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<p class="breadcrumb"><a href="index.htm">home</a> &raquo; <a
href="business-selling.htm">business/selling</a> &raquo; negotiation
skills training</p>
<h1>negotiation skills training</h1>
<H3>negotiation techniques for sales, contracts, debts,
            buying, selling and training</H3>
       <P>These negotiation techniques are primarily for
            sales, but apply also to other negotiations, such as debt
negotiation,
            contracts negotiating, buying negotiations, salary and
employment contracts
            negotiations, and to an extent all other negotiating
situations. Negotiation is
            vital for an organization's overall effectiveness.
Organizational effectiveness
            is a product of activities within a system - internal and
external. Negotiation
            is critical to establishing the internal system (structure,
people, functions,
            plans, measures, etc), and the organization's relationship to
the external
            system (markets, suppliers, technology, etc). Negotiation is
also critical to
            optimising the performance of activities internally and
externally (principally
            through communication, by people). </P>
       <P>Good sales negotiation - the rules of which feature
            below - can easily add 10% to sales revenues, which arguably
goes straight to
            the bottom line as incremental profit. Good purchasing
negotiation can easily
            save 10% of the cost of bought in products and services,
which again arguably
            goes straight to the bottom line as extra profit. Good
negotiation by managers
            in dealing with staff can easily reduce staff turnover by 5-
10%, which reduces
            recruitment and training costs by at least the same %, as
well as improving
            quality, consistency and competitive advantage, which for
many companies is the
            difference between ultimate success and failure. Good
negotiation by executives
            with regulatory and planning authorities enables opening new
markets,
            developing new technologies, and the choice of where the
business operates and
            is based, all of which individually can make the difference
between a business
            succeeding or failing.</P>
       <P>Successful debt negotiation with creditors enables a
            business to continue trading. Failure to negotiate debts
often leads to
            business closure. See the <A HREF="#debt negotiation">notes
on debt
            negotiation</A> for business creditors and personal debts
such as credit cards,
            in the debt negotiation article below.</P>
       <P>Salary negotiation affects individuals and
            organizations, and good negotiation skills on both sides
produce positive
            outcomes for all. See also the tips on asking for a salary
rise, and dealing
            with salary increase requests on the <A
HREF="payrise.htm">pay
            rise page</A>. </P>
       <P>These negotiation techniques deal mainly with sales
            negotiation and are written from the point of view of the
'seller'. If you are
            'buying', or want to know how buyers tend to behave look at
the note alongside
            the headings. Sales negotiation is an increasingly important
part of the sales
            process. Negotiation starts when buyer and seller are
conditionally committed
            to the sale (not sooner if you are the sales person; the
sooner the better if
            you are the buyer). Negotiation generally results in a price
compromise between
            seller and buyer - ie., the seller reduces and the buyer
increases from their
            starting positions. Clever buyers will attempt to negotiate
before giving any
            kind of buying commitment. Clever sales people will resist
this. Here are the
            rules of sales negotiating, which imply also the rules for
successful
            negotiating when buying.</P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <H2><FONT FACE="Tahoma" COLOR="#FF0000">modern collaborative
approaches to
            negotiating</FONT></H2>
       <P>In modern times, the aim of negotiation (and
            therefore in training negotiating and negotiation role-plays)
should focus on
            <B>creative collaboration</B>, rather than traditional
confrontation, or a
            winner-takes-all result. The modern and ideal aim of
negotiations - which
            should be reinforced in training situations - is for those
involved in the
            negotiation process to seek and develop new ways of arriving
at better
            collaborative outcomes, by thinking creatively and working in
cooperation with
            the other side. Negotiating should develop a 'partnership'
approach - not an
            adversarial one. As such, negotiating teams and staff
responsible for
            negotiating can be encouraged to take a creative and
cooperative approach to
            finding better solutions than might first appear possible or
have historically
