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Saturday, July 19, 2008

Negotiation Tactics - Part 2

In previous posts, I gave an introduction to negotiation, followed by a look at the three stages of negotiation.

This post, is a follow-up to Negotiation Tactics - Part 1, where we will be looking at several negotiating tactics that you can use in your daily dealings with people.

Negotiation Tactic 3 - Good Guy/ Bad Guy

This technique involves working in pairs with one individual being friendly while the other individual acts in a threatening manner.

The objective of this technique is to give your opponent the illusion that he got a concession from the "good guy".

This technique is often portrayed on television where a "bad cop" acts all unreasonable and aggressive while a "good cop" apologies for the "bad cop" and pleads for compliance.

In real life, parents may often use this technique on their children with the father being the fierce and aggressive disciplinarian while the mother plays the role of the understand parent to gain the compliance of the child with a soothing and gentle request.

Negotiation Tactic 4 - The Red Herring

This technique involves laying a false trail for the other person to follow. You are supposed to create an issue or act offended during the negotiation.

The objective of this endeavor is to distract the other party from the real issue. You may also subsequently use this problem as a trade-off for the real issue in question.

For example, when in deep discussions over contractual issues, raising minor issues with outlining points creates points of contention which could be used as a compromise over the important point.

Another example will be when negotiating over the price of an item. You could raise minor issues like "the design is old", "the product has minor faults" or even "I have a headache or stomachache" to get the shopkeeper to reduce the price.

The way to counter this technique is to be steadfast in your resolve and focus on the main issue at hand. Only then will you not be distracted by the minor issues and fall prey to "The Red Herring".

Do you routinely use these negotiation techniques in your real life?

If you are interested in this post, do consider checking out the related posts in the negotiation mini series.
- An Introduction to Negotiation
- The Three Stages of Negotiation
- Negotiation Tactics - Part 1


Unknown said...

We get lots of 'good cop, bad cop' tactics during our Army training...

There was a interrogation survival training, an instructor will offer you biscuits while another will whack us with everything he has got.

After awhile, we found ourselves warmed up to the 'good guy'... :0

Wenbin Nah said...

Yup, and end up following what the "Good Guy" wants...

This is a typical application of the good guy/bad guy tactic.

Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

i love the red herring style, leaving false trails, but maybenot too good if people find out.

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