Here's the top 2 reasons not to go first in a negotiation. And they both leave money on the table.
"Maybe" I remember hearing a few years ago a businessman saying he started moving his business forward much more successfully when he started treating every “maybe” as if it were a “no”.
Is “Yes” really always “yes”? “No” is protection. “Yes” is commitment. “No” instantly makes people feel safe while “Yes” makes them worry about what they’ve committed themselves to. Nearly every “Yes” at best is a conditional “yes” and often is a counterfeit “yes”.
The #1 Sin - The Lust for “Yes” Lust. One of the 7 deadly sins of life and the first Deadly Sin of Negotiation. It’s a powerful poison for a reason. Lust is the dangerous alchemy of love and fear combined. You love, yearn, crave something and at the same time you fear losing it so much you close your ears, eyes, and mind to everything that threatens it.
A “take it or leave it offer” signals a great deal of insecurity on the part of the other side. If they weren’t afraid to negotiate, they would. They’re either afraid they might give in too much, or they’re under some external pressure that’s got them spooked. This gives you leverage.
Yes is a very tricky concept, especially when put it into the negotiation context. First of all, there are 3 types of “yes” – Confirmation, Commitment & Counterfeit – (the 3 ways to “C” yes) as it were. Now while we do not ever advocate aiming for a “yes” or trying to force agreement through “yes”, there will be times when you have to deal with it. Here are the two major ways to handle “yes”.
Do you want to make the transition to being an excellent negotiator? No matter where you are on the journey, here are 5 critical steps that you'll need to take along this path.
My last article in The Edge called “The Problem with Tell Me More” left a few people asking “What do you say instead?”. This article is meant to give some insight on how to change your approach and make your communication efforts more influential. You can also find out more about the ideas I am going to share here, in Chris’s book “Never Split the Difference” Chapter 7.
This particular article is for you if: You want every edge and you want to protect your good working relationships You can wrap your mind around the idea that deference is not submission You want to become a truly dangerous negotiator
In a Q & A session I did for the internet based forum Quora: I answered the question “What’s the worst mistake you can make in salary negotiations?” with this answer: “Simply saying “yes” or “I accept” to an offer.