Negotiating with a Stranger
To many negotiating is an awesome task shrouded in manipulation and connivance and plied by attorneys and politicians. The fact that often we have to negotiate it is with a stranger makes it that much more difficult. Trying to confront a car sales person, a banker or credit manager, a vender at the farmer's market, or any other person we run into on the street that has something we want can be very intimidating.
No wonder so many shy away from negotiate with a stranger. It is often easier to accept the terms being offered. This is no way to build confidence in standing up for your best interests. It is no way to live.
Get real! The birds do it. The bees do it. We all do it. Negotiate, that is! If we all do it why not consider these 5 Tips on negotiating with a stranger to improve how we interact with others? These tips on negotiating are designed to help you better understand the art of negotiations and improve your relationships with those you have to deal with every day.
Tip #1 When negotiating with a stranger approach the situation as you would any casual conversation. Take some time to get to know the person a bit. Try to identify some common interests you might have. The objective is to stand out in his or her mind from all the other strangers that pass by each day. By making this stranger feel a little more comfortable with you, you are subtly encouraging the person to deal with you as a person and not just as a source of another sale.
Tip #2 When negotiating with a stranger your primary objective is to be heard and understood. Learn to communicate effectively with strangers and you will improve your negotiating results. Communicating is more about being heard than speaking. If the other person cannot understand you all the talking you do won't change that. To be effective when negotiating requires that you have a clear message and the ability to deliver it in a fashion that a stranger can understand.
Tip #3 When negotiating with a stranger consider why the other person is resisting your proposal so much. Could it be that you are asking too much of them or offering to little in return. Negotiation is all about wants and needs. An effective negotiator will take the time necessary to separate the two. Wants are those nice-to-have extras that can be bartered for other concessions. Needs are those things that one must get to go through with any agreement. Try to view the issues from the other person's perspective to better understand the reason for their reluctance and then craft a new proposal that addresses their needs a bit better.
Tip #4 When negotiating with a stranger consider how you are handling the situation. Are you bullying the other person? Are you threatening them in some manner? Consider how you are approaching the negotiation in terms of words and mannerisms to make sure you aren't changing a negotiation into a fight. When people are backed into a corner they may agree to get out of it but it is likely they will break their agreement later if they have an opportunity.
Tip #5 When negotiating with a stranger make sure you know what your goal is. Make sure that the prize you are seeking is what you really want. Sometimes we simply become too embroiled in an argument or negotiation to see that we are investing far too much time chasing something of marginal value.
Negotiating with a stranger should be easier than with someone you know because you don't have to worry about the collateral damage to the relationship. You should feel free to press hard for what you want and challenge the other person. Doing so without becoming abusive should enable you to not only garner the fruits of your labor but also build relationships that may be beneficial in the future. These successes will instill confidence in your negotiating skills making future negotiations easier.