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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

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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Last Updated on January 21, 2020

How to Increase Work Productivity: 9 Ground Rules

How to Increase Work Productivity: 9 Ground Rules

We all have those days when completing our assigned tasks seems beyond reach. With the temptation of social media, mobile games, and the internet in general—not to mention the constant bustle of people in the office—it’s easy to fall prey to disruptions and distractions at work.

So, what can we do about it? How to be productive at work?

While we don’t have a foolproof system that can completely eliminate disturbances and diversions, we do have 9 ground rules that can be applied to help give your productivity levels a boost.

Keep reading to find out our tips on work productivity.

What Does It Mean to Be Productive?

How to be productive at work?” is the age-old question plaguing employees and employers alike around the world. Regardless of where you work and what you do, everyone is always looking for new ways to be more efficient and effective.

But what does being productive actually entail?

Completing more tasks on your list or working longer hours doesn’t necessarily mean you’re being more productive. It just means you’re more busy, and productivity shouldn’t be confused with busyness.

Productivity means achieving effective results in as short amount of time as possible, leaving you with more time to enjoy freely.

It involves working smarter, not harder. It means refining processes, speeding up workflows, and reducing the chances of interruptions.

Productivity is best achieved when looking at your current way of working, identifying the bottlenecks, flaws, and hindrances, and then finding ways to improve.

9 Ground Rules on How to Be Productive at Work

1. Avoid Multitasking

Multitasking can give the impression that more tasks can be accomplished as you’re doing multiple things at once. However, the opposite is true.

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Research has shown that attempting to do several things at the same time takes a toll on productivity and that shifting between tasks can cost up to 40 percent of someone’s time.[1] That’s because your focus and concentration is constantly hindered due to having to switch between tasks.

If you have a lot of tasks on your plate, determine your priorities and allocate enough time for each task. That way you can work on what’s urgent first and have enough time to complete the rest of your tasks.

2. Turn off Notifications

According to a Gallup poll, more than 50 percent of US smartphone owners admit to checking their phones a few times an hour.[2]

Switching off your phone—or at least your notifications—during work hours is a good way to prevent you from checking your phone all the time.

The same applies to your computer. If you have the privilege of accessing social media on your work desktop, switch off the notifications on there.

Another good tip is to logout from your social media accounts. Therefore when you feel the urge to check it, you might be swayed because your page isn’t so easily accessible.

3. Manage Interruptions

There are certain disruptions in the office that are unavoidable such as your manager requesting a quick meeting or your colleague asking for assistance. In order to deal with this, your best approach is to know how to handle interruptions like a pro.

Be proactive and inform the people around you of your need to focus. Turn your status on as “busy/unavailable” on your work chat app.

If you’re on a deadline, let your colleagues know that you need to concentrate and would really appreciate not being interrupted for the moment, or even work from home if that’s a feasible option for you.

By anticipating and having a plan in place to manage them, this will minimize your chances of being affected by interruptions.

4. Eat the Frog

Mark Twain once famously said that:

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“if it’s your job to eat a frog, it’s best to do it first thing in the morning. And if it’s your job to eat two frogs, it’s best to eat the biggest one first.”

What this basically means is that you should get your biggest, most urgent task out of the way first.

We all have that big, important task that we don’t want to do but know we have to do because it holds the biggest consequence if we don’t complete it.

Eat the frog is a productivity technique that encourages you to do your most important, most undesirable task first. Completing this particular task before anything else will give you a huge sense of accomplishment. It will set the ball rolling for the rest of the day and motivate you to eagerly complete your other tasks.

5. Cut Down on Meetings

Meetings can use up a lot of time, which is time that can be used to do something useful.

You have to wait for everyone to arrive, then after the pleasantries are out of the way, you can finally get stuck into it. And sometimes, it may take a whole hour to iron out one single issue.

The alternative? Don’t arrange a meeting at all. You’ll be surprised at how many things can be resolved through an email or a quick phone call.

