How to Negotiate Effectively
May 3, 2016
Sometimes, When Negotiating, Asking Questions Causes a Defensive Response
Clearly if your questions sound aggressive an aggressive response is almost bound to follow. This will undoubtedly stall your negotiation and that clearly isn’t in your interest. It also means you are no longer in control.
And if you’d wanted to delay things there are better ways of doing this without stalling things totally. You could just ask for a comfort break!
So if you need to make comments, ask questions or even disagree with the other side, speak with a quiet voice.
Use a soft voice and tonality. This soft tonality will not sound threatening to the listener. It will not cause a defensive reaction. There will be no fight or flight response generated.
In one sense the tone of your voice is much more important than the words used.
Some negotiators claim that tone is three times powerful than the words. I’m not sure of the exact figure but it certainly is really important to keep your voice under control if you want to keep control of the negotiations.
So instead of saying in a loud voice, “That will never work” use some of the techniques mentioned below.
For example if you phrase the question in the right way you sound much more reasonable. So you might say, “I need to understand the price a bit better”. and follow it with comments like “And how would that work?” and “I’m having a problem seeing how that would work in our current situation”. Keep probing and the reasons it will not work will become apparent to the other side.
Gentle questions in a gentle voice work very well.
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