Business Express is an online portal that covers the latest developments in the world of business and finance. From startups and entrepreneurship to mergers and acquisitions, Business Express provides reporting on the stories that matter most to business leaders and decision-makers.The website publishes news, press releases, opinion and advertorials on various financial organizations, products and services which are commissioned from various Companies, Organizations, PR agencies, Bloggers etc. These commissioned articles are commercial in nature. This is not to be considered as financial advice and should be considered only for information purposes. It does not reflect the views or opinion of our website and is not to be considered an endorsement or a recommendation. We cannot guarantee the accuracy or applicability of any information provided with respect to your individual or personal circumstances. Please seek Professional advice from a qualified professional before making any financial decisions. We link to various third-party websites, affiliate sales networks, and to our advertising partners websites. When you view or click on certain links available on our articles, our partners may compensate us for displaying the content to you or make a purchase or fill a form. This will not incur any additional charges to you. To make things simpler for you to identity or distinguish advertised or sponsored articles or links, you may consider all articles or links hosted on our site as a commercial article placement. We will not be responsible for any loss you may suffer as a result of any omission or inaccuracy on the website.
Mastering Negotiation Tactics A Strategic Approach to Success | Business Express

Mastering Negotiation Tactics: A Strategic Approach to Success

Mastering Negotiation Tactics: A Strategic Approach to Success

Written by Mike Giaimo, a Manager at the Gap Partnership

Many negotiators who are keen on honing their negotiation skills are often drawn to learning new tactics. The belief is that the more tactics they know, the more successful they will be. However, this can be a misconception. By focusing solely on tactics, they may overlook other equally essential negotiation skills and behaviours.

Indeed, tactics can support a successful negotiation. But when used inappropriately, they can harm relationships, diminish trust, and, in the worst-case scenario, negatively affect the negotiator’s integrity and respect.

Therefore, it’s crucial to approach negotiation tactics strategically. This involves understanding when and how to use different tactics, as well as recognizing the importance of other negotiation skills such as active listening, effective communication, and relationship building.

In the world of negotiations, tactics are just one piece of the puzzle. A well-rounded negotiator knows how to use tactics tactfully while also leveraging other skills to achieve successful outcomes. 

“Experience is not what happens to you; it’s what you do with what happens to you.” Aldous Huxley

In simple terms, tactics are used to gain power during a negotiation. This can be achieved with methods such as gaining information, creating time pressure or controlling the agenda. These tactics can be highly effective, but consider too the message it can give to your counter-party. Does it suggest you feel an imbalance of power to your detriment and are you signalling that to your counterpart? Equally, can you identify when tactics are being used against you and can you turn that knowledge to your advantage?

In short, the use of tactics must be meticulously planned as part of an overall negotiation strategy, and the decision to use them at all must be carefully assessed. 

Don't miss out on any breaking news or insightful opinions!
Subscribe to our free newsletter and stay updated on the go!

By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: . You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact

To consider the appropriateness of the use of tactics, it is important to first identify the type of negotiation you are involved in, and the circumstances that surround it. 

Many negotiation theorists argue that there are just two types of negotiation. Transactional (one-off) or distributive negotiation, and value creation (collaborative) negotiation. In a distributive negotiation, each side often adopts an extreme or fixed position knowing it will not be accepted, conceding as little as possible to reach a deal. In this scenario, each negotiator is aiming for the largest possible share and thus competitive behaviors are very commonly exhibited, driven by a desire to “win”. Emotions are often therefore high and both negotiators are frequently motivated to close the deal as quickly as possible and as a consequence, more concessions tend to be made. 

In these distributive circumstances tactics can be a valuable tool. As the bidders haggle over the win/lose negotiation, using tactics can help gain power and therefore advantage, which can reap rewards. 

Value creation negotiation however, requires relationship building, collaboration and a high level of trust. By it’s nature, it is likely to also involve more creative problem solving with the aim to achieve win-win and mutual gain. Typically, those negotiating in a collaborative context, negotiate regularly with their counterparts and invest significant time building up strong working relationships.

To introduce tactics to a value creation negotiation can therefore be a highly risky strategy. The use of a heavy-handed tactic can erode trust with your counterpart and undo months of relationship building at a stroke. Without trust, you are very much at risk of achieving a sub-optimal negotiation outcome. 

The decision on whether to use tactics or not is tied up closely with the level of relationship between the parties. People negotiate with people and as such, each party must appreciate, respect or at the very least understand the other party’s perspective. This “getting inside the other party’s head” helps to craft the way a negotiator communicates with the other party. Your communication behaviors create a perception that becomes reality.

The skilled negotiator uses tactics to complement and support their strategy in either distributive or value creation negotiations, choosing their tactics dependent on the individual circumstances. In The Negotiation Book, Steve Gates refers to his model, The Negotiation Clockface which identifies 8 types of negotiation, and makes the case that circumstances change the dynamics of a negotiation so much that no two negotiations can be viewed in the same way, and most importantly, should not be engaged in the same way. 

In summary, as negotiators, we must recognise the complex set of circumstances within which we are operating and only then should we begin to determine the appropriate tactic, considering the impact it will have to the immediate negotiation, but also to the long term relationship between us and our counterpart.

Recent Post: