Skillful and effective negotiation involves a combination of communication skills and an understanding of both your goals and those of your counterpart. In addition, your ability to persuade convincingly can also help your counterpart understand and accept your position. Persuasion is a powerful strategic tactic that can help you achieve your desired outcome in a negotiation. Through the power of persuasion, you can convince your opponent to accept your views and possibly change their course of action. Learning the skill of persuasion can also help you handle and resolve disputes. Here are a few ways you can apply persuasion skills to positively influence the outcome of your next negotiation.
The Reciprocity Effect
In general, people like to repay what they have received from others. For instance, if someone gives you a Christmas gift, you may want to reciprocate because now you feel obligated to do so. Similarly, you receive the “small gift” of address labels from a charitable organization and now you feel obliged to donate in return. This can be applied to negotiation as a great way to persuade the other party. You give them something they perceive as valuable and you get something you want in return.
The Consistency Principle
People feel the need to remain consistent in their beliefs, actions, and opinions. In many cases, once a position is taken, people tend to stick with it just because they feel committed to it. That is why salespeople often use this tactic when negotiating. They get the other person to agree with them multiple times because after saying “ye” over and over, it becomes very difficult to say “no” when it’s time to close the deal.
People tend to buy from people that they like. They may even agree to something they don’t really want simply because they like the other person and want to please them. Successful negotiators understand this tactic and work to establish a rapport with the other party. They may engage in small talk and find similarities, common interests, or shared backgrounds. Once this relationship has been established, it becomes difficult for the other person to say “no” simply because they don’t want to disappoint you.
Law of Scarcity
We have all seen ads on TV claiming that you need to “act now while supplies last!” The Law of Scarcity suggests that if there is a limited supply of something then it must be good or popular. When people think there is a limited supply of an item or that an offer will soon expire, they feel compelled to act quickly so they don’t miss out.
This tactic works when you draw on testimonials from satisfied customers or clients. When a prospective customer hears how much current customers love your product or service, they are more convinced to follow suit. People like to feel like they are part of a community and if “everyone” else loves your product, they will probably love it too.