Think You're A Good Negotiator?

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When was the last time you conducted any kind of negotiations? Did you get what you wanted or did you have to compromise? Or, did the other person end up winning? We negotiate all the time, both professionally and personally. 

When my husband and I were in the process of buying a house, my husband insisted that we don't pay the asking price. I, on the other hand, thought the asking price was fair, considering comparables in the same building and neighborhood. Besides being on the market for a while and finding out that the owner needed the cash, my husband leveraged that information to negotiate a lower purchase price. I was nervous because I didn't want to lose the house to someone else. I was sure that the owner would balk at the price we were suggesting. My husband stayed his ground, and lo and behold! The owner accepted our offer! If it had been up to me, we would have paid the full asking price and then not have any money to do the renovations we wanted to do. 

I admire him for sticking to his guns and because he did, we got the house and saved some money, too! I'm usually all about thinking too much about the risks if I take a specific action. I'm all about asking the "what if's." What I've discovered that sometimes you have to bypass these pesky little questions in your head and take some risks. And keeping your eyes on your end goal instead. 

I'm learning to be more of a risk taker in my personal life, so I'm making it my goal to do just that. Learn to be a better negotiator and get what I want. 

Here's a great article written by Dr. Heidi Grant Halvorson on HBR's blog, who offers some tips for all of us aspiring negotiators. For me, the next time I'm faced with the kind of situation that calls upon some adept negotiating skills, I'll be flawless. "So, how about if I were to offer....instead?"