In this video, learn to design communication strategies to engage both the direct parties to the negotiation—those actively engaged—and the indirect parties—those interested, but not actively negotiating. Complex negotiations typically have multiple parties affected by the process and outcomes; managing the expectations of all affected people helps ensure better implementation of the negotiated solution.
- I love live theater. There's something about watching actors create music and stories that just delights me. I have no desire to be on stage but adore being in the audience. Most negotiators don't intend a career in acting, but in some situations it can't be helped. You're on stage. There's an audience watching. They're directly or indirectly affected by the outcome. Even though they're not actively at the table, these parties influence the negotiation physically and psychologically. If you're formally representing a group, that group may constrain what you can offer and accept. And knowing your final agreement may be publicized by the press can change the way you bargain. So just as you need to plan for people at the table, you need to develop a strategy for communicating with outside parties during the negotiation. Here's some ways to approach this. First try consultation. Invite constituents to participate in your planning. Survey key parties, asking them to rank their top three interests, or invite them to a strategy session to brainstorm the other side's objections. The transparency of consultation develops trust, and research confirms that buy-in from outside parties gives you confidence and flexibility while negotiating. You can use anchoring to manage expectations. Share your worst case scenario with constituents. Explain why you might agree to a bad deal or even walk away. You've heard the phrase under promise over deliver. That's the strategy. You know you'll likely do better than the bad scenarios, but anchoring outside parties to them has benefits. Focus on the best possible outcome, and anything below that seems like a loss. But anchor on the lesser deal, and the final agreement feels like a win. It's also good to overcommunicate and provide regular updates. You don't disclose everything, of course, but even a short daily summary can keep others calm. It assures them you're working diligently on their behalf and makes them feel part of the process. Remember, you're not the only one with outside obligations. Helping the other side communicate with their constituents can make the negotiation go more smoothly. Put an outside communication strategy on your agenda. Issue joint public statements if possible, particularly if you seek a collaborative outcome. Helping your opponent frame and sell the deal to their third parties makes implementation easier. Most of the time your constituents won't actively watch the drama of your negotiation unfold. Even so, they play an important role. So develop a script to engage with your audience. Then enjoy their applause.
- Coordinating negotiations with multiple parties
- Maintaining long-term relationships
- Making multiple offers
- Being friendly and aggressive in negotiations
- Gender and negotiation