Dispute Resolution

Negotiation Skills To Become A More Successful Negotiator

Negotiating skills

In order to be successful in any field, you need to have the best set of skills. The same is the case in negotiation. One needs to have an optimum set of negotiating skills in order to achieve the desired result.  Negotiating skills refer to inbuilt qualities which help two or more parties to agree to a common coherent solution. At the nucleus, negotiation skills include back-and-forth communication for the conclusion to a dispute between two or more parties.


To know further about negotiating skills, one must know about negotiations. The word “negotiation” is taken from the derivation of the Latin term “negotiatus” which means “to carry business”. Negotiation in simplest terms means redressal for disputes. In this process, the parties to the dispute try to resolve the conflict without the interference of any 3rd person. The main aim of negotiation is to settle disputes by viewing the issues and concerns of the parties. The process of negotiation has no fixed rules and is of a predictable nature.  Also, in this mode of redress, there are huge opportunities for the presentation of cases.

 Negotiation is an essential part of any kind of problem-solving, dispute resolution, and joint action. It may also be verbal, explicit, implicit, direct, nonverbal, or through mediators. Negotiation is a bargaining process between parties where both seek to reach an agreement. This is done in order to settle a matter of mutual concern or resolve a dispute.

Basic negotiation skills:-

  1. Communication: Communication is the back of negotiation. You need a commendable amount of communication skills to decide the chance of nailing the negotiation. It involves using the right words, recognizing the nonverbal signs and expressing thoughts in a persuasive and engaging way. Without being expressing too much, you need to communicate the right message to the party. A healthy conversation ensures a mutually beneficial deal and avoids misunderstanding which, if left unchecked, prevent the parties from reaching a consensus.
  2. Strategy: There are many instances where the other party disagrees with the resolution you provide. Due to this, Good negotiators frequently come with one or more plans. Before entering into a negotiation, a negotiator needs to consider all solutions to the problem. For example, when negotiating ones salary, the HR manager may refuse to increase your dearness allowance (DA). So, instead of focusing on the DA, you could ask for better retirement or HRA.
  3. Planning: A proper planning before the negotiation ensures the long-term consequences of the negotiation terms. Planning is helpful during the negotiation process and ensures the successful implementation of the decision.
  4. Persuasion: Successful negotiators have the power to influence the decisions of other parties. Unless you possess good persuasion skills, it becomes very difficult to justify how your solution to the dispute will benefit both parties. Persuasion skills are the key factor which decides whether the other party agrees to your solution.
  5. Listening: Active listening is also a key factor to a successful negotiator. This ensures the other parsty about your calmness and patience as you listen to the other party and understand what they are trying to convey. Many a times, negotiators are active listeners. This helps them to understand the other party’s message. 

    Read Also – A Lawyer’s Guide to Successful Negotiation

Additional Skills

  1. Problem solving: Most negotiations arise in order to find a solution to an issue. Having excellent problem-solving skills helps you to propose viable and intelligent solutions. These are very much influential and beneficial for both the aggrieved parties.
  2. Emotional Intelligence: The ability to control and manage emotions and understand other party’s emotions are important in negotiations. This factors acts as a key difference between a successful negotiator and an unsuccessful one. People having high emotional intelligence (EI) can precisely perceive and express their emotion, identify others’ emotions and use these emotions to facilitate solutions.
  3. Expectation management; good negotiators usea system of management that makes them adaptable to any new and unexpected situations. They maintain a balance between a strong and aggressive negotiator and calm and passive negotiator.
  4. Adaptability: Adaptability is a compulsory skill for a successful negotiator. As each negotiation is unique and the situations within a same negotiation may change from one day to the next. It becomes necessary to adjust the planning and management according to the situations. This makes a difference between negotiators. Good negotiators have better adaptability and understanding to these situations than others..
  5. Rapport building: The ability to build rapport is also a determining factor for a good negotiator. Rapport building lets you create relationships with others where both sides have a comman understanding to each other. There must be effective communication of goals in order to build a rapport. One needs to understand other side’s needs and wants. Rapport helps ease anxiety, encourages partnership and increases the chances of reaching an impasse. Showing respect and using active listening are also critical skills to build rapport.

Negotiation skills: benefits

  1. Builds a relationship: Despite the difference in opinion, negotiation skills helps in achieving a solution. It also helps in focusing more on creating value and goodwill. This creates a long-term relationship.
  2. Delivers excellent solutions: excellent negotiation skills ensure solutions to the conflicts which are long term in nature. It aims on creating long-lasting solutions in order to save the trouble of both parties to resolve the issue if it comes again. Good negotiation skills ensure that the solution reached for the parties is in the best nature of both the parties.
  3. Avoids future conflicts: As both parties agree to a common solution, the chances of future conflicts reduce to a great extent.
  4. Create an environment of business success: Good negotiation skills ensure the accomplishment of business goals, which creates an environment of business success. This also increases the chances of future business transaction.

Our thoughts

In order to have successful negotiations, negotiators need to possess good negotiation skills. These skills enhance dispute resolution and help in a better quality of decisions and negotiations. In today’s world, people generally tend to avoid going through a lengthy, costly, and public trial. ADRs act as a better alternative to these trials. Negotiation is also one of them.

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by Sushree Swagatika

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