Everyone handles a negotiation differently, whether they realize it or not. Depending on the situation and the person’s level of bargaining abilities, people will intuitively default to the negotiation skills strategy that seems most comfortable to them.

While you may have a default negotiation style, once you know what approach you typically take, you may tailor your conversation to play to your strengths. Skilled negotiators can adjust to several scenarios. Negotiating with a vehicle salesperson, for example, requires a different set of skills than negotiating a customer contract.

You can define someone’s personal negotiation style by four main elements: creating value, claiming value, empathizing with others, and exerting yourself.

There is no such thing as a good or terrible style, though some can be more effective in specific settings, and the aspects are scales of conduct rather than all-or-nothing characteristics. Knowing your inclinations and how to use them can help you in future talks no matter what circumstance you’re in.

What Are The Four Common Negotiation Styles
negotiation skills
Value Creation

People who add value during negotiations are inventive and constantly seek to widen the pie to share more potential value among themselves and the other negotiating partners. They’re especially good at negotiating multi-issue arrangements or with long-term, recurring clients who have the opportunity to add value.

The first step in this strategy is to learn more about your bargaining partner. To add value, you must first gain a better understanding of the type of outcome clients desire. This information sharing will assist both parties to create trust and feel at ease, which will likely result in a better conclusion in the long term.

If you lean toward value creation, you might benefit from altering your style and trying to claim value in price-driven negotiations, where the potential to create value is slim, and the bottom line is crucial.

Regardless of your style, it would help to consider value and needs when approaching a negotiation. Keep these questions in mind to determine the zone of possible agreement (ZOPA) or bargaining range:

What do I want to achieve in the end? What is the bare minimum that you need to achieve at the bargaining table for the negotiation to be successful? What’s their bottom line? Am I being reasonable with my requests, knowing that they also have to meet similar requirements?

Making a Case for Value

Value claimers excel in price-driven or commercial conversations when the bottom line is paramount, and they seek to claim the majority of the value. Whether you’re a value claimer who also negotiates multi-issue arrangements or with long-term, recurring clients, consider if you can create value instead of claiming what you already have.

These instances are more likely to provide possibilities to grow the pie, and setting a precedent for creating value could strengthen your long-term relationships with consumers and providers, resulting in mutual benefit.

When striving to understand and be practical with your requests, you’ll get the best results.


Empathizers can deal with the arduous task of seeing everyone’s point of view because they recognize the importance of emotions in negotiation. It can be tough to empathize with a bargaining partner, but it is necessary for a successful solution.

The most cooperative method and ideal for problem-solving are to use this negotiation technique. Remember to balance your empathic instincts and your assertiveness, which is critical to attaining a great conclusion. To put it another way, don’t sell yourself short in your drive to help others.

Knowing and understanding what your negotiation partner stands to lose is a valuable weapon when addressing this type of debate.

Making a Claim

People who lean toward assertiveness enjoy taking the lead in discussions. It’s important to assert yourself to get the greatest result for yourself, but don’t forget to think about your counterpart’s point of view as well. To achieve your objectives, you must advocate for yourself while also taking into account the interests of other parties participating in the negotiation.

When employing a powerful negotiation technique, being able to modify your style necessitates both self-awareness and agility. It’s not a sign that you’re a lousy negotiator if you gravitate toward one of these characteristics more than the others. Recognizing which style is most comfortable and being aware of other techniques is essential to becoming a better negotiator.

Take some time to consider your objectives and how to achieve them the next time you’re in a negotiation. Is this a one-time deal, or will you be interacting with your negotiation adversary regularly? Do you have a list of terms to agree on, or are you negotiating a particular issue? Various goals demand different negotiation skills.

10 Tips For Polishing Negotiation Skills

You require strong negotiation skills whether you are searching for a job or are already a leader at your firm. They also follow you outside of work and into your personal life, such as negotiating with a salesperson to get a better deal. “Consider everything as a negotiation opportunity,” the Washington Post advises. To help you become a better negotiator, consider the following abilities:


The first step in negotiating successfully is to prepare. Completely comprehend the situation. Have a firm understanding of what’s at risk and run through all cases. Consider the following questions:

  • What am I trying to gain from this experience?
  • To what extent am I willing to make concessions?
  • Do I have a strong case?
  • Do my requests seem reasonable?
  • What are the most optimistic and pessimistic scenarios?
  • How do you think the other party will react?

Before you start negotiating, make sure you know exactly what you want. Make a strong argument for why the other party should consider your request. This exercise will help you stick to your guns and give your case more credibility.


What are your contingency plans? Even if you don’t obtain everything you asked for, you should rarely go away empty-handed if you conduct your negotiation well. Consider “what is the best alternative?” and be willing to give it as a possibility. Maybe you didn’t get the raise you wanted, but are you alright with being given greater responsibility in the future, which could lead to a promotion and raise?


Set sensible goals, but don’t be afraid to go for the stars. If you honestly believe you deserve something, go ahead and ask for it. Some people recommend asking for more than you want so that your objective appears to be a compromise. Make sure that everything you ask for is exactly what you want.


When negotiating, take your time to ensure that everything goes smoothly.

  • Be sure to cover all of your bases.
  • Listen to the other side.
  • Think about everything that has been said.
  • Don’t rush through negotiation, and don’t be scared to take some time to consider your options before signing a contract.

