Comparing typical negotiation meetings for a distributive and an integrative situation reveals different stages. It is important to consider different strategies for the stage of meetings.
Stage of Meeting in negotiation
1. Opening offer. Whether too high or too low, the opening offer influences the outcome and research suggests that a high opening offer often results in a higher agreement . The message the opening offer sends to the other party may immediately erect a barrier to reaching agreement, or may indicate that you are open to lengthy discussion.
2. Opening stance The altitude of mind adopted supports the opening offer made. A tough stance generally supports a high opening offer, whereas a friendlier stance supports a more reasonable bargaining position.
3. Bargaining The pattern of concessions, especially at the beginning of the negotiation, also send messages to the other party about the competitiveness of the situation: small concessions indicate a more competitive position, bigger concessions indicate greater flexibility! Concessions are the central component of the negotiation as they represent rp~ movement between the parties. A competitive negotiation is often considered satisfactory by the parties when they feel they have progressively reached an agreement. Clearly, it is important to have planned how concessions are to be made.
4. Final offer When there is no more room for concessions, this is as far as the party can go.
5. Agree the outcome Gain commitment to implement the deal.
Negotiation Strategy in stage of meeting
1. Identify and define the problem: This is often the most difficult stage in an integrative situation. The key points for consideration are:
- Define a mutually acceptable problem – one which accurately reflects the situation, rather than inflates it. State the problem in practical terms – summarized for greatest clarity.
- Identify obstacles to achieving the goal and focus on common interests.
- First understand the problem, then work on the solution. If solutions are identified before the problem is fully identified, then there is a risk is of solving the wrong problem!
2. Generate alternative solutions. It may help to redefine the problem in order to create win-win. It will ertainly help if there is a wide range of different variables that can be used as options by the parties.
3. Evaluate alternatives. Select .the best alternatives from the range identified at stage 2. Options may evaluated by:
- Narrowing the range of acceptable options.
- Prioritizing options on the basis of quality, acceptability to the parties and any performance standards they meet.
- Agreeing a set of criteria by which to evaluate alternatives. Being willing and able to justify preferences for options.
- Being explicit about any influences on selection criteria, such as ethical or legal dilemmas.
- Using colleagues to evaluate options where they are complex.
- Taking time to consider selection.
4. Agree the outcome. Bundle issues together, rather than agree sequentially, and do not agree individual issues until all aspects are considered. Because this can create considerable complexity, it is also worth keeping formality to a minimum until agreement is reached, then recording the final deal.