What Is The Black Swan Group's Negotiation 9™ (N9™)?

By Sandy Hein | February 08, 2021

The Black Swan Group’s Negotiation 9™ (N9™) are the nine skills that make it easy to achieve Tactical Empathy™ (TE™) —the best way to accomplish trust-based influence, which should be your primary goal every time you step to 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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5 Steps to Assess Your Leadership Skills

By Derek Gaunt | January 18, 2021

Many leaders get to the top, think they’ve made it, and stop trying to improve.

The best leaders, on the other hand, understand that leadership is always a work in progress and that they can always sharpen their skills. They understand that toxic leaders are the No. 1 reason people leave their jobs, so they work hard to constantly get better and get their team to trust them more and more.

If your goal is to keep your employees engaged and build a tight-knit team that would go to the ends of the earth for you, cycle through these five steps regularly to keep your eyes on the prize.

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Communication Skills: How to Deliver Bad News

By Derek Gaunt | January 11, 2021

In an ideal world, everything would be rosy, and you’d never have to deliver bad news to your direct reports. But there comes a time when every leader needs to give negative feedback or share news the team doesn’t want to hear. The way you approach these delicate conversations will make all the difference in the world.

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Dealing with a Cut-throat Negotiator

By Chris Voss | January 04, 2021

The Black Swan Method™ was originally designed for the cut-throat negotiator. Check out this quick clip to learn how to deal with these folks (and keep reading through to the end of the article for a bonus tip): 

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Communication Skills: How Leaders Can Regain Trust

By Derek Gaunt | December 28, 2020

Even though you’re a leader, you’re still a human being—which means that from time to time, you’re going to make mistakes. That’s just the way it is.

Now, making a mistake isn’t the end of the world—even for leaders. But because of their egos, many leaders fail to admit they’ve made any mistakes at all. They’re afraid of looking weak or being viewed as fallible. For some people, an apology is akin to an admission of incompetence.

When leaders don’t accept responsibility for their own individual shortcomings as well as when the team doesn’t perform the way it’s supposed to, relationships with those around them are damaged. 

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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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