Negotiation is part of everything we do in life and mastering the art of negotiation will see you build stronger relationships and better outcomes for all parties involved.

Whether it is in negotiating a commercial property contract or encouraging your teenager to do their homework, or infant to complete toilet and teeth before bed, the following negotiation strategies will help you get a positive result.

Make MESOs:

According to a 2019 series of studies, making Multiple Equivalent Simultaneous Offers (MESOs) – where someone presents multiple offers of equal value but different composition – is proven to improve negotiation outcomes.

The MESO strategy serves to help you better understand your negotiating partner and their interests, expectations and perspective.

In the studies, MESO recipients perceived the multiple offers to be a more sincere attempt at reaching an agreement. They also lead to positive joint outcomes and a more co-operative negotiation climate.

Be prepared:

A lack of preparation is one of the most common mistakes made in negotiations, causing people to leave value on the table or be taken advantage of, according to Harvard Law School.

Their 27-point negotiation preparation checklist outline a comprehensive strategy to preparing for a negotiation, including knowing what you want to get out of negotiations and the point at which you are prepared to walk away.

Ensure both parties win:

Harvard Law School also states that if both parties are satisfied with the outcome of a negotiation, then it is more likely those parties will develop a positive ongoing relationship.

They even recommend confirming with your counterpart that they are happy with the agreed terms after that agreement has been reached, described as a “post settlement-settlement”.

While this may cause more pain up front, the trust it will instil is more likely to build a solid foundation for future negotiations.

Be Genuine, Honest and Mature:

A negotiation is not an argument and should not be treated as one. If someone in the negotiation begins to be rude, argumentative or immature, it is easy for the entire negotiation to follow suit, leading negotiators to escalate commitment to their chosen positions which more often than not dissolves any benchmarks reached, stalling the negotiation and eroding the foundation upon which the negotiation is based. .

Ensure you take the high road and remain calm, respectful and genuine. People are more likely to view a course of action as less risky, and therefore more acceptable, if it is suggested by someone they trust.

Retaining integrity is critical. People know when others are being disingenuous or manipulative and negotiations will likely break down. This also applies to applying (or succumbing to) excessive pressure to agree on certain terms, which is likely to do more harm than good.

Provide a warm drink and a soft chair:

If you are meeting in person to negotiate, provide your counterpart(s) with a warm drink and a soft chair before negotiations begin. A study published in the Journal of Science found that participants who briefly held a cup of hot (versus iced) coffee had more trust and were warmer people and softer negotiators.

And in another study, those sitting in a soft chair were also found to be softer negotiators, with a hard chair leading to “increased rigidity in negotiations”.

Ensure no one is hungry:

2019 research conducted at Cornell University and discussed by Harvard Law School found that being hungry lead people to having a “greater sense of entitlement than those who had just eaten”.

Being hungry leads people to focus on their own immediate needs at the cost of others and could lead to their behaving unethically and selfishly.

So next time you are sitting down to negotiate, ensure all parties begin the negotiation with a full stomach and consider catering the negotiation to ensure everyone keeps hunger at bay.

COVID 19 – Pine Property Tenant Retention Services:

Due to the current COVID 19 coronavirus situation, Pine Property is seeing an increase in tenants seeking softer lease terms (Rent Relief)  to accommodate for the challenging national / global economic environment.

This is a challenging time for both landlords and tenants and it is important for all parties to have some clarity going forward, however a complete lease re-negotiation is not recommended, nor feasible and not beneficial for either the lessee or the landlord.

Pine Property can be engaged to assist Landlords in negotiating appropriate relief terms, incapsulated in an interim binding agreement, providing mutually beneficial outcomes for both parties:

Benefits of which include:

  • Provide both parties with security of tenure.
  • No impact on current lease status protecting Lessor positions and capital value.
  • Ensure the lessee has assurance and clarity around agreed relief positions and structure.
  • Creates an interim binding agreement on both parties providing certainty during this period of immense uncertainty.

If you are a tenant or landlord and interested in learning more in our tenant / property retention services, please contact us.

Suggested Articles