On Negotiation Skills

An Answer by Osama El-kadi

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To answer such a “subjective” question regarding negotiation skills, one must make some assumption to make the question a bit more “objective”.

Q A tough guy, a thinker, a nice guy and a wheeler dealer on the same negotiation table each representing his side. From your point of view who may end up having the upper hand and get the most out of the negotiation round?

A To answer such a “subjective” question regarding negotiation skill, one must make some assumption to make the question a bit more “objective”.

We need to assume that, first, the four negotiators understand and practice some strategic negotiations skill and secondly, only the Wheeler Dealer have in addition some tactical skills, i.e. being a wheeler dealer…

If this was the case, then certainly the “Wheeler Dealer” Would have the upper hand in any negotiation at any time.

The tough guy may sometimes have the upper hand depending on his leverage with the opposing party in a given situation. Nevertheless, one day he will meet either his match or even a tougher guy who would beat him.

The nice guy would only win if he meets a nicer guy, but ordinarily, he will never make a good deal and will always be more concerned with how much the other people like him.

The thinker, assuming you mean the one who takes his time to make decisions and see opportunities; He will certainly lose every time with anyone. A good tactician could implant ideas in his head and have the upper hand. Speed is negotiations can become vital sometimes.

As for the Wheeler Dealer who also have some strategic negotiation skills, he will use it to understand and exploit the weaknesses of the other three more effectively.

The Wheeler Dealer will humble himself to the tough guy to get him to make mistakes and exploit them. He will plant ideas of “intellectual” resonance in the mind of the thinker and dominate him. He will praise the nice guy and get him on his side and therefore have the upper hand on these three negotiators.

Fundamentally speaking, Combining both tactical negotiation skills with strategy knowledge and skill, can be devastating and powerful in any negotiation.

It is basically having the view of the bigger picture while understanding the psychology of the situation.

The view of the bigger picture i.e. strategy skills, is about understanding one’s own position in the situation.

The psychology of the situation is about understanding one’s opponents and their weaknesses and strengths.

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