Brandon Voss

Brandon Voss
Brandon Voss is the President of The Black Swan Group. Brandon has been instrumental in adapting the FBI’s hostage negotiation techniques to the business world. In addition to training clients, Brandon has guest lectured at USC Marshall School of Business and Georgetown McDonough School of Business.
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Recent Posts

How to Become an Assertive Negotiator

By Brandon Voss | July 26, 2021

Because you’re reading these words, chances are that you want to become an Assertive negotiator.

Stop it!

It’s time to let go of that desire. The fact that you want to become an Assertive negotiator is hurting your efforts. The reality is: The whole Assertive negotiator persona is factually a detriment to true influence. No ones likes being yelled at.

Does your negotiation strategy fit their personality? Use this guide to  negotiate successfully with anyone »

The Black Swan Group teaches about the three negotiator types: Assertives, Accommodators, and Analysts. According to rough data, negotiators split up evenly into each of these groups. This means you only have a one in three chance of running into an Assertive—your chances of running into an Analyst or an Accommodator are much higher.

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How to Build Rapport Quickly in Any Situation

By Brandon Voss | May 24, 2021

At the end of the day, people like doing business with people they like. 

This is why it’s so important to build rapport as quickly as you can whenever you sit down at the table. Once you’ve established rapport, you’re well on your way to the trust-based influence that is needed to achieve the outcomes you’re hoping for.

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Why the Best Question Is the One You Never Ask

By Brandon Voss | May 03, 2021

Questions are universally known as necessary mechanisms to gather information from another party. 

Although this still rings true to a certain extent, it is not as if you can ask any old question and get the results you’re looking for. You have to ask the right questions, and you have to ask them in the right order.

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Infographic: How to Negotiate Through the Sales Process

By Brandon Voss | March 18, 2021

A lot of salespeople go into meetings with potential buyers and spend their time trying to educate them about their products.

But that’s awareness stage stuff. It’s really the job of marketing, and not what your counterpart who’s already agreed to sit down at the table needs to hear. 

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4 Ways to Get Everything You Want in a Contract Negotiation

By Brandon Voss | March 01, 2021

Every negotiator wants the same thing: getting exactly what we want every time we sit down at the table.

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Why Good Cop, Bad Cop in a Negotiation is a Terrible Idea

By Brandon Voss | February 01, 2021

If you’ve ever seen practically any movie that involves police officers, you’re familiar with the good cop/bad cop negotiation strategy. During an interrogation, one cop is super nice and the other is a complete jerk.

Though this strategy might lend itself nicely to the silver screen, it’s not something you should ever rely on in the world of high-stakes negotiation. Here’s why:

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How to Teach Your Sales Team to Negotiate Better Deals

By Brandon Voss | January 25, 2021

Whether your sales team is crushing it every month or struggling to reach targets, you can always get better results.

One of the main reasons sales teams don’t reach their full potential is because they bring the wrong tactics to the table.

If your goal is teaching your team to negotiate better deals, here are three lessons you’ll need to get across to achieve that objective.

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3 Tips to Win Your Next Sales Negotiation in a Virtual World

By Brandon Voss | December 21, 2020

Many sales negotiations have moved online during the COVID-19 pandemic. Instead of sitting across the table from someone, sales teams are now hopping between phone calls and Zoom calls to engage the other side and close deals.

Just because your sales negotiation opportunities may have moved from the physical world to the digital world doesn’t mean you need to forget the Black Swan skills and teachings you’ve learned over the years. In fact, our guidelines still apply to virtual sales negotiations.

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5 Steps to Negotiate Through the Sales Process

By Brandon Voss | December 14, 2020

If you read my previous post, “Why the Traditional Sales Process Is Wrong,” you know that we’re not big fans of the traditional sales process here at The Black Swan Group. Not only does the traditional approach take way too much time, but it also comes with a number of other downsides, such as:

  • Wasting your counterpart’s time
  • Duplicating work
  • Taking longer to get paid
  • Spending more time tracking customer interactions
  • Preventing your business from reaching its full potential
  • Frustrating your team

We advocate for doing everything you can to accelerate your sales process. If you can talk today and get paid tomorrow, well, is the status quo going to stop you from cashing that check?

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Why the Traditional Sales Process Is Wrong

By Brandon Voss | December 07, 2020

I struggle with the whole idea of the sales process in general. Granted, I haven’t worked in every industry on the planet. But even though I’ve worked for companies that have had long sales processes, I’ve never been part of a long process myself. 

To me, sales is just two things: the conversation and signing on the dotted line. I’ve always wondered why organizations need all of these different stages of the sales process if we can just get the other side on the phone and sell to them.

Why waste your time when you can just sell?

Mapping out a long sales process guarantees one thing: It’ll take much longer than needed to close. I’ve just never understood why many companies decide to go this route. Why map out an eight-month process for a sale when you can talk today and get the money tomorrow?

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