            been achieved in practice.</P>
       <P>Every negotiation, when viewed creatively,
            entrepreneurially and collaboratively, provides an excellent
opportunity to
            develop and improve synergies between and benefiting both
sides, within the
            negotiated outcome. </P>
       <P>You might find it useful to refer to
            <A HREF="sharondrewmorgenbuyingfacilitation.htm">Sharon Drew
            Morgen's concepts</A> regarding collaborative facilitation,
which although
            developed primarily for front-end of the selling process, are
also extremely
            useful for cooperative negotiating. Each side is uniquely
positioned to see how
            the other side can more effectively contribute to the
combined solution - it
            can be a strange concept to appreciate initially, but is
extremely powerful in
            any situation where two people or sides seek to reach
agreement to work
            together, which is essentially what negotiation is all
about.</P>
       <P>That said, it is still important to understand and
            to master the traditional techniques and principles of
negotiation, if only to
            provide a defence and strategy where the other side is firmly
committed to an
            old-style confrontational approach, and these techniques are
explained
            below:</P>
       <P></P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <P>&nbsp; </P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <H2><FONT FACE="Tahoma" COLOR="#FF0000">negotiation tips,
techniques and
            principles</FONT></H2>
       <P>First and most importantly,
            positioning is everything in negotiation. The way that the
situation is
            initially approached, and when, are more influential on
outcomes than all of
            the other negotiating tactics and techniques combined.</P>
       <P>Rules 1 and 2 are absolutely
            critical even before you start a
negotiation.</P><p>&nbsp;</p><H2><FONT FACE="Tahoma" COLOR="#FF0000">1.
have an alternative - negotiate
            with freedom of choice</FONT></H2>
       <P><B>If selling be unique, and have lots of other
            potential customers, and so be able to walk away; if buying
definitely be able
            to walk away.</B></P>
       <P> Whether you are buying or selling,
            if you can't walk away because you need the deal so badly or
because the other
            side is the only game in town, then you are at a serious
disadvantage. If the
            other side believes you are the only game in town then you
have the advantage.
            No other factor is so important: the more you need to secure
the deal, the
            weaker your position, so avoid negotiating when you need the
business badly
            (for the same reason, never find a new house and fall in love
with it before
            you sell your own). The same will apply to your customer,
which is why buyers
            almost always give you the impression that they can go
somewhere else - even if
            they can't or don't want to. </P>
       <P>This also means that when selling
            you must create an impression that there is no alternative
comparable supplier.
            You have to create the impression that your product or
service is unique, and
            that the other person has nowhere else to go. The way you
sell yourself and
            your product must convince the other person that he has
nowhere else to go, and
            that he cannot afford to walk away. </P>
       <P>This positioning of uniqueness is
            the most important tactic, and it comes into play before you
even start to
            negotiate.</P>
       <P>If your product offer is not unique
            remember that <I>you</I> are part of it. You can still create
a unique position
            for yourself by the way that you conduct yourself, build
trust, rapport, and
            empathy with the other person.</P>
       <P>Establishing a position (or
            impression) of uniqueness is the singlemost effective
technique when you are
            selling, whereas denying uniqueness is the most powerful
tactic of the
            buyer.</P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <H2><FONT COLOR="#FF0000">2. negotiate
            when the sale is conditionally agreed, not before (if buying
the opposite
            applies)<B></B></FONT></H2>
       <P><B>Negotiate when the sale is
            conditionally agreed, and no sooner (buyers tend to try to
negotiate before
            giving you any commitment - don't let them)</B></P>
       <P>Or, put another way, don't get drawn
            into negotiating until you've got agreement in principle to
do
            business.</P>
       <P>If you start to negotiate before
            receiving this commitment you'll concede ground and the
customer will attain a
            better starting point. This would put pressure on you to find
more concessions
            later, and ensure a better finishing point for the
customer.</P>
