In this Expert Insight Interview, Mark Raffan discusses negotiations. Mark Raffan is an entrepreneur, procurement veteran, speaker, recognized negotiation expert, and creator of the Negotiations Ninja Podcast.
This Expert Insight Interview discusses:
- The misconceptions about negotiations and how Mark Raffan defines the concept
- Why stepping away from negotiations is often the best course of action
- The importance of a well-developed pipeline
Many people have misconceptions about what a negotiation is. Dictionaries define negotiation as a process in which two or more parties come together to coordinate and communicate to achieve a mutually beneficial outcome.
Mark Raffan’s take on negotiations is a little different because even if you don’t come out with the desired outcome or walk away, you are still involved in a negotiation. Just because you haven’t reached a deal doesn’t mean a negotiation hasn’t happened.
Most people feel they should make deals, even if those deals are not in their best interest. And this is a perilous position to put yourself in because that way, you are succumbing to a lot of potential manipulation.
What ends up happening with many people is that they feel like they have to make a deal. This is primarily the result of poor pipelines, but just because you’ve negotiated and haven’t come to an agreement doesn’t necessarily mean that you haven’t gotten value. Walking away from a bad deal is often significantly better than getting involved in one.
Particularly in sales, people tend to go into a negotiation feeling like they’re in a position of weakness from the get-go because they perhaps don’t feel like they can walk away. For many people, that fundamentally comes down to their inability to effectively communicate their needs and wants in a negotiation.
This is often the result of having a poorly developed pipeline. The strength of having an excellent pipeline cannot be overstated. The problem with a lot of negotiations is that the work wasn’t done properly upfront in the early stages of the engagement because we like to move things along our pipeline very fast.
John is the Amazon bestselling author of Winning the Battle for Sales: Lessons on Closing Every Deal from the World’s Greatest Military Victories and Social Upheaval: How to Win at Social Selling. A globally acknowledged Sales & Marketing thought leader, speaker, and strategist. He is CSMO at Pipeliner CRM. In his spare time, John is an avid Martial Artist.