Proper communication allows you to articulate yourself properly so that the other side understands what you’re asking, is willing to listen to you out, and can reasonably bargain with you. You ought to:

  • Build trust with the other party so that they feel respected and heard.
  • Establish a rapport with them so they can relate to you.
  • Find commonalities with them, so they are more receptive to what you have to offer.
  • Be approachable.
  • Maintain a professional demeanor.
  • Maintain your composure. If things grow hot, the last thing you want to do is lose your cool.

You want the other person to know that they’ve been heard. Listen to what they have to say since their point of view is just as legitimate as yours. Maybe they’ve considered something you haven’t? Perhaps by listening to them, you’ll reconsider your original viewpoint and develop a better solution that benefits both of you.


Being adaptable is often the only way to get an acceptable result. When it comes to compromising, you must be willing to do so. Consider what the other party is ready to contribute, see if it corresponds with your objectives, and applaud the achievement of a well-thought-out compromise. It’s wiser to walk away with your best alternative if your original request isn’t being met.


Every negotiation will not go as planned. Perhaps your supervisor doesn’t have enough money in the budget to give you a raise this year, or maybe that professor genuinely doesn’t have room for another student in their class. To accept these defeats, surrender to the other party, and attempt a different technique next time is the mark of a strong negotiator.

The Solution That Benefits Both Parties

Seek out a win-win scenario. Consider what the other party has to offer you and what you have to offer the other party. How can you be sure that they will also benefit from your desired outcome? What can you do to entice them to work harder?

Training to Improve Negotiation Skills

How can managers and their companies improve the chances that negotiation training will yield long-term benefits? Here is a step-by-step approach:

Get Your Team to Agree on Negotiation Training

This methodology is the only method for a business and its employees to learn how to bargain. Every year, organizations all over the world spend millions of dollars on negotiation training for their personnel. Employees can be trained in-house by consultants and other professionals or attend training programs at universities and other locations. After a couple of days of training, employees return to the office and try to put what they’ve learned into practice. Unfortunately, their newfound knowledge rarely “sticks.” They rapidly forsake the finest bargaining skills they learned during training and replace them with old habits.

Teach Negotiation Mistakes from the Past

Business executives who want to enhance their negotiation skills might learn a lot from the mistakes that have been made in high-profile negotiations. Steven M. Davidoff of the New York Times’ ‘DealBook’ provides one example that might be utilized in negotiating training. He looked at how the US government pushed discussions to salvage Chrysler in 2009, which resulted in an expensive long-term problem.

Hard-Bargaining Skills Should Be Taught

Negotiating abilities are always in demand for dealing with issues that happen at the bargaining table. Expert negotiators understand that their counterpart’s bargaining approach will affect even the best-laid strategies, whether positively or negatively. Hard bargainers should not catch anyone in your organization off guard.

Educate Employees on How Conflicts of Interest Might Affect a Negotiation

When faced with a conflict of interest, it can be difficult for negotiators and other decision-makers to remain unbiased. The special committee of Dell’s board of directors’ actions while the company’s CEO and founder, Michael Dell, proceeded forward with a leveraged acquisition illustrate safeguards you can take when dealing with such difficult situations. Read it here.

Teach How to Use Your Emotions as a Tool

We are trained to look at events objectively and get above our emotions in standard negotiation training. Of course, this technique has value because emotions can impair our judgment. Successful negotiators must have felt the emotion of love at some point in their lives, must have been injured in love at some point in their lives, must have known success, and, probably most importantly, must have known failure. The best negotiators are those who can tell you about their lives.

Negotiation Exercises That Can Be Scored

Simulations enable kids to adapt to new settings (and thus build up their improvisational capabilities). Compared to theoretical teaching techniques such as lectures, current research demonstrates that learners acquire and retain concepts better in experiential learning contexts such as simulations. While scorable simulations have several advantages and disadvantages, simulations, whether scorable or not, can help with negotiation training in various ways.

As Part of Your Negotiation Training, Try Role Playing

Role-playing places participants in hypothetical situations, forcing them to think about and make judgments in novel ways. Individual and group learning can be applied to “real world” settings through role-play simulations. They also give a safe and flexible environment in which to experiment.

Examine an Employee’s Performance Both With and Without Scores

It’s a difficult decision whether or not to grade employee role-play performance, methodology, and outcomes. On the other hand, continuous evaluation offers you an understanding of where gaps exist and how to close them. We also recommend reading some of the top negotiation training books. Negotiation books provide unique insights on frequent bargaining difficulties, whether you’re dealing with coworkers, consumers, or family members.

Ad: PlayAblo’s Enterprise-Grade Micro-Learning platform is built for the corporate learner. Micro-Learning, along with assessments and gamification features, ensures learning outcome measurement along with sustained engagement.
Find out more and request a custom demo!


Effective negotiation gives you the power to fight for what you want—for what’s suitable for you—and even if the negotiation fails, you’ve still made your point. Negotiating your path to success requires knowing what you want, acting professionally, and keeping an open mind.

Ad: PlayAblo’s Enterprise-Grade Micro-Learning platform is built for the corporate learner. Micro-Learning, along with assessments and gamification features, ensures learning outcome measurement along with sustained engagement.
Find out more and request a custom demo!

Comments are closed, but trackbacks and pingbacks are open.