       <P>If you are not sure that the
            customer is conditionally committed to the sale, then ask (a
conditional
            closing question), eg &quot;If we can agree the details will
you go
            ahead?&quot;</P>
       <P>If you're buying, then the opposite
            applies: start to negotiate for concessions before agreeing
you want to buy
            (try this when you next buy something - you'll be amazed at
what you can secure
            without giving any commitment in return). </P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <H2><FONT COLOR="#FF0000">3. aim
            high</FONT></H2>
       <P><B>Aim for the best outcome
            (buyers aim low, and they tend not to go first
either)</B></P>
       <P>(If you're buying, aim very - even
            ridiculously - low - but do it politely.) Whatever you're
doing, your first
            stake in the sand sets the limit on your best possible
outcome. There's no
            moving it closer to where you want to go; it'll only move the
other way. Your
            opening position also fixes the other person's minimum
expectation, and the
            closer your start point is to the eventual finishing point
the more difficult
            it is to give the other person concessions along the way and
ultimately arrive
            at a win-win outcome.</P>
       <P>Many negotiations are little more than a split-the-difference
            exercise. They shouldn't be, but that's often the underlying
psychology and
            expectation. So it's logical that to achieve the best
possible
            finishing position you should
            start as ambitiously as you can (without losing credibility
of
            course).</P>
       <P>If you have the option to hear the
            other person's offer first, then do so. It's a fact that
whoever makes the
            opening offer is at a disadvantage. If you go first, the
other person can
            choose to disregard it and ask for a better offer. And the
other person avoids
            the risk of making an offer themselves that is more
beneficial than you would
            have been prepared to accept. It's amazing how often a buyer
is prepared to pay
            more than an asking price, but avoids having to do so because
they keep quiet
            and let the seller go first.</P>
       <P>Vice-versa, the seller can often
            achieve a higher selling price than he anticipates if he
hears what the buyer
            is prepared to offer first.</P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <H2><FONT FACE="Tahoma" COLOR="#FF0000">4. let the other side go
            first</FONT></H2>
       <P><B>Try to avoid 'going first' on
            price if you can. (Buyers will often be trying the same
tactic.)</B>
            </P>
       <P>If you know the other person's
            starting point before you have to give your own, then this is
clearly an
            advantage to you. For example, if selling, ask the other side
if they have an
            'outline budget'.</P>
       <P>Sometimes you will be pleasantly
            surprised at what the other side expects to pay (or sell at),
which obviously
            enables you to adjust your aim. Letting the other side go
first is a simple and
            effective tactic that is often overlooked.</P>
       <P>Letting the other side go first on
            price or cost also enables you to use another tactic, whereby
you refuse to
            even accept the invitation to start negotiating, which you
should do if the
            price or cost point is completely unacceptable or a 'silly
offer'. This then
            forces the other side to 'go again' or at least re-think
their expectations or
            stance, which can amount to a huge movement in your favour,
before you have
            even started.</P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <H2><FONT COLOR="#FF0000">5. list all
            of the other side's requirements before
negotiating</FONT></H2>
       <P><B>Get the other person's full
            'shopping list' before you start to negotiate (buyers usually
do the opposite -
            they like to pick concessions up one by one -
            indefinitely)</B></P>
       <P>Establish in your own mind what the other person needs,
            including personal and emotional aspects. Everything that is
part of or related
            to a deal has a value. Everything has a cost to you or your
organization, even
            if it's not on the price list. Negotiation isn't just about
price and discount.
            It's about everything that forms the deal. It's about
specification, colour,
            size, lead-time, consumables, contract length, penalty
payments, get-out
            clauses, delivery dates, stock-holding, re-order lead-times,
after-sales
            support product, product
            training, technical back-up, breakdown service, call-out
costs, parts costs,
            parts availability, payment type, payment date, payment
terms. All these and
            more are called variables, and each one affects the cost.
