Nobody likes to hear the word "no" when they're asking for things that are important. In this scenario, review a repeatable and reliable template for getting past no and into the zone of agreement.
- When you negotiate, you have to be ready to hear the word no. As I've said before, no signals the beginning of the negotiation, not the end. So I want to give you a simple template for working your way through and past no. Party A asks for something specific, he anchors and frames his request. And Party B says some variation of the word no. Now instead of defending and doubling down, Party A asks a diagnostic question to get underneath that no.
Party B answers and gives a reason for his no. Now Party A acknowledges Party B's answers by labeling or mirroring. And Party A now has an understanding of Party B's interest. And he can use that information to reframe his request. Now let's take a look at this template as it gets put to use by Joe, a conference manager and Adriana, an executive director of a nonprofit organization.
- So I know we're eight months away from the event and only three months away from going live with the registration but if we really want to boost engagement and sponsorship, with all the research points to is shifting from the traditional breakout structure and instead, bringing all the presenters and sponsors to one main room. What are your thoughts on that? - I don't know Joe, just making changes at this stage, it seems to be a little more than risky. - What are your biggest concerns? - I think that changing the structure, it's a little late to be changing the structure.
Specially since we have all of our presenters locked in already. Plus we're light on sponsorship. - So sounds like revenue is a big concern? - Right, exactly. - Well, listen, if you don't think it's in the cards for this year, we can point to next year for sure. But right now I just wanted to get you excited about what's possible. Now what I'd like to do, just go over some of the research with you and I can show you the revised draft I came up with so you can make an informed decision. What are your thoughts on that? - Okay, let's have a look.
- Alright, what I want you to notice is that Joe anchored and framed his request with a what's in it for them approach. He didn't back off at the first objection. And he used diagnostic questions to understand Adriana's perspective. He listened and labeled her concerns. And he used what he learned to reframe and re-anchor his request. Also, notice how he asked another diagnostic question at the end to keep Adriana engaged.
Now to make this template for getting past no most useful, use it as a blueprint for your everyday workplace negotiations.
- Identify the different types of negotiation.
- Distinguish the difference between asking and negotiation.
- List core negotiation practices.
- Explain anchoring and framing for mutual benefit.
- Describe tactical empathy.
- Explain the principles of influence.
- Create an influence plan.
- Analyze conflict styles.
- Recognize contentious negotiation tactics.