The art of negotiation

Hone your negotiation skills.

At MRO Accounts we can advise business owners in the Hemel Hempstead area on many aspects of running and growing a business. Here are some tips for successful negotiation...

Whether we are buying a house, planning a merger, discussing wages, meeting the bank manager, or fighting over the remote control, we all negotiate on a daily basis. So naturally, we'd all like to be good at negotiating and we'd all like to be able to 'get our own way' most of the time.

However, negotiation is a two-way process and it is worth bearing in mind this observation about human nature: if you want an agreement or compromise to be sustainable, people must leave the meeting room feeling satisfied that they have really agreed something, not that they've been bulldozed into submission.

Here are some pointers towards successful negotiation:

Devise a plan

First you must ask yourself what it is that you want, and why. Listing your objectives will help you work out exactly where you are willing to concede ground and where you want to stand firm. This will help you keep control of negotiations and offer incentives and compromises: "I'll let you have x, if I can have y". Then imagine yourself in the other party's position and anticipate their likely responses and objections.

Be confident

Express yourself clearly and positively. Do your research and make sure you are familiar with the main points you want to make. This will help your confidence and there is nothing more powerful than backing up an argument with hard facts and figures.

Never be the first to lose your cool

There is nothing more unsettling or undermining than someone keeping their cool and answering calmly when you are red with rage. Even if the other party is being wilfully obstructive, count to ten and stay calm.

Show that you are listening

Don't just push your side. Always be friendly and polite and demonstrate that you are not there to talk about your needs alone. This is essential if you want the other party to feel that they have really contributed to the final compromise and 'got something out of it'.

Prepare for the unexpected

Don't be thrown off course if the other party changes direction. Be ready to think on your feet.

Make it official

Once you have secured your agreement, ask for written confirmation, signed by both parties, and prepare an action plan with clear guidelines for responsibility and follow-up.

If you are in the Hemel Hempstead area and are looking for support and advice from a team of professional accountants and business advisers, contact MRO Accounts.

What our clients say:

“Working with Melody is an absolute pleasure. She handled my accounts with complete unflappable professionalism and navigated her way thought the HMRC hoops. In my first year of business I was employed, unemployed and self-employed, all within 12 months - not a simple situation! And she does it all with a smile :)”

Thank you Mel, you let me get on with my job confident that my accounts are in safe hands

Dee Fagg, 3D-VA

“I have known Mel for 6 months and in that time she has managed to totally organise my accounts and make me company be more efficient, what used to take me a long time, takes her a very short time, she makes it seem easy and is able to make me understand what I should be doing and the easiest way of doing it! My accounting life is now so easy not a time to be dreaded!! Thank you Mel!”

Claire Lee, Venue Queen Ltd

“MRO Accounts have been very helpful in the early stages of getting my business started, with clear advice and guidance that has really helped me sort my finances out. MRO Accounts have always been very prompt and speedy in dealing with any of my queries, which is very important to me and gives me every confidence that I am dealing with professionals. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend their services.”

M Hamilton
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