Some affect the cost
            more than others, and buyers and sellers nearly always place
a different value
            on each. It's critical therefore to know exactly what your
buyer wants before
            you start to negotiate. Get the full list of issues written
down and commit him
            to it. This is vital if you are to keep a track on the values
of the deal and
            the eventual outcome. You also avoid your position being
eroded bit by bit by
            the late introduction of concessions required.</P>
       <P>Your buyer's personal and political
            requirements are important too, and the bigger the deal the
more significant
            these factors are. You need to understand what they are,
particularly the
            political and procedural needs within the other person's
organization or
            situation that affect the deal. These issues will concern the
way that the
            organizations relate to each other; who talks to whom; how
justifications and
            reports are prepared; arrangements for future reviews;
provision of
            information; product development collaboration; issues
involving intellectual
            property, future mutual business opportunities, etc.</P>
       <P>Remember that when you sell to
            someone in an organization or group, your buyer is staking
his personal
            reputation within his situation on you, and will not do so
lightly, so you need
            to understand all of his needs and concerns.</P>
       <P>Only then you can begin to
            understand what the implications, costs and perceived values
are.</P><p>&nbsp;</p><H2><FONT FACE="Tahoma" COLOR="#FF0000">6. trade
concessions - don't give
            them away</FONT></H2>
       <P><B> Never give away a concession without getting
            something in return (buyers tend to resist giving any
concessions at
            all)</B></P>
       <P>This is a matter of discipline and
            control. It's simple. Never give anything away without
getting something in
            return. If you do you are not negotiating you are simply
conceding. </P>

      <P>A commitment from the other person
            can be a suitable concession to get in return for something
of relatively low
            value. The simplest and most elegant concession to secure is
agreement to
            proceed with the deal now - use it to close.</P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <H2><FONT COLOR="#FF0000">7. keep the whole picture in
            your mind</FONT></H2>
       <P><B> Keep the whole package in mind all of the
            time (buyers tend to divide and erode your position, bit by
bit)
            </B></P>
       <P><FONT COLOR="#000000">The buyer's tactic will be to
            separate out single issues, or introduce new ones later. If
you allow this to
            happen your position will be eroded.</FONT></P>
       <P><FONT COLOR="#000000">Think about the knock-on
            effects to the whole situation every time a concession is
requested. The
            overall value and profitability of a deal or contract depends
on it's component
            parts. When you change one element, you change the
whole</FONT>, so keep the
            whole situation in mind - keep assessing effects on the total
arrangement,
            understand the effects, and explain how each change or demand
affects the whole
            thing. <B></B></P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <H2><FONT FACE="Tahoma" COLOR="#FF0000">8. prepare and keeping
looking for
            variables (tradable concessions for both sides)</FONT></H2>
       <P><B> Keep searching for variables, concessions,
            'bargaining chips', incentives. (Buyers will look for your
concessions but will
            tend not to offer their own)</B></P>
       <P>A variable or tradable is any factor
            that can be altered and which has a real or perceived value.
You are not a
            mind-reader and the other person may not be totally open, or
even fully aware
            of all the possible variables that are of interest, so keep
looking for
            them.</P>
       <P>Prepare and estimate values of real
            and perceived variables before the negotiation, and keep
looking for new ones
            during the negotiation. </P>
       <P>If the other side is cooperative
            involve them in looking for variables too - for both sides.