But that doesn’t mean you should eliminate meetings altogether. There are certain circumstances where face-to-face discussions and negotiations are still necessary. Just make sure you weigh up the options prior.

If it’s just information sharing, you’re probably better off sending an email; but if brainstorming or in-depth discussion is required, then an in-person meeting would be best.

6. Utilize Tools

Having the right tools to work with is crucial as you’re only really as good as the resources you have at your disposal. Not only will you be able to complete tasks as efficiently as possible, but they can streamline processes. Said processes are essential to a business as they manage tasks, keep employees connected, and hold important data.

If you’re the manager or business owner, ensure your team has the right tools in place.

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And if you’re an employee and think the tools you currently have to work with aren’t quite up to par, let your manager know. A good team leader understands the significance of having the right tools and how it can impact employee productivity.

Some examples of tools that could be used:

Communication
  • Slack for team chat and collaboration.
  • Samepage for video conference software.
  • Zendesk for customer service engagement.
Task Management
  • Zenkit for task and project collaboration.
  • Wunderlist for listing your to-do’s.
  • Wekan for an open source option.
Database Management
Time Tracking
  • Clockify for a free tracker.
  • TMetric for workspace integrations.
  • TimeCamp for attendance and productivity monitoring.

You can also take a look at these Top 10 Productivity Tools to Help You Achieve 10x More in Less Time.

7. Declutter and Organize

Having a disorganized and cluttered workspace can limit your ability to focus. According to researchers, physical clutter can negatively impact your ability to concentrate and take in information.[3] Which is why keeping your work environment well ordered and clutter-free is important.

Ensure you have your own system of organization so you know what to do when the paperwork starts to pile up.

Being organized will also ensure that you know where to find the appropriate stationery, tools, or documents when you need it. A US study reveals that the average worker can waste up to one week a year looking for misplaced items.[4]

Here’s a useful guide to help you declutter and organize: How to Declutter Your Life and Reduce Stress (The Ultimate Guide)

8. Take Breaks

Taking regular breaks is essential for maintaining productivity at work. Working in front of a computer can lead to a sedentary lifestyle which can place you at a higher risk of heart disease, diabetes, and obesity. Even a 30 second microbreak can increase your productivity levels up to 30 percent.

As well as your physical health, breaks are also crucial for your mental and emotional wellbeing. That’s because your brain is like a muscle, the more it works without a break, the easier it is for it to get worn out.

Ensuring you actually take your breaks can prevent you from suffering from decision fatigue. It can also help boost creativity.

Take a look at this article and learn why you should start scheduling time for breaks: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

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9. Drink Water

Although we know we should, it’s easy to forget to drink enough water during the working day.

Many of us turn to tea or coffee for the caffeine hit to keep us going. However, like taking breaks, drinking water is essential for maintaining productivity levels at work. It’s simple and effective.

Not drinking enough water can lead to dehydration and also headaches, tiredness, and weight gain.

A good tip to avoid dehydration is to keep a water bottle at your desk as it can serve as a reminder to constantly drink water.

If you find the taste of water a little bland, add some fruit such as cucumber or lemon to give it a better taste.

You can also get more ideas on how to drink more water here: How to Drink More Water (and Why You Should)

The Bottom Line

The preceding 9 ground rules on work productivity aren’t the be-all, end-all. You and the company you work for may have other tips on how productivity is best increased and maintained.

After all, it’s something that can be perceived differently depending on the exact job and work environment.

In saying that, however, the 9 ground rules serve as a good foundation for anyone finding themselves succumbing to disruption and distraction, and are looking for ways to overcome them.

A good tip to keep in mind is that change doesn’t happen overnight. Start small and be consistent. If you slip up, just dust yourself off and try again.

Developing habits happens gradually, so as long as you keep up with it, you’ll soon start to notice the changes you’ve been making and eventually enjoy the fruits of your labor.

More About Boosting Productivity

Featured photo credit: Cathryn Lavery via unsplash.com

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