Whether you are dealing with a grumpy teenager, putting up with a boss that makes your life miserable, or engaging with a difficult person in another context, knowing some of the techniques employed by successful negotiators can help you steer your encounters in the desired direction. That would be a better result than feeling out of control, wouldn’t it?
When we lose control, we go into crisis mode. We swing between anger and hopelessness. We get frustrated and we fall hostage to our negative and disempowering emotions. That’s not a state of mind you want to be in. There is little to gain when a situation controls you, rather than you being in control. You are better off if you have a method that helps you to author your life, even when it gets tough.
Let’s examine 4 secrets employed by successful negotiators to reach agreement with difficult people:
1. Know What You Want.
Clarity of purpose is key for any successful negotiation. Often, we experience emotions that put us down because our mind is clouded and we are unable to understand what’s going. We wonder what our next step should be. Our mind is fogged. We lack clarity. By the time a negotiator sits down at the table, he or she has already identified specific and desired results the negotiation has to produce. So, ask yourself when confronted with a tough situation: What is it that you really want to achieve? What are your goals?
Having a clear, concrete and measurable answer to this question (which might include clarity about what you are not ready to accept and tolerate) will assist you greatly in dealing with a difficult person or situation.