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1. Preparing for a negotiation

Good preparation is critical to being able to achieve your objectives in a negotiation. Preparation consists of 3 main steps: gathering information, identifying your options, and developing and practicing your proposal. Each of these will be addressed in turn.

  1. Gathering Information

    The more important the negotiations, the more time you will want to spend at this stage. Some of the information you will want to gather includes the following:

    • Your goals: What do you want to achieve in the negotiations? Why is this important to you? Why would it be fair for the other side to give this to you?
    • The other side’s position: What do you think the other side wants? What objections do you think they might have to giving you what you want?
    • Your leverage: What do you have that they might want? What is their leverage?
    • The other negotiator: Who will be negotiating on behalf of the other side? What is their negotiating style? What is their background?
    • Others impacted: Is there anyone else who might be impacted by the negotiation? If so, should you obtain their input?
    • External Factors: Are there any external factors you need to consider, such as industry standards, economic conditions or possibly currency fluctuations?
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