21 Essential Rules for Negotiators

Negotiation affects all areas of life let alone all areas of business. Whether you deal with high value negotiations as part of your job or you simply want to improve the way you negotiate with colleagues and clients in your daily interactions, the following negotiation rules will help you achieve your goals.

To be a good negotiator you need to prepare well, be a great listener, be able to control your emotions, be able to both analyse problems and get to the heart of the matter as well as be able to collaborate and develop effective solutions.


In addition, following these 21 essential rules or guidelines will support your efforts massively

  1. Listen more than you talk
  2. Build rapport through everything you say and do
  3. Ask positive questions
  4. Seek explanations
  5. Summarise your understanding frequently
  6. Signal a willingness to give ground
  7. Get signals of their willingness to move
  8. Be open to and explore the suggestions of others
  9. Observe everything that happens
  10. Record every concession, real or suggested
  11. Recognise and handle objections
  12. Keep everything you “offer” as conditional
  13. Keep to your plan for as long as possible
  14. Make your proposals tentative
  15. Make your demands firm
  16. Watch body language, yours and theirs
  17. Take nothing personally
  18. Keep cool overall and only get passionate about “what” not “who”
  19. Use tactics sparingly
  20. Use closing techniques throughout
  21. Learn to handle funny money


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