Move out of high-traffic zones in your home, keep your door closed, and ask family members to be considerate.

15. Save Snacking for Later

Save snacking for later—or earlier. Eating while on video conference is a no-no. Munching in front of the group while close to the camera—as you are when video conferencing—subjects the participants to an up-close and (too) personal view of your food consumption process.

However, it’s perfectly fine to sip quietly from a glass of water or cup of coffee or tea. If the meeting threatens to last for more than two hours, you may want to ask the host in advance to schedule a five-minute break at the halfway point.

Final Thoughts

Even though bosses are now beginning to ask workers to spend some of their workdays on-site, up to 80 percent will permit employees to work remotely at least part of the time, which means more video conferencing in your future.[3] Mastering these video conferencing etiquette tips will help you dial in—as well as dial back—your participation and demonstrate your unwavering level of engagement to the team.

Featured photo credit: Chris Montgomery via unsplash.com

Reference

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