AESOP’S FABLES: THE LION, THE DONKEY AND THE FOX
A lion, a donkey and a fox decided to form a hunting party. They tracked, caught, and killed an enormous stag. The lion said to the donkey: “Divide up the spoils so we can eat. I’m hungry.” The donkey divided the stag into three equal portions. When the lion saw the portions, he roared angrily, pounced on the donkey, and killed him. Looking at the fox, the lion said, “Now it’s your turn. Divide the stag into two parts.” The fox looked over at the mauled carcass of the donkey, took a small mouthful of meat, and pushed the remaining pieces of the stag towards the king of beasts. The lion nodded in approval and asked, “who taught you to negotiate so well?” the fox glanced again at the dead donkey and replied, “Why, my belated friend over there taught me everything I know.”
We can learn by the misfortunes of others.
Like the Boys’ Scouts, when you negotiate, be prepared, be patient, and pay attention!
When you sit down to negotiate, be prepared, be patient, and be all ears.
Many businessmen and managers believe that the business world is a sea full of sharks, and they are mostly right. The ability of an organization to survive within it lies in the power to make wise decisions and also know when to back down. It is not enough to simply know what you want; you need to know what the other party wants and why they want it. You can only know all this when you are patient and attentive.
Bob Woolf author of “Friendly Persuasion” offers the following important rules for negotiating:
1. Make sure the person across the table has the authority to sign off on the deal.
2. Create a good atmosphere
3. Dress for respect
4. Lose your ego, be self-effacing, and don’t take anything personally
5. Deal in good faith. Have the attitude: “I’m going to make a deal today.”
6. Do your homework.
7. Realize that almost everything is negotiable
8. Keep the word demand out of your vocabulary, and never issue ultimatums; it puts a strain on your negotiations
9. Constantly reassess your leverage
10. Keep a record of each negotiating session.
11. Don’t negotiate when you’re tired
12. Do your research as to what is equitable.