Archive for: May, 2023

Making Impressive Presentations

May 31 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

As a project manager, you are expected to present your project plans to management at the earliest opportune time if you want support for your projects. Even if the project is a directive from top management, you are still expected to present your plans on how to accomplish the directive. This is a standard business process and most, if not all industries follow this practice.

A Gantt chart is one option in presenting your plans. It is an option which many project managers choose to use as part of their presentation techniques. They might start on a general high level plan showing major activities and milestones and the time frame to complete these milestones. One basic reason for this approach is the visualization effect makes it easy for people to follow the steps required for the project.  As the project manager explains each milestone, he brings into the picture the resource (people and equipment) and the costs involved. At times, they embed the resources and costs as part of the bar. The beauty about this approach is management and stakeholders can easily grasp the project requirements and see the milestones within the project when they will need more resources and more capital. Normally, a project does not need a continuous stream of resources all the time. However, there will be activities when more resources are needed and additional capital is expected. Project managers try to balance the requirements so it becomes a steady flow and not too jagged with peaks and valleys. It is easier to manage a project where the resources and costs are evenly distributed throughout the project. However, in reality, that scenario is difficult to achieve. Limit the activities to relevant milestones and compress the time line to fit into a regular screen. For instance, if the project will take one year, display the time units as months or even as quarters.  The intention is to keep the audience focused on the graphic representation on a single screen. If the Gantt chart has to extend over several screens, you might confuse them and yourself when switching screens back and forth. As questions come up during the presentation, you may find yourself moving back and forth on the Gantt chart in an attempt to clarify the response. Some managers circumvent the number of activities and time units by making the diagram smaller until it can fit on the screen. Be careful that the audience does not have a hard time reading the text displayed on the screen.

Another technique involves printing out the Gantt chart and taping the pages until the entire Gantt chart is pieced together. Providing the members with several copies of printed Gantt charts may resolve the issue of fitting the Gantt chart on a single screen or paper. The disadvantage is you might lose the audience as they mull through the different sections of the Gantt chart. Limiting your Gantt chart to the activities and time line suited for the audience appears to be the more appropriate approach. When you present your project to your team members, more detailed may be required. You can still limit the activities and time line by presenting the tasks on a per milestone basis. There are ways and means to chop the Gantt chart so that only the relevant matters are presented to the various audiences. This is tedious if you need to do it manually but nowadays computer software such as Visio, PowerPoint and Microsoft Project are available for an impressive presentation.  Updates of the Gantt chart can be done easily so your presentation is almost always current. Take a look at the available computer software in the marketplace and assess which would be most useful for your presentations.

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Presents, Presence, and Being Present Equals Success

May 31 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Present and presence are two words that sound the same but have different meaning. We all love presents. Presents are gifts we receive or give to others. Presence is the way we project ourselves or how others see us. Presents are tangible. Presence is felt internally by us and by others. Both contribute to our happiness and success.

Are you using the presents you were given? It is very uncomfortable to go through life trying to be the square peg and fit yourself into the round hole. God gave each of us unique gifts. These are his presents to us. Sometimes people go through life and never open the presents he gave them. I don’t want you to be that person.

I remember growing up being shamed for wanting to open a present. This prevented me from using that gift and honing that talent. Parents mean well when teaching their children to be modest and humble. They mean well when they teach their children to be practical and to operate in a safe zone. But, these are also limiting behaviors.

In order to be a success and use the gifts given to you by God you must be willing to be bold and operate from a place that is not always safe. You must be willing to take a risk. God has given you many presents in the form of your unique talents and he wants you to use them. You owe it to not only yourself, but also to mankind, to hone your unique talents and share them with others.

Presence is the way you project yourself. When you walk into a room do heads turn? When you speak do people listen? How do others feel when they are around you? Are they scared and on edge, happy, or at peace? The way you project yourself is done internally. You are often not even aware of your presence.

To be successful you must be aware of your presence. There are times you need to walk into the room and own it. You need to exude confidence and mastery. There will be others times when you need to tone it down and be almost invisible. You don’t want your coworkers or employees scared of you, but you do want them to respect you. You want them to know that you are someone they can trust.

It takes someone less than 10 seconds to look at you and sum up an opinion about you. The way you dress, your personal grooming, and your body language all contribute to the opinion the person forms about and your skills. The internal vibe you give off can be positive or negative. Do you make people feel uncomfortable, less than, or inferior by the way you speak or look at them? Are you the person that has an uncanny ability to make people relax and feel good about themselves?

