Need to Achieve is your bottom line position.
At this point, your negotiation is no longer an emotional issue. It’s math. If the Plan B you’ve already factored into your analysis is even a little better than the final offer from your counterparty, then you must walk away. If your Plan B is still a little worse, you stay in. By the time you get to the N level, you should standing up with your coat on, a hand on the doorknob. The key to negotiating from a weak position is knowing exactly how and when to walk away.
Know How To Walk Away
Make it easy for them to call you back; make it easy for you to come back. Phrase your goodbye like, “Unfortunately it doesn’t look like we’ll be partnering up this time, but good luck and stay in touch…” Avoid language that would be embarrassing if it was repeated a few years from now. In some markets, a bit of theatrics is welcome. In some markets, it isn’t. It’s you job to know which you’re in. Don’t bluff the walk-away. If they think you aren’t really going to walk away, you are going to get slaughtered. Credibility counts as much at the end of a negotiation as it does at the beginning.
Need is governed by your options.
How do you come up with your N position? Look to your Plan B. You need to achieve more than you would if you went with your next best option. Sometimes your Plan B will be pretty good, like paying a little more or wait a bit longer — but sometimes your Plan B is just awful – like closing your business or losing your job. When it comes to N & B, the good news is that you know the bad news. You make plans for it — like identifying your absolute walk-away point IN ADVANCE and then sticking to it. You want a higher N? Get a better B !