</P>
       <P>The more variables you find the less
            you will have to give on price, and the more added-value you
can build into the
            deal. The buyer will not offer his own concessions normally,
so you can look
            for his possible concessions as well as your own (ie
variables within the
            buyer's situation as well as your own).<B></B></P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <H2><FONT FACE="Tahoma" COLOR="#FF0000">9. keep accurate
notes</FONT></H2>
       <P><B> Keep accurate notes, and show that you are doing
            it (the buyer stands to benefit from any lack of record, and
some buyers
            conveniently forget things that are not in their favour, even
concessions
            you've won from them)</B></P>
       <P>Controlling the negotiation is
            vital. the other person may forget, misunderstand, or attempt
to distort
            interpretation of what was discussed and agreed. Keeping
notes shows that you
            are in control, professional, can't be out-flanked, and
enables you to
            summarise and assess continually.<B></B></P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <H2><FONT COLOR="#FF0000">10. summarise and clarify the
            negotiation as you go</FONT></H2>
       <P><B>Summarise and confirm understanding continually
            (see above - it's your loss, not the buyer's, if you allow
misunderstandings to
            develop)</B></P>
       <P><FONT COLOR="#000000">This avoids misunderstandings
developing</FONT>,
            accidentally or otherwise. Misunderstandings can be
catastrophic, not so much
            because of the way they affect the financial structure of the
unfolding deal,
            but because they undermine the rapport and the trust, which
is critical to
            being able to do business in the first place. </P>
       <P>Getting positive agreement
            throughout the process also is psychologically important; it
strengthens trust
            and commitment, and helps to ease the other person into an
agreeable frame of
            mind.</P>
       <P><FONT COLOR="#000000">After the negotiation
            obviously it is essential to give the other person clear
written confirmation
            of the deal.</FONT></P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <H2><FONT FACE="Tahoma" COLOR="#FF0000">negotiation - more
            information</FONT></H2>
       <P>These days we are much more
            determined to press for concessions and the best possible
price. Buyers,
            particularly consumers, are more confident and financially
aware.</P>
       <P>Where competitive pressures exist,
            prices are driven downwards. Where one supplier offers a
certain concession or
            discount, customers expect all others to follow suit. </P>
       <P>Suppliers' prices are more visible,
            so customers know what's on offer elsewhere, and they use
this knowledge to
            secure the best possible deal.</P>
       <P>In the face of these increasing
            pressures we need to have:</P>
       <UL>
            <LI>very good negotiating
              skills</LI>
            <LI>commercial understanding (to
              appreciate the value and implications of each element
within a deal, and for
              giving justification and explanation, etc.)</LI>
            <LI><FONT COLOR="#000000">very good
              communication skills - empathy - (so as to able to
communicate a commercial
              position whilst maintaining a good relationship)</FONT>
</LI>
            <LI>a consistent corporate policy and
              authorisation structure covering discounting and giving
concessions
              </LI>
       </UL>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <P>Organizations that have several
            points or people through which negotiations can take place
must perform well in
            these areas. A chain is only as strong as its weakest
link.</P>
       <P>Organizations with inconsistent or
            vague negotiation practices are vulnerable. Customers are
able to find and
            exploit weaknesses and precedents to drive prices down, force
concessions and
            discount levels up, resulting in erosion of margins for the
company. This
            happens because the company loses control over its starting
positions (first
            stance), and unwittingly provides precedents for generous
finishing
            positions.</P>
       <P>Negotiating a deal, whether you are
            buying or selling, is a strange business.</P>
       <P>In a selling role for a company,
            good negotiation requires a careful combination of empathy
for the other
            person's situation and feelings, with our own
responsibilities to secure the
              best possible commercial outcome for the company.</P>
         <P>On occasions there can be a personal
              dilemma, particularly if our selling style is one that uses a
lot of
            relationship-building and trust. We can feel torn between the
interests of the
            customer - with whom it is of course essential to build an
understanding - and
            the needs of the company.</P>
       <P>So it is essential to remember our
            fundamental responsibility as a sales person, which helps to
avoid being drawn
            into the dilemma territory; remember:</P>
       <P><B>You work for your company, not
            for the customer.</B></P>
       <P>By the same token, <B>the customer
            is out to secure the best possible deal for themselves and
their organization,
            not for your company</B>. (Have you ever known a customer
refuse a discount or
            concession on the basis that it isn't in the best interest of
the supplier? Of
            course not.)</P>
       <P>Another factor is our responsibility
            to existing customers. We undermine our relationships with
existing customers
            if we offer preferential terms to new customers, just to get
the deal.