Being present is the third contributor to success. You must be cognizant of how you show up each day. Are you focused and free from distractions? Much of the day is wasted by mismanaging time because the person is not focused and present. Business owners often find themselves operating as an employee instead of making decisions that can grow the business. Job seekers waste away the day worrying about their outdated skills instead of sharpening their skills by practicing.

When you use the presents you were given, are aware of your presence, and ensure you are being present each day, you will greatly improve your chances of being a success at whatever you choose to do.

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How to Give a Good Presentation

May 30 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

A good presentation is a presentation that is interactive, communicative, and uses amazing visualization technique. It is related to the definition of presentation itself. Presentation is a way to explain something (idea, opinion, case, solution, or information) to a group of people. To do that, you can use a technology help or not. To give a good presentation, you need to have intelligence in communication. Indeed, delivering something into a group of audience is not that easy. It could be more difficult if the audience is from various circles and social strata.

With existence of information technology, there is actually a part of the process of the presentation can be overcome. Visualization techniques are particularly helpful in understanding the substance of the presentation. But nevertheless, presenter is still an actor of presentation success. Performance, expression and knowledge are the ‘attractiveness’ factors of presenter that must be qualified. To get that, the presenter should do exercise and the exercise is simply to do presentation as many as possible anywhere and anytime.

When delivering presentation, make sure that you are an actor which is seen by people from different parts of the earth. You become the center of world attention when it is! Thus, keep your steps and your breath. Synchronize your face with a natural and charming smile. Do not remember the tips or the theories of presentation that are written in the books. Forget everything. What exists in your mind is how you can become a star at that time.

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Why Business Owners Need To Hire A Program Presenter

May 29 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Events and other types of programs are important for businesses in order to achieve their goals like generating leads, showcasing their products and services, and improving their profits. However, in order to obtain these benefits, it is important for business owners to hire a reliable program presenter. By doing so, business owners can achieve these benefits during their event.

Manage the event properly

First and foremost, hiring a program presenter allows business owners to manage their event properly. Of course, there are numerous activities business owners need to deal with during an event. Hence, they do not have sufficient time in dealing with a single issue. Luckily, reliable program presenters can provide them with a reliable plan that can manage all their needs properly.

Avoid unexpected issues during the event

Program presenters can also prevent unexpected issues from happening during the event. For instance, in case that you experience some technical difficulties during the event, program presenters have backup plans to ensure that the guests are entertained all throughout. As a result, you can fix these issues efficiently and continue your event with ease.

Professionally promote your brand and product

One of the reasons business owners organize a program is to showcase their services and products. Unfortunately, this goal cannot be accomplished if there is no one who can present your products or services professionally. With the help of program presenters, they can showcase your products properly to your target audience. Apart from promoting your brand verbally, there are also presenters who can help you promote your products on paper. This is possible since they can write articles about your event, which you can publish online. Hence, you can still attract potential clients even if your event is finished.

Entice guests efficiently

With the help of program presenters, you can also entice guests efficiently. Surely, organizing an event is already a huge task. Enticing guests to go to your event is another bigger problem. So, make sure that you hire reliable presenters who can ensure that your guests are satisfied during your event.

Help improve business reputation

Lastly, presenters can also help improve your business reputation. During an event, business owners need to make sure that they can promote their brand in a good way in order to attract potential clients. Fortunately, presenters can do the job easily, which can help you and your business.

With all these amazing services, business owners are rest assured that their events can help them improve their business promotion.

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The Role of Technology in the Success of Your Presentation

May 27 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Whether you are a student or a professional, knowing how to give an interesting and effective presentation is a skill that is undoubtedly important. If you want to grab the attention and interest of your potential client or audience, then having a good content is simply not good enough, you should be able to present them in a way that can hold their interest. Learning the most basic presentation skills and understanding their importance is a must for both seasoned and beginner in presentation. Whether you are trying to pitch for an idea or presenting a lecture in class, the quality of the presentation is a big determining factor of the presentation’s success. Fortunately, with today’s modern technology, we have now many available electronics hardware and software that can considerably improve the quality of the presentation.

In a presentation, visual aids are not only considered to be useful, in some cases they are an absolute requirement. As far as presentation software goes, definitely the most popularly utilized by millions of user is Microsoft PowerPoint. It is a program that is bundled with Microsoft’s Office suite. It is arguably one of the most dynamic tools that is used in many presentations. PowerPoint is very popular because of how easy it is to learn the program, but it has enough flexibility to appeal even to the most advanced user. PowerPoint is highly customizable, so no matter what are your needs when it comes to your presentation, this software can definitely provide and you will only be limited by your own creativity.

