Note to Sales #15. The Golden Rule of Negotiation: Never give anything away
Posted: 1st February 2016
In business negotiations if you give something away it moves control to the other party and devalues your proposition.
Unfortunately I see it all the time in our business. You negotiate the deal with the client and you present it to Credit Committee. It’s agreed and you go back to the client with the final offer. At the eleventh hour he states the he wants the fee reduced. You don’t want to lose the deal so you come back to CC to ask for a reduction.
This says to me that the deal hadn’t been properly agreed in the first place and that you were selling on price when you should have been selling on service.
Look at the negotiation process as a set of scales:
If both parties are to be happy with the deal then the scales will balance. It can be balanced slightly in one parties favour but if it’s too lopsided then it’s likely that one party will walk away.
But what happens if the scales are balanced, everyone is happy, and then the other party wants to change the deal? Well, you need to rebalance the scales – you get to get something back in your favour.
A simple example:
- The client wants a reduction in the fee.
- You agree but on the basis that the term is extended by 6 months.
If a client comes to you to change the deal in their favour it should be instinctive for you to think “what will I get back?”