Negotiation: An Unpleasant but Necessary Skill
Negotiation is a skill that is often required in business, the workplace, and in life. For some individuals, negotiation is a source of discomfort, and they avoid it whenever possible. According to a Salary.com survey, one-fifth of all workers do not negotiate a salary when given a job offer. Nearly half of the participants in the survey said that they always feel nervous when negotiating salaries, and about 39% sometimes do. This apprehension towards negotiation is primarily because it is perceived as unpleasant. However, the ability to negotiate is essential, and individuals need to change their perception and learn to negotiate in a manner that benefits them and their clients.
Why is Negotiation So Hard?
Negotiation is not an easy skill to master due to several reasons. Firstly, it can be uncomfortable for individuals to ask for what they want. Imposter syndrome can make one feel undeserving of their position and reluctant to call attention to themselves by seeking a raise. Secondly, negotiation is a combination of several skills, including confidence, the ability to read other people, listening skills, problem-solving skills, emotional control, communication skills, teamwork, and ethics. These skills take time to develop and perfect. Finally, research indicates that there is a general lack of trust between parties involved in negotiations. Most people believe that the other party is only out to win, which creates mistrust and may ruin the negotiation process.
Why is Negotiation a Key Skill?
Negotiation is a critical skill that individuals need in various aspects of life, not just in negotiating salaries. It is necessary when working with colleagues on projects, negotiating vacation time with bosses, and dealing with clients on project specifications, deadlines, and costs. Being able to negotiate well is fundamental to getting what one wants in different situations. People who have mastered this skill gain confidence in other areas of life and business because they know how to ask for what they need, and their clients or business associates feel comfortable negotiating with them.
How to Improve Your Negotiating Skills
Individuals can improve their negotiating skills by changing their mindset. It is essential to view negotiation as a relationship rather than a battle where one party wins and the other loses. Negotiation is a process where individuals can collaborate and communicate to reach a mutual agreement. It is important to know that one does not have to get everything they want to make the negotiation process successful.
When negotiating for oneself or a business, it is crucial to understand the company’s culture. This understanding helps one know how others have approached similar situations in the past. Additionally, it is helpful to identify a mentor or coach who is excellent at negotiating and can offer guidance, refine one’s style, and build confidence. Proper planning, researching ahead of a meeting, and going in with an open but clear mind about one’s goals makes it easy to negotiate strongly, leading to happier clients.
In conclusion, negotiation is an unpleasant but necessary skill that individuals need in different aspects of life. The ability to negotiate successfully is a critical skill that individuals need to master to ensure that they can get what they want in various life situations. Changing one’s mind-set towards negotiation, understanding your company’s culture, and having a mentor or coach are some of the steps that individuals need to take to improve their negotiating skills.