In the subject of presentation, even if you have a high quality presentation material and content, then it is meaningless if you can’t communicate them effectively to the audience. When it comes to the goal of communicating your presentation to the audience, then nothing beats a projector device such as a Rear Projection Screen or LCD projector. As it was mentioned before, visual aids is important in grabbing and maintaining the attention of your audience. A projector device projects everything that is going on in a computer screen or laptop. Gone are the days when you need to use cue cards or cardboard, a projector provides such benefits and made a lot more convenient for the user. Projectors works usually on a “plug and play” interface so they are absolutely easy to set-up and use. High quality projectors are able to project video displays in the best resolution possible in order to make sure the best clarity for the audience.

Other multimedia devices that can be used for presentation includes whiteboards and touch screen monitors. So if you are planning to have a presentation soon, make sure that you take advantage of the technology that is available to you. Doing so can considerably aid in improving the overall quality of the presentation and provides you with the best chance that the whole thing would be a success. Just keep in mind that high quality content and equipment is useless if you do not properly prepare for the presentation, so be sure that you have enough preparation.

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Negotiating – A Global Challenge

May 24 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Negotiation is an exchange of different objectives with the goal of finding a common ground for a mutually acceptable compromise; it is something that should be workable for both parties. Anything beyond that is not negotiation, rather a flaunting of might or arrogant forcefulness, a kind of desensitization of respect. Negotiation requires mutual respect not mutual trust. Trust is something that is gained through negotiation not integral to it. Trust comes through negotiation and interaction. If we feel that we should trust our opponent from the beginning then we are being trite.

When talking negotiations, most people from North America would likely consider themselves to be upright in their interactions. This is good, when negotiating amongst ourselves or with those who hold the same core values and ideals as we do. But, in this world not all people hold the same core values and ideals. We can look to the Middle East and conflicts taking place in the world today to realize that not everyone thinks same.

Perhaps we can see a thread of puritan ideals, when trying to realize a world in which everyone should be “good” and at the same time a good that has been dictated by our cultural values. How can we describe “good” in a way that crosses all cultures? I ask this because I was fortunate to live twenty years of my life in a culture that is quite different from that into which I was born, a culture where I learned that “good” can mean something much different than what I was taught as a child.

In “The Art of War“, by the classical Chinese strategist “Sun Zi“, he talks of understanding as a strategy. He said:

Know yourself and know your adversary and you will win one hundred battles,

Know yourself and know not your adversary and you will win fifty battles…

The first half of the challenge here is to understand yourself; what are your core values, your ideas, your desires, and goals. If you are able to achieve this, he said, you will be successful half of the time. The second half of the challenge is to understand your opponent; what are their core values, their ideals, their desires, and goals. This may mean knowing what makes them happy or what makes them sad; being able to understand their interpretation of “good”. If we simply take for granted that they hold the same overall ideals as we do, we may find ourselves heading down a road for failure.

Negotiation is strongly influenced and affected by culture base. This base is built on upbringing; comprised of religious, family, and social ideals. Consider if you grew up in a country on the other side of the earth? Would you not have values and ideals different from those you have here? Therefore your reality would be much different from the environment in which you were raised; you would be a much different person.

People tend to cling to what they know and to what they feel comfortable with, as does anyone who has not learned the second part of Sun Zi’s lesson; learning about success thorough understanding.

While living in China, I had to learn to accept things that were sometimes unacceptable in light of my cultural values and ideals. Later, when I was able to look beyond my own limitations, I began to see opportunities and possibilities that never occurred to me before. This took years, and many a frustrated night contemplating and trying to understand. Eventually, I realized that the problem was me; it was in the way I was thinking. I was thinking the way I was taught to think. However that was not necessarily the way the people I was interacting with were thinking.

Once I began accepting the things that seemed to go against my grain, life began to happen more smoothly. I started to find myself succeeding at what I was trying to do. I found that resistance because of cultural biases to difference, and stubbornness in accepting things that I viewed as objectionable, were causing frustration and failure.

