Planning and preparation: One of the ways to become a great negotiator is by having a deep knowledge of the issue. Having a wide comprehension of the nature of the conflict, the history leading up to the negotiation, and the goals of the negotiation will shape a more focused process of negotiation. Emphasizing your strengths and improving your weaknesses can also boost your negotiation levels.
Performing a background check is another effective way to make a negotiation strategy ahead of time. Making the effort to gather as much information as possible about your counterpart–who they are, what are their goals, views, and hidden interests–help you discover potential matters that could affect the negotiation process. Understanding your counterpart opens up opportunities to set a counter argument with facts and data.
Setting ground rules: The second step that can strengthen the negotiation process is defining the procedures that act as a guidance. Set a rule (such as what is allowed and what is not allowed) that both parties are willing to commit to.
After knowing the actors involved and where the negotiation will take place, find out what issue the negotiation revolves around and what procedure to follow if a disagreement arises.
Moreover, preparing for the worst situation always helps. If both parties cannot break a deadlock, make an estimation of what you are willing to compromise and under what situation you can turn down their demands.
Clarification and justification: This is where both sides propose their demands. You will be thankful for your superb planning once the negotiation begins, because your preparation makes you a more effective negotiator. Having a rich knowledge of the subject sets you apart when informing and educating your counterpart about the importance of your demand and how you have arrived at your demand.
Negotiation skills touch on the ability to amplify, clarify, bolster, justify, and provide the other side with data to support your position. But whatever the approaches, whether it be distributive or integrative, they ought to be non-confrontational.
Bargaining and problem solving: Negotiation skills are, in essence, about resolving an issue by reaching a compromise between the two sides. When you are faced with a conflict of interests, you must break through with different negotiation strategies to reach a give and take situation. This is where you give your fullest effort to implement various approaches.
Closure and implementation: A master negotiator is one that can shape a mutual agreement. It doesn’t stop here: you must also be able to develop an important structure for the actualization and monitoring of the agreement, achieve the closing in a formal or informal way, by contract or a simple handshake to show the commitment between your two parties.