Five Types Of Power In Negotiation

There are various types of power that you can develop and use, either individually or together, to influence and persuade the other party in any negotiation. The more important the issue to be negotiated, the more time you should take to consider how you can use one or more of these elements of power to strengthen yourself in your position.

Number one. Power of Indifference. the party, who appears to be the most indifferent to whether or not the negotiation succeeds, often has power. If the other party wants more for the negotiation to succeed than you do, you should always appear slightly detached and indifferent in a negotiation, as though you don\’t really care one way or another.
Number two. Power of Authority when you have an impressive title, or you look as though you have the authority to make decisions. This image alone often intimidates the other person and enables you to get a better deal. A powerful image can really help to convey authority dress excellently in every respect. Dress with power and strong conservative colors, looking like the president of a major corporation. When you look like a million dollars, the other party, especially if he or she is not as well dressed, will often be intimidated into giving you a better deal or will be much more responsive to your demands.
Number three. The Power of Expertise. The power of expertise comes from your making it clear that you are extremely well-informed on the subject under negotiation. A person who is perceived as an expert in any situation has power over those who do not feel as knowledgeable, and the more research and preparation you have done in advance, the more knowledgeable you sound.
Number four. The Power of Empathy. Human beings are predominantly emotional in everything that they do and say. In negotiations, a person who feels that the other person empathizes with him or her and his or her situation is a much more likely person to be flexible and accommodating in the negotiation. The popular image of the tough-talking negotiator is largely fictitious. Every study of top negotiators shows that they are highly empathetic, low keyed, solution-oriented, and pleasant individuals to do business with. Good negotiators are usually very nice people. They make it clear from the beginning that they really care about finding a solution that all parties can live with.
Number five. The Power of Rewarding or Punishing. When other parties perceive that you have the capacity to help them or hurt them. They\’re usually far more cooperative than if they don\’t feel that you have this power. With each of these five powers, your choice in negotiating is either to be influenced by or to have influence over the other party. The more you can develop and use these powers to your advantage in a negotiation, the more persuasive and effective you will be, prior to your next major purchase, sale, or negotiation of any kind. Review the forms of power described here and think about how you can use them to gain an advantage. Write out and discuss your thinking with someone else to make sure that you\’re completely prepared. Practice the power of indifference in every negotiation as a matter of course. When you appear unconcerned or uninterested in the success of the negotiation, you\’ll often unnerve the other party and induce concessions from him or her before you\’ve even taken a position or made an offer.
The Principle of Desire. This says that the person who most wants the negotiation to succeed has the least bargaining power. The more either you or the other party wants to make the purchase or sale, the less power that person has.
Skilled negotiators developed the art of appearing polite but uninterested as if they have many other options, all of which are as attractive as the auction being negotiated.

  • Rule. No matter how badly you wanted, you should appear neutral and detached.

The more important it is to you, the more important it is for you to appear unemotional, unaffected, and unreadable. Don\’t smile or appear interested in any way. An attitude of mild boredom is best.

  • Rule. The more you can make the other party want, the better deal you can get.

This, of course, is the essence of successful selling; focus all your efforts on building value and pointing out the benefits the other party will enjoy from the purchase or sale. Desire is the critical element. Before you begin negotiating, list all the benefits of dealing with you. Organize the list by priority from the most persuasive benefit to the least persuasive. Mention these key benefits in the course of the negotiation can be alert to the reaction of the other party. Always be polite and friendly during the negotiation. This makes it easier for you to change your mind, to make concessions, and to compromise without your ego getting in the way. It also makes it easier for the other party to make concessions and agree at the appropriate time.

The Principle of Reciprocity says that people have a deep subconscious need to reciprocate for anything that is done to or for them. This principle of reciprocity is one of the most powerful of all determinants of human behavior. When someone does something nice for us, we want to pay him or her back to reciprocate. We want to be even.
Because of this, we seek an opportunity to do something nice in return. This principle is the basis of the Law of Contract, as well as the glue that holds most human relationships together. This principle of reciprocity is most active in negotiating about concessions. Ideally, every concession in a negotiation should be matched by a concession of some kind by the other party. The giving and getting of concessions is often the very essence of a negotiation.

  • Rule. The first party to make a concession is the party that wants the deal more.

You must therefore avoid being the first one to make a concession, even a small concession. Instead, be friendly and interested, but remain silent. The first person to make a concession will usually be the person who makes additional concessions. Even without reciprocal concessions, most purchasers or sellers are aware of this. They recognize that early concessions are a sign of eagerness and are prepared to take advantage of it. So be careful.