The Chinese like to present gifts to people in order to get things accomplished. At first, in order to achieve my goals, I was faced with having to do this. I felt that I could never follow through. It felt like I was bribing someone. That was something that went against my core values. However, once I got beyond the cultural blockage and was able to accept it as the way things worked within a different culture, the outcomes changed and I didn’t see myself as a bad person because the action didn’t change who I was at the core. It wasn’t easy to transform ideals that were so deeply rooted within my psyche. It took time and patience, but it brought me freedom and success in my daily interactions in a different culture. Adapting to the environment doesn’t mean that we become bad people, it is simply a strategy to become successful in an environment much different from our own.

In your mind, envision yourself at a negotiation table with two Chinese businessmen. You know what you want, you know what you have to offer, and in essence you know yourself. From the beginning you are transparent and honest. You are acting in a way you feel is right. You put everything you have on the table, announcing “This is all I have to offer.”

Suddenly, the Chinese counterparts bring something new to the table, but they had assured you earlier that they had nothing new to offer.

Would you consider them dishonest? Would you see them as lying? But now, stop and ask yourself how they would view you as a negotiator when you are unable to bring anything new to the table. Will they view you as being dishonest? Would you be seen as lying? It seems that we didn’t learn from the wisdom of Sun Zi. We were only aware of our own ways and not the ways of our counterparts. This mixing of cultures, what is acceptable in one culture may not be acceptable in the other, is common in cultures that are so different at the core. Only when both have a good understanding of the other will they be successful. So how do we deal with these issues in the global village? How do we maintain peace in a world that is nearing turmoil simply for lack of understanding?

For me, a good global negotiator is someone who has the experience and insight to recognize valid differences in cultural and make corrections or even changes in direction to meet the needs. Even slight differences in upbringing can create barriers when not approached with the right attitude, one of openness. All the more for cultures located on opposite sides of the earth.

A few years ago, I went on a trip to Mexico with my family. My sister had an exchange student staying with her family from Thailand. He was trying to barter with a street vendor for a souvenir. My sister overheard him haggling and became angry. She felt he was pushing the price too low. She steamed away in disagreement. The exchange student was perplexed at this and looked as if to be wondering what he had done wrong. I explained to him that she did not understand how some things worked outside America. She is well adapted to the type of marketing where everything has a set price. Her value-set was dictating to her that you must be fair to the other person. I assured him that he should continue in his bartering and interact with the vendor as if he were in Thailand. Happily he ended up getting the souvenir and at the price both individuals felt was fair.

In China, they have an expression that fits well here, “Frog at the bottom of the well”. This could translate to “Ignorance is bliss”. If we’re not open to learning the ways others view the world we too will simply be living our lives like the frog at the bottom of the well; content to have water and mud all around yet oblivious to the world outside the well.

I was once told when bartering in Beijing “Nobody is in the business of going out of business.” Of course, I didn’t get what I wanted for the price I asked.

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5 Unique Ways Sales Negotiators Can Use Concessions

May 23 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

You can never say it too many times: in order to reach an agreement with the other side during a sales negotiation, you ALWAYS have to make some sort of concession(s). The trick to doing this correctly is to make sure that you don’t make so many concessions that when a deal is struck that you’re left feeling that you didn’t get a good deal.

Once upon a time I was in the process of moving to start a new job and had to sell my house. I had found an interested buyer and we were in the processing of negotiating a selling price. We had gotten pretty close to an agreement, but we were not quite there.

I knew that all of the appliances in the house were pretty much on their last legs, and I was concerned that the buyer was going to ask me to replace them as a part of the deal. I has already moved so that would have been a big inconvenience to contract out the work, oversee it, and pay for it. However, the buyer only came back and asked me to replace the hot water heaters. I negotiated just paying him cash to have him take care of it and then we were able to strike a deal.

[Editors Note: I later found out that he pocketed the cash that I gave him, didn't fix the hot water heaters which were in the attic, and shortly thereafter they failed and flooded the house. Ouch - there's a lesson in there somewhere]

Here are few additional guidelines on how to make concessions work for you during your next sales negotiation:

  1. Try to not negotiate using so-called “funny money” – taxes, credit cards, monthly payments, and interest rates. Stick to the real stuff that everyone understands.
  2. Understand and use the power of the word “no”. All too many sales negotiators are afraid to use this word. If you use it over and over again, eventually the other side will come to believe that you really mean it. Persistence pays!
  3. In the heat of a sales negotiation, it can be easy to lose track of what really matters to you. Make sure that you keep a list of what’s important to you (and what’s important to the other side) and look at it often.
  4. If you make a concession that you later on decide was a bad idea, have the courage to step back from that concession. Remember that until the sale is signed for, everything can be re-negotiated. Not stepping back from a previous concession because of pride is one of the biggest mistakes that you can make.
  5. Throttle the other side’s expectations. You are in charge of how many concessions you make and how fast you make them. If you give too much away too soon, then the other side will start to expect even more.

