A good negotiator needs not just a repertoire of strategies, tactics and techniques, but also the experience to know when and how to deploy them.
One strategy – the concession strategy – lies at the heart of every negotiation as it determines how you can manage the way a negotiation plays out. Yet the concept and the actual reality of putting it into practice seem to be difficult to match up.
It is a moveable feast of what we can and cannot accept, combined with how we manage what we need to negotiate, and a planned means, that helps us reach the end goal in a way that maximises our success. In my experience, the concession strategy is the least planned-for and most-avoided component of negotiation preparation.
As a procurement leader, it is important to ask the following questions: What do I know about our suppliers? What should I know that I don’t?
Most businesses can tell you anything you want to know about their cust
omers. Not only do companies know who their customers are, organisations also know their clients’ wants and needs, purchasing patterns, risks and priorities, contract terms and committed service levels. Businesses are expected to know what a customer pays versus what they are supposed to pay, as well as which type of customer will pay more for specific items and those that will pay less. To put it simply, they understand the detailed financial implications of a change in any customer relationship.