  • Rule every concession you make in a negotiation should be matched by an equal or greater concession by the other party.

If the other party asks for a concession, you may give it, but never without asking for something else in return. If you don\’t request a reciprocal concession, the concession that you give will be considered to have no value and will not help you as the negotiation proceeds. If a person asks for a better price, suggests that it might be possible, but you will have to either decrease the quantity or lengthen the delivery dates, even if the concession is of no cost or value to you. You must make it appear valuable and important to the other party, or it will not help you in the negotiation.

  • Rule. Small concessions on small issues enable you to ask for large concessions on large issues.

One of the very best negotiating strategies is to be willing to give in order to get when you make every effort to appear reasonable by conceding on issues that are unimportant to you. You put yourself in an excellent field position to request an equal or greater concession. Later use the principle of reciprocity to your advantage before negotiating. Make a list of the things that the other party might want and decide upon what concessions you are willing to give to get what you want. This preparation strengthens your negotiating ability considerably.

The Walk Away Principle. This says that you never know the final price and terms until you get up and walk away. You may negotiate back and forth, haggling over the various details of the deal for a long time, but you never really know the best deal you can get until you make it clear that you are prepared to walk out of the negotiation completely.

  • Rule, the power is on the side of the person who can walk away without flinching.

If you get up and walk out, be pleasant, low-key, and polite. Thank the other person for his or her time and consideration. Leave the door open so that you can enter back into the negotiation with no loss of face.

  • Rule. Walking out of a negotiation is just another way of negotiating.

Some of the very best negotiators, both nationally and internationally, are extremely adept at getting up and walking out. They will leave the room. Leave the building. Leave the city and even the country, if necessary, to strengthen their positions and increase their perceived power in a negotiation. A common tactic when teams are negotiating is for one or more of the key players on one team to get up angrily, storm out of the room, and vow never to come back. However, at least one player will stay behind and then seek some way to make peace with his or her partners and bring them back into the discussion. The remaining party will be friendly and accommodating as if he or she is really on the side of the other party. This tactic is very common in labor-management negotiations and in international relations. Before you enter into a negotiation, be prepared to get up and walk out. If you\’re negotiating as a team, make sure that all players know about this tactic and when to use it. At the appropriate moment, you will all stand up and head for the door. This will often completely confuse and disorient the other party or parties. Be prepared to cut off a negotiation. The very minute you get an unacceptable offer or condition, close up your briefcase, thank the other person for his or her time, and head for the door. The better you get good at walking away, the better the deals you will get.

The Principle of Finality says that no negotiation is ever final. It often happens once a negotiation is complete. One of the parties thinks of something or becomes aware of an issue that has not been satisfactorily resolved. Maybe circumstances change between the signing of the agreement and its implementation. In any case, one of the parties is not happy with the results of the negotiation. One party feels that he or she has lost. This is not acceptable if the two parties are anticipating, negotiating, and entering into future deals in the future.

  • Rule. If you\’re not happy with the agreement, ask to reopen the negotiation.

Most people are reasonable. Most people want you to be happy with the terms of the negotiated agreement, especially if the terms are to be carried out over a long time.

If you find that you\’re not happy with the particular term or condition, don\’t be reluctant to go back to the other person and ask for something different. Think of reasons why it would be beneficial to the other person to make these changes. Don\’t be afraid to point out that you\’re not happy with this situation and that you would like to change the agreement so that it is more fair and equitable to you.

  • Rule. Use zero-based thinking on a regular basis by asking yourself if I could negotiate this arrangement over again, would I agree to the same terms?

Be willing to examine your past decisions objectively. Be prepared to ask yourself if I had not made this agreement knowing what I now know. Would I enter into it?

This ability to engage in zero-based thinking to get your ego out of the way and to look honestly and realistically at your ongoing situation is the mark of the superior negotiator. Review your current situation, and especially those ongoing arrangements with which you are dissatisfied in any way. Think about how you could reopen the negotiation and what sort of terms and conditions would be more satisfactory to you.

Whenever you experience stress or unhappiness with an agreement, or whenever you feel that the other party is dissatisfied, take the initiative to revisit the agreement and find a way to make it more satisfying for both parties. Think long-term.

To summarize, negotiating is a normal and natural part of life. You owe it to yourself to become very skilled at it. As with any skill, the key to excellence is to practice at every opportunity. Make it a game.

Ask for what you really want. Ask for better prices, better terms, better conditions. Better delivery. Better everything.

Realize that you can save yourself the equivalent of months and even years of hard work by learning how to become an excellent negotiator.

And you can. If you think you can, you can. If you just ask.