What is your Negotiation Style?

By Stephen Kozicki & Gary Peacock

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We have the ability to create choice by altering our interpretations of the world.
— Sheena Iyengar

Everyone is individual, yet we alter our behaviour according to different circumstances. Think about the way you interact with your friends. You don’t treat all your friends the same, do you? Isn’t there someone you know who’s a bit more sensitive than most – so you have to be extra careful not to hurt their feelings. Or what about that member of the family with such thick skin that you need to be blunt?

Everyone’s different. Every situation is different. So, you need to be able to vary your style of negotiating according to who you’re dealing with and according to what you want out of the deal and what you want out of the relationship. Before you can choose which type and style to use, you must think carefully about what you want from the negotiation.

Being aware of different types of negotiation and the different negotiation styles is essential.

Types of Negotiation

Identifying the type of negotiation you are involved in often means the difference between success and a poor outcome. There are three types of negotiation you can choose from which will make the process more productive and successful.

The Quick type is where you need to make a quick decision at the negotiation, the Compromise type is where you are juggling many possible concessions to trade with, and the Deliberate type is where a better outcome is possible using new and creative solutions to develop a more integrative approach.

Negotiation Styles

Negotiation requires parties to interact and communicate. However, there can be a dramatic difference between how much, and how effectively, parties communicate and interact. Communication between parties can be highly challenging or can be less challenging with the parties enjoying a mutually beneficial relationship, based on achieving joint goals.

Focusing on the use of particular negotiation styles in relationships, we began a major research project with Dr. Siggi Gudergan, Professor of Strategy and Associate Dean, Newcastle University and his team, when he was head of the business school at UTS.

The research examined the existing literature on negotiation and current approaches to negotiating styles. From the research, individuals in the B2B world clearly need a valid and reliable assessment tool to provide feedback on their negotiation preferences. In a company, mapping preferences of a person or a negotiating team is a competitive advantage.

Since its inception, the Negotiating with Style© assessment tool has been used across the globe in preparation for negotiations. The negotiation could be a simple contract renewal to a complex B2B multi-issue, multi-party negotiation involving many key stakeholders. In all negotiations the tool can be used for one-on-one coaching. In complex negotiations the tool can be used to select and prepare a negotiating team for a major deal.

This tool examines the two dimensions of assertiveness and cooperation. Cooperation is how you reach agreement on the substantive issues in the negotiation. Assertiveness is about the process applied to reach the outcome based on the relationship with the individual or team with which you were negotiating. Your performance on these two key dimensions determines your preferences and negotiating style.

We are updating our research and as part of this research we are offering the first 10 respondents a free Negotiating with Style profile and telephone debrief. If you would like the opportunity to find out your preferred negotiating style and the impact that will have on your success as a negotiator then click the button below.