Last week, Roar Thun Wægger was invited to conduct negotiation training on Spitzbergen Island. Do you know where this is? It’s at 78 degrees north – not too far from the north pole!
This area in the Barents Sea and the Arctic Ocean has been the subject of extensive negotiations for 40 years on maritime delimitation between Norway and the Soviet Union & Russia.
Was that a successful negotiation?
Dale Carnegie defined success as “getting what you want”. When Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg signed the treaty in 2010 he said “The solution appears to be good and balanced and will benefit both countries”. For me, it sounds as if Norway got what it wanted, so a successful negotiation closing after 40 years.
The topic in my negotiation training on Spitzbergen Island was “The Art of Getting What YOU Want”.
How do we become more successful? We have a negotiation strategy in our organization. Do you have one?
Many organizations have a sales-, marketing-, procurement-, and recruitment strategy, etc., etc., but many do not have a negotiation strategy.
In the book Built to Win by Lawrence Susskind and Hallam Movius, they suggest steps you can take to implement negotiation skills in your organization.
Here are four simple steps you can take:
First, build a coalition – Identify internal obstacles to better negotiations, and unite with colleagues to organize a more effective system. Leaders will take notice.
Secondly, model best practices – share what you know about preparation, creating value and claiming value, BATNA and WATNA, and how to implement deals with your colleagues. You are creating a system. A good way to create an effective system is to run negotiation training. If that’s not possible in your organization your modeling of effective negotiation behavior could motivate leaders to follow the initiative.
Third, stress outcome – CEOs and CFOs embrace great outcomes. Show them the connection between better negotiation awareness and skills and specific, desired outcomes, including short-term earnings and an increased chance of contract renewals. When the whole team (negotiation, sales, or procurement team) embraces the same system of effective negotiation strategy the C-suit will become more willing to invest in negotiation training to identify opportunities for further improvement.
Lastly, point out inconsistencies – the C-suit need to know if current behavior and procedures are preventing the negotiation, sales, or procurement team from using what they’ve learned in negotiation skills training.
After a WNI negotiation skill training for a sales team, the feedback from the manager was:
“The training has had a transformative impact on our negotiation skills and overall sales performance. One of the most remarkable outcomes of the workshop has been the significant increase in our sales results. With the newfound negotiation framework, our sales team now approaches each negotiation with more clarity and purpose. We are better equipped to understand our customers’ needs, effectively communicate our value proposition, and create mutually beneficial agreements”.
They knew where to go when they wanted to become more successful!