            </P>
       <P>Giving too much away, or referring a
            negotiation to a higher authority has a demoralising,
undermining effect, and
            customers don't respect it - they take advantage of it. The
urge to sustain a
            friendly, highly amenable relationship with the customer
above all else is a
            trap that we must be alert to, it's human nature, but lots of
customers will
            use it to their advantage. It is entirely possible to
maintain a friendly
            helpful relationship while at the same time being very firm
in negotiating the
            business. </P>
       <P>Deep down we all respect someone who
            takes a firm approach to business, as long as it is delivered
in an
            understanding and empathic way, with proper explanation and
justification for
            the stance taken.</P>
       <P>Good negotiating builds our own
            confidence and natural authority, not to mention the fun we
can have outside
            work, when we are the buyer. </P>
       <P>It's extremely important to make an
           assessment of where the other person is coming from; what the
real and
            perceived issues are, and to separate the psychological
factors from the
            practical ones.</P>
       <P>A person's need to feel that they've
            succeeded in squeezing out a good deal is far different from
the practical
            issue of simply whether they have enough money to afford the
transaction, or
            whether the timings and availability can possibly fit
together.</P>
       <P>The purpose of negotiation is to
            reach a fair and reasonable compromise, not to try to do the
            impossible.</P>
       <P>If a reasonable and commercially
            acceptable compromise is within reach we must use all our
skills to achieve it
            through negotiation.</P>
       <P>If the other person's demands are
            not reasonable, commercially acceptable, or if any aspects of
each side's
            position do not fit, negotiation is not the answer.</P>
       <P>This is why at times the most
            important word to use in any negotiation is 'NO'. </P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <H2><FONT FACE="Tahoma" COLOR="#FF0000">when not to negotiate
(ways of
            saying 'no')</FONT></H2>
       <P>People say a lots of different
            things when they really know the answer is
&quot;No.&quot;</P>
       <P>&quot;I'll see what I can do.&quot;</P>

       <P>&quot;I'll let you know.&quot;&quot;</P>
       <P>&quot;Maybe.&quot;</P>
       <P>&quot;I'll ask.&quot;</P>
       <P>&quot;I'll find out.&quot;</P>
       <P>&quot;You could call head office and ask;
            they have more authority than me.&quot;</P>
       <P>If the demand or request is not
            possible, too commercially demanding, or not reasonable for
any reason we must
            kill it there and then, or it will come back to haunt you. Do
not negotiate if
            there are unrealistic demands being made at any stage. This
is for three
            reasons. </P>
       <UL>
            <LI>It prevents you having to concede
              substantial ground unnecessarily.</LI>
            <LI>It avoids raising false hopes,
              which would make it difficult for us later to satisfy
later.</LI>
            <LI>It stamps your personal authority
              and professionalism on the situation.</LI>
       </UL>
       <P>A clear and honest &quot;No, I'm afraid
            not,&quot; with suitable explanation and empathy for the
other person's situation is
            all it takes.</P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P><HR>
       <H2><FONT COLOR="#FF0000" FACE="Tahoma"><A NAME="debt
negotiation"></A></FONT></H2>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <H2><FONT COLOR="#FF0000" FACE="Tahoma"><A NAME="debt
negotiation">notes on
            debt negotiation</A></FONT></H2>
       <P>Whether debts are business or
            personal, these debt negotiation skills should help you to
improve your
            situation. Negotiation of debts for business, or personal
debts such as credit
            cards, or debts with other creditors, start with one simple
rule that is often
            overlooked:</P>
       <H2>debt negotiation skill
            1:</H2>
       <H1>negotiate!</H1>
       <P>Amazingly many people who find
            themselves confronted by personal or business debts and
pressure from creditors
            fail to think of negotiation as an option. Understandably
fearful or
            embarrassed, people and businesses with debt problems usually
fail to confront
            the situation until it's too late. Fear not - most people and
businesses get
            into serious debt at some stage in their lives. Many of the
most successful
            business owners and tycoons have been bankrupt or presided
over insolvent
            businesses at some time - getting onto debt is part of
experience and
            risk-taking in business, and it's part of life in the process
of growing up.