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Best Practices In Negotiation: Negotiate Your Time!

May 22 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

When most of us think of negotiating great deals, there is money involved. We negotiate for better compensation. We negotiate for the best price on a car or house. And we negotiate for various money-denominated goods and services.

What we overlook are money-equivalents. We need to brainstorm ways to improve our negotiations for things that are just as good as money, but which for some reason we don’t consciously believe are negotiable items.

The biggest prize of all, in many cases, is our TIME, the stuff that is always in short supply.

We’ve all heard the expression, “Time is money.” Let’s act like it.

For instance, some of my consulting clients have customers that seemed starved for attention. They phone constantly, asking the same delivery question, over and again.

“When is my package going to arrive?”

Only yesterday, they were politely informed that it would arrive in approximately four business days, yet here they are, on day two, asking for reassurance.

They’ve been given a tracking number, and they have equal access to delivery details, yet they call and call.

I advise focusing them on the carrier, UPS or FedEx or the postal service. Shift their attention to someone else.

Similarly, if a client is becoming too attached to me, finding that I am overly accessible, I’ll steer them to a different person, saying:

“At this point it is so-and-so’s job to get the package to you. My time is committed to something else.”

The trick is to say this as gently as possible, and to avoid sounding self-important. Yet, if it is inevitable that you come across as a bit aloof, this is the price you’ll have to pay to redeem your precious time.

I’ve worked in organizations where instant messaging was used to share information quickly, but it had the effect of shattering people’s attention spans.

In some cases, I’ve opted-out of text messaging, saying if you need me, call me or leave me a voice mail.

Uninterrupted time is essential for accomplishing numerous organizational tasks, so negotiating to get your time back is an ongoing struggle.

This could be as simple as closing your office door, letting it be known in advance that when the portal is sealed, your sanctum is sacred.

Peter F. Drucker, my former professor and world renowned management sage urged executives to “Know Thy Time,” as an essential first step in becoming more effective.

Good idea, but we can’t stop there. At every turn, we need to preserve it and deploy it smartly. Increasingly in this over-communicated world, that means negotiating for it, again and again.

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Communication Skills, NOT! Get the End Result You Want by Outfitting Yourself With Negotiation

May 21 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Do you sit up at night and wonder what it would be like to have the power to achieve everything you want? It’s not uncommon to fantasize about such things and most people believe it’s just that – a fantasy. Most people don’t recognize that their goals and dreams are easily achievable with the right negotiation skills.

Focus on your goal and pin point exactly what (or who) is posing as an obstacle for you. Is there a job you want, but you don’t think you’re not smart enough to get it? Does your supervisor seem hard to talk to? Is your family unwilling to compromise with you? Maybe you’re insecure about asking for a loan from the bank to buy the yacht you want. It’s possible to get rid of all of these obstacles when you’re equipped with successful negotiation skills.

In order to equip yourself with the right negotiation skills, you must ensure you are on the same page as your negotiation partner. Being on the same page means finding common ground with the other party, finding out what their underlying values are. When you find out more about your partner’s wants and your own wants you are equipped with knowledge , which will give you the skills to successfully negotiate what you both want. That’s right, you heard us correctly, we said successfully negotiate what you BOTH want.

When you share the same vision with your negotiation partner it’s much easier create outcomes that are mutually satisfying and give you the results you desire. Being on the same page with someone means sharing a vision, an overarching idea that guides both of you to your desired outcomes. Your shared vision may be to establish open communication with each other or to enhance production. When you have determined your shared vision you are ready to begin your successful negotiation. Just as you would get dressed in the morning, your suit of negotiation skills has pieces that must be put on first before the others. You put your undergarments on first, then your shirt and pants, then your hat, glasses, and watch, etc.

Let’s see how your negotiation outfit goes on:

Piece 1 – Undergarments: This is when you build the foundation for your negotiation skills. Discuss what each of you can do to help build that shared vision. Communicate your opinion with your negotiation partner about what you want and what needs to be done in order to get there.

Piece 2 – Shirt: Next, continue to equip yourself with an ensemble of negotiation skills by asking the other person for their reaction to your plan. Be sure to probe them, finding out exactly what they need from the plan and if they would get that with the plan you have proposed. Remember that the strategy you use needs to be mutually beneficial so that each party feels satisfied with the result. Be a good listener during this stage; be sure you are hearing their words completely before replying to it.

