The Power of Persuasion
These guidelines cover the aspects of persuasion.
The Implementation Guides and action points contained in the other tutorials form a pathway designed to assist the senior manager (in this case) in producing a viable and fair solution for both parties.
One of the ‘trigger point’ guidelines in this particular case lay in the planning process and the senior manager’s ability to assess your negotiation counterpart’s objectives, constraints and limits of authority as well as any personal factors that may impact on the negotiations.
In this regard, here is an extract of the key action points involved (there are some action points not included for the purposes of this case study):
ACTION 1: ask yourself the question: “What does my counterpart need to achieve?’ See if you can identify the most important needs. Don’t forget that they, like you, may also have some needs that are desirable.
ACTION 2: now, provisionally convert these into negotiation objectives using the rules that objectives should be specific, measurable, capable of agreement, realistic and set in a time frame.
ACTION 3: make an initial risk assessment of your counterpart’s objectives. Look at their probabilities, positive and negative outcomes, net outcome, downside risk and sensitivities. You will not be able to do this with any degree of certainty but you are starting to investigate the other person’s position and looking for indications of their objectives. You can verify this later.
ACTION 4: see if you can forecast the constraints they will be negotiating within. These constraints will he the lower and/or upper limits around each objective measurement. In addition, make a preliminary assessment of the limits of decision authority that your partner may have.
ACTION 5: finally, see if you can assess your counterpart’s outlook on the negotiations. This will bring to the fore the most important values, beliefs and experiences. Attempt to answer the following questions:
- will they be detached?
- will they be objective?
- do they value fairness?
- do they value compromise?
- will they openly disclose information?
- do they value trust?
- are they intelligent?
- are they creative?
- do they value problem solving?
- will they have a ‘soft’ or ‘hard’ approach?
- if trust fairness and enhanced working relationships are not present in the negotiations, will they curtail the negotiations?
- what factors would make them curtail the negotiations?
- given their basic approach, use your imagination and assess the possible impact of their approach on the negotiations.