            You are not alone. The important thing is what you do about
it. When you know
            you have a problem, start negotiating. Debtors often think
there's no point,
            that negotiation isn't an option, but it is, and here's
why:</P>
       <P>Creditors most fear losing their
            money and having to write off the debt altogether. That's why
creditors
            generally are very happy to begin the negotiation process
when debts have
            become a problem for the debtor. To a creditor, negotiating a
debt means that
            they have a chance of recovering some or all of the debt. If
a creditor fails
            to begin a debt negotiation with the debtor, the creditor
faces costs of debt
            recovery (solicitor's letters and debt collection agency
fees, etc), and a real
            risk that the debtor will for whatever reason be unable to
pay any of the debt
            (insolvency, bankruptcy, deliberate avoidance, etc), which
leaves the creditor
            no option other than to write off the debt, losing
everything, and having to
            pay debt recovery costs. Where there is negotiation there is
hope of partial or
            complete debt recovery, and the avoidance of debt collection
costs, which is
            why creditors generally welcome the offer to negotiate from a
debtor in
            difficulty.</P>
       <H2>debt negotiation skill
            2:</H2>
       <P>Seek advice and help. Whether for a
            personal or business debt, don't try to do it all by
yourself. Getting into
            debt can be a lonely and threatening experience, so seek a
friendly shoulder to
            cry on, someone to share your thoughts with, and ideally
someone who has a bit
            of experience and wisdom, who can help you see a way forward.
Try to avoid
            paying for this sort of help - avoid the unknown, especially
the pariahs out
            there who will take advantage of your vulnerability given
half a chance. If you
            have personal debts such as credit cards contact an advisory
service - there
            are plenty who can help depending where you are in the world.
If your business
            has debts, contact your trade association, or local business
support centre,
            again there are various organizations depending on where you
are. At the very
            least call on a friend to help find some support and advice.
Linked to the
            points above and below, the creditor is often a really good
source of help and
            advice - remember, the creditor wants you to succeed, not
fail.</P>
       <H2>debt negotiation skill
            3:</H2>
       <P>The third skill is to ask the
            creditor for help. Options usually appear straight away when
a creditor
            realises there is a debt problem, because the creditor wants
to help keep the
            debtor solvent. Options typically extended by creditors
include:</P>
       <UL>
            <LI>renegotiated credit and supply
              terms, enabling the business debtor to continue to
trade.</LI>
            <LI>extension of the period by which
              the debt has to be settled.</LI>
            <LI>price, product and supply
              arrangement review, to determine whether future economies
can be found for the
              debtor, to avoid increasing the debt any more than
absolutely
              unavoidable.</LI>
            <LI>debtor stock-holding review, to
              assess possibility of returning stock to the creditor, and
reducing the
              debt.</LI>
            <LI>Creative creditors may come up
              with more ideas - the important thing is to talk and work
together to resolve
              the problem constructively.</LI>
       </UL>
       <H2>debt negotiation skill
            4:</H2>
       <P>The third debt negotiation skill is
            about behaviour and style. Work with the creditor. Be open
and positive, and
            build trust with the creditor. If the creditor trusts you and
believes that you
            wish to resolve the debt honestly and as fully as you can,
then the creditor
            will be positive and flexible in return. They want to help
you work your way
            through the difficulties, because if you fail, the likelihood
is that the debt
            will have to be written off altogether. The people
negotiating for the
            creditors spend their lives dealing with debtors who are
dishonest, elusive,
            and distrustful. When a debtor demonstrates willingness to
co-operate and
            negotiate fairly the creditor will respond in kind. Debts are
a threat to the
            creditor's business too, which is why debt recovery people
can be firm and
            aggressive. You will reduce the creditor's need to be
aggressive if you
            co-operate and build trust.</P>
       <H2>debt negotiation skill
            5:</H2>
       <P>Make changes. Debts build up because
            something has gone wrong, so understand what it is and take
steps to prevent it
            happening again or continuing. Debts don't generally happen
by accident, they
            happen because plans are wrong, controls are too relaxed or
non-existent, or
            because spending isn't properly monitored and measured.