Piece 3 – Pants: This is one of the most important pieces of your suit, and that is to ask the other party to conjure up a strategy of their own; one that would produce all the results they desire in the perfect way. (If they need help, feel free to brainstorm about what you perceive to be their desired outcome.)

Piece 4 – Socks: Sometimes overlooked, this is an integral part of your negotiation outfit. Put on your socks by looking over this new strategy. Does it encompass all that you want out of the deal? Be sure that it satisfies all of your values.

Repeat: It may sound strange, but we’re going to add some more of these same layers to your outfit; after all, this entire ensemble needs to be strong and durable, ready for whatever “weather” you run into. Add “layers” to your outfit by repeating the same steps above. Do this as many times as necessary until you and the other party are completely satisfied.

Piece 5 – Shoes: Slip on this last big piece of your outfit by agreeing upon the detailed actions you will both take to make your shared vision a reality. As soon as you’ve completed this step, move on to Piece 6.

Piece 6 – Accessorize: Accessories are the finishing touches to your negotiation outfit- they make all the difference. Go the extra mile and set up a follow-up meeting right then and there. Even if it’s tentative, just agree on a time to meet. When you follow up you will be discussing the status of your agreements and whether anything needs to be added or changed to make things work for the both of you. This step is all about accountability; without it you have no way of monitoring your progress. If you fail to monitor your progress, you run the risk of finding out later that something went wrong, and by that time there could be resentful feelings on each side.

When you meet to follow up and monitor your progress, you have another chance to wear your negotiation suit. Remember that every great outfit has lasted through many seasons, and the designer has gone through endless hours of training. Keep practicing and you’ll become an even better negotiator; you’ll find yourself achieving your desired outcomes with ease.

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Negotiator – How To Be Smarter About Risk Assessment – Negotiation Tip of the Week

May 20 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

What do you consider when thinking of risk assessment? Do you think about the impact that your past will have on it? Do you consider the same about the person you’ll be negotiating against? There is a multitude of things to consider. Doing so before the negotiation will make you a smarter negotiator. Before your next negotiation, mull over the following insights when pondering how to be smarter about risk assessment.

Gains versus Losses:

Sometimes, people become caught up in the moment. They forget to weigh their potential gains against their potential losses. Losing track of such mindfulness can leave you wondering why you engaged in such folly, once you’ve returned to a clear state of mind.

When assessing risk, know what you’re assessing as it relates to your larger goal. Don’t place yourself in a position where you make a tradeoff or offer, get it, and then discover that there’s an unintended cost for the acquisition. If a request is too costly, it may behoove you not to enter the bidding. A risk matrix can assist in that avoidance.

Risk Matrix:

You can use a risk matrix chart to assess the probability of an outcome in a negotiation. That will help you uncover any hidden risks that you may not have considered. Based on what you know of the other negotiator, you can assess the probability of how he’ll act/react to certain offers and counteroffers. Thus, you might have your offers and potential counteroffers plotted on one scale and markers denoting the probability that he’ll respond in a certain way on the other (e.g. strong possibility, likely, maybe, low probability, not likely). Then, weight each category (e.g. 85-100%, 65-85%, 45-65%, 25-45%, 0-25%, respectively). Of course, your risk matrix will only be valid to the degree your assessment of the other negotiator is accurate. If it’s not you’ll have garbage in, garbage out.


  • Lead/Led – Ask the other negotiator for his thoughts and inputs on matters that you’re unsure about his thoughts. By obtaining his thoughts you’ll gain insight into how he’s thinking. The bonus of that will be of him having the appearance that he’s leading the negotiation. That will also assist your efforts in decreasing the risk that the negotiation might go into unseen and unsuspected areas.

  • Offers – Don’t make offers that would demean or insight the other negotiator. You don’t have to tread so gently that he begins to press you on issues. instead, find the balance between the point of leading and following and know when to commit to either.

  • Anger – When thinking of the strategies you’ll employ in the negotiation be leery of using anger. There are potential hidden risks involved when you anger someone. They can become unpredictable, which means not only would you demean the validity of your risk matrix, you might do irrevocable harm to the negotiation.

Suffice it to say, the fewer variables you can account for when negotiating the stronger your negotiation position will be. That will lead you to be smarter about risk assessment… and everything will be right with the world.

Remember, you’re always negotiating!

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