Magens Bay --San Thomas

Sunday, November 27, 2011

The art behind negotiation ...

Whether we realize it or not, we are using our negotiation skills every moment of our lives. The wife does the cooking, the husband does the dishes. Sometimes negotiation is done implicitly, sometimes explicitly. Nevertheless, we are all negotiators.

At work, when we are assigned to do multiple assignments, we ask which is the priority. Indirectly, we have initiated the negotiation between us and the management here. Sometimes, we are engaged in a more explicit negotiation where a reward is at stake if we failed to negotiate. Ultimately, we are aiming to win. Sometimes with our hearts set on winning, we are no longer negotiating.

What is negotiation anyway? Let’s take a peek at what Google has to say, “Discussion aimed at reaching an agreement.” Hmmm... Interesting …

We often think negotiating is when we are able to pursue others to accept our opinions and our opinions only. When we win a better deal on the tables, when we are able to overpower the other party, or at the very least, talk the other person into accepting our terms...

Is that really the best way to negotiate? How about meeting others' needs without compromising ours? I thought the definition of negotiation is to reach an agreement based on discussion.

How many times we have found ourselves saying, "Do it because I said so," when our children won't agree to the terms that we put on the table. Perhaps it seems like there is not a right way to reach the agreement but still, none of us won't  budge. Just because we are enforcing our authorities on our children and they may reluctantly agree to our terms. Is this the right way of negotiating?

--courtesy of

If you think negotiation is reaching an agreement instead of an act of winning, then it would not be such an intimidating act after all. It is, in fact, one of the best skills to teach our next generation. It could be as simple as agreeing on what movie to watch, or perhaps which restaurant to dine at, or what time to go practice golf. If we could reach the agreement in a subtle way, we may be able to teach the art of negotiation skill to our next generation. And it may be a gratifying feeling to be able to meet everyone's needs while meeting ours.

Let's pause once in a while in our journeys and reinforce the right way of negotiating, the art behind the negotiation skills, to our next generation. So they, too, can enjoy negotiating without being intimidated. Indulging instead..

Until next stop,
Journey of Life

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