Identify what's wrong
            and put it right. Tell the creditor what you are doing so
they they understand
            you have taken steps to ensure the problem won't get worse or
            re-occur.</P>
       <H2>debt negotiation skill
            6:</H2>
       <P>Keep smiling. Not easy, but try to
            keep things in perspective. Aim to honour your commitments
and obligations as
            best you can, but keep things in proportion. Do your best for
the creditor(s),
            but be fair to yourself. If you are still reading this you'll
not be the sort
            of person who deliberately and maliciously gets into debt and
then seeks to
            avoid responsibility. So try to keep a calm detachment, and
don't eat and sleep
            your debt difficulties. Do what you can to resolve your debt
problems, but make
            sure you spend time re-fuelling your spirit and strength.
Business is a bit
            like a game, it's a means to an end. It's not life and death.
Money is a means
            to an end too. It's not life and death. </P>
       <P></P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <P>&nbsp;</P><HR>
       <H2><FONT COLOR="#FF0000">A negotiation story (light
            relief for negotiating training sessions or debt negotiation
            meetings)</FONT></H2>
       <P>A sales-woman is driving home in the rain when she
            sees a little old lady walking by the roadside, heavily laden
with shopping.
            Being a kindly soul, the sales-woman stops the car and
invites the old lady to
            climb in. During their small talk, the old lady glances
surreptitiously at a
            brown paper bag on the front seat between them. &quot;If you
are wondering what's in
            the bag,&quot; offers the sales-woman, &quot;It's a bottle of
wine. I got it for my
            husband.&quot; The little old lady is silent for a while,
nods several times, and
            says ........ &quot;Good trade.&quot; </P>
       <P><FONT COLOR="#000000">(ack C Byrd)</FONT></P>

       <P>&nbsp;</P>
       <P></P><HR>
<h3>see also</h3>
<ul>
       <li> ideas for negotiation training exercises in the
            <A HREF="teambuildinggames.htm">team building activities</A>,
            for example the
            <A HREF="teambuildinggames.htm#negotiation teams scenario
exercises">team
            negotiation scenarios exercise</A></li>
       <li><A HREF="sharondrewmorgenbuyingfacilitation.htm">advanced
selling
            technique - buying facilitation<FONT SIZE="-1">&reg;</FONT> -
sharon drew
            morgen</A></li>
       <li><A HREF="market.htm#'Tricks of the Trade'">advertising tricks
of the trade</A></li>
       <li><A HREF="salestraining.htm#aida">aida - and other selling
techniques</A></li>
       <li><A HREF="freebusinessplansandmarketingtemplates.htm#boston
matrix">boston matrix</A></li>
       <li><A HREF="freebusinessplansandmarketingtemplates.htm">business
planning and marketing strategy - how to
            write</A></li>
       <li><A HREF="businessstrategyimplementation.htm">business strategy
implementation and
            realisation</A></li>
       <li><A HREF="buyingtechniques.htm">buying techniques and
strategy</A></li>
       <li><A
HREF="businessesfranchisesopportunitiesinformation.htm">franchising
business - buying guide</A></li>
       <li><A HREF="market.htm">marketing
            guide</A></li>
       <li><A HREF="salestraining.htm#needscreationselling">needs
creation selling technique</A></li>
       <li><A HREF="project.htm">project
            management skills and technique</A></li>
       <li><A HREF="salesactivatorsellinggames.htm">sales activator&reg;
- training and development games
            system</A></li>
       <li><A HREF="salesdevelopmentresearch.htm">sales research summary
of key selling success
            factors</A></li>
       <li><A HREF="salestraining.htm">sales
            training and selling theories</A></li>
       <li><A HREF="swotanalysisfreetemplate.htm">swot analysis - free
template and examples</A></li>
        <li><A HREF="pestanalysisfreetemplate.htm">pest market analysis -
free template</A></li>
        <li><A HREF="portersfiveforcesofcompetition.htm">porter's five
forces of competitive position</A></li>
</ul>
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