Let’s consider why so many people hate to negotiate. This negative attitude stems from the perception that a negotiation is a contest, which can’t be won unless someone else loses. But the thought that someone has to lose can produce anxiety because it means that the loser could be you. Some people become consumed by the fear of losing, thinking about what might happen if things don’t go their way. Before they know it, their stomach is tied up in knots and they feel like they are going to be sick.
Some people believe that Donald Trump is the consummate negotiator. Trump represents the old-style, in-your-face approach to dealmaking. I prefer to use Peter Falk’s classic TV detective Columbo as a better role model for a negotiator.
Why? Columbo is known for keeping a leash on his own ego. He asks questions, listens to others, and solves problems. Columbo is a reasonable man with a strong sense of humility. Unlike Trump, his objective is uncovering the truth, not winning a war of egos.
In place of the Trump model, I propose a collaborative approach to negotiation in which both sides can consider themselves winners. This eliminates the anxiety over the outcome and allows us to enjoy the process. Contrary to popular belief, negotiation is not really about winning, it is about collaborating….Continue reading at InspireMeToday.com.
Ed is a negotiation expert and the author of Negotiation Boot Camp: How to Resolve Conflict, Satisfy Customers, and Make Better Deals.
Photo Credit: Max Elman