Updated: Mar 8
Negotiation can be approached in a variety of different ways, but some styles are more effective (and less obnoxious) than others. Do you "get results" but don't get invited to many parties?
Does the thought of saying no have you updating your CV in terror? Perhaps your many years of sales experience mean that you already know everything there is to know about negotiation?
Take our tongue-in-cheek quiz to discover what type of negotiator you are...
1. You need to say something that is likely to elicit a strong, negative emotional response in an important client. How do you feel?
A. Concerned. Do I really have to upset them? Is there another "win-win" option here?
B. Excited. I love a good scrap and usually get what I want.
C. Zen. I don't really feel emotions during commercial conversations. When you've been in the game as long as I have, you just learn to shut that stuff out.
D. Thoughtful. Setting boundaries and saying no is sometimes necessary, but I'd carefully plan how I did this. The right questions could help me validate why they are angry, and a pre-prepared proposal could help move us on from a potential argument.
2. The other side have opened the negotiation with a threat to terminate your contract if key demands - which you could never agree to - are not met. How do you respond?
A. I'd probably freeze. Give them what they want maybe? Or not?
B. If they want a fight, they will have come to the right place.
C. I've heard it all before and nothing surprises me. Let them sound off and then take it to my boss for a decision.
D. Hear them out and ask lots of questions, which will probably include the words why, how and what if. Hopefully their answers will signal potential concessions and allow us to construct a deal that gives them some of what they want, but on my terms.
3. How would your friends describe you?
A. Thoughtful, considerate, a people person
B. Tough, courageous, uncompromising
C. Experienced, wise, respected, senior
D. Open, curious, genuine
4. How would your worst enemy describe you?
A. I don't really have any enemies
B. Aggressive, intimidating
C. Arrogant, boorish, complacent
D. Challenging, formidable
Mostly As: You are a Cautious Negotiator. Like many people, you prefer to avoid conflict with others and may find difficult conversations stressful. The good news here is that a few simple tools and the right negotiation preparation can both improve the outcomes you achieve and make the whole process a lot less daunting. Check out our Negotiation Essentials and One Day Negotiation programs for more information.
Mostly Bs: You are a Macho Negotiator. The 1970s called: they want their negotiation tactics back! You revel in being the table-thumping "bad cop" and have carefully cultivated a reputation for being tough with suppliers, customers or anybody who looks at you the wrong way in Wetherspoon's. If you agree not to start shouting at us, we'd love to help you discover your softer side.
Mostly Cs: You are a Know-All Negotiator. You've been there, seen it, done it and got the T-shirt. You were thrashing out deals when the rest of the world was still at school. If you can get over yourself for long enough (our shortest courses are 2 hours), then we'd love to challenge you on one of our Advanced Skills negotiation courses.
Mostly Ds: You are a Brass Tacks Negotiator. You are curious about what makes the other side tick and skilled in trading the right concessions at the right time. You're assertive when required, but don't revel in conflict for its own sake. Good for you!