Negotiating Styles

Styles Matrix.001

Negotiating style refers to the competitive/cooperative profile you bring to the table.  You have to plot out your own attitude, behavior and emotional state during the negotiation.  The 4 styles or types of negotiator are:

Accommodating / Yielding

A fifth type is Compromiser — but that’s not an appropriate  opening position  If you start off saying you want to compromise, the other side hears that you want to accommodate.


Your style is going to be a DECISION, not an emotional response. 

Competitive style is appropriate if your power balance is high, you have a good Plan B and you think he needs you more than you need him.

Collaboration is great when both parties have the power to implement a truly Win Win business plan.  When both sides are strong and both want the deal, then collaboration is possible.

Accommodation is an unfortunate reality if your BATNA is bad and your power is low.  This must be done with dignity and poise.

Avoiding is when you would rather not negotiate at all — like when a seller is calling you and asking for your money.  Avoiding is the strongest position of all — the other side has to make concessions just to get the process started.

Make sure your Best Alternative analysis is sound, you understand your power balance and you know what variables are most important. 

You should prepare two styles — an opening position and a final.  If you have a weak hand, you may start out as a competitor and try to bluff, and avoider who isn’t ready to make a decision, or a collaborator who has a lot to offer in the long run.  You will probably end up as a compromiser or an accommodator in the end.

If your position is powerful, you may start as a competitor if you don’t care too much about repeat business — or you can start off as a collaborator and leverage off the relationship.


Next:  What Would You Do?  Styles

 Back:  The GOBLINS Guide

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