You Need To Learn Negotiation

by Matthew on June 23, 2011

Whether or not you realize it, you’re always negotiating and will be for the rest of your life; you might as well work to get better at it. Good negotiation skills will improve your awareness and enrich your personal and business prospects. Especially if you’re looking to escape the rat-race, basic negotiation skills are a must.

Any first-year law school contracts student can tell you that if you’re on the lookout, it’s almost maddening how many mini-contracts and negotiations take place all around us all the time. Ever buy a car, home, or even an old lawnmower at a flea market? You were negotiating.

Submit a project proposal to a client? Interview for a job? Ask for a raise at work? Your negotiation skills (or lack thereof) played a role.

Mrs. ARR and I have often talked about how market principles and negotiations apply even (especially?) to dating and the western marriage process. If you’re ever out at dinner and see a couple obviously on an early date, don’t mistake this for merely a budding romance. In fact you’re also seeing preliminary negotiations. Consider many people’s lack of experience with principles of negotiation plus the emotional element of romantic relationships and you can see some obvious challenges to the parties involved. Think a couple’s negotiations end with an exchange of rings? Don’t fool yourself.

Plenty of materials are available to study negotiation and learn some basic principles. Some time back, I spent a worthwhile day in a class taught by Marty Latz and followed that up by reading his book cover-to-cover. If you’re looking for a place to start, start there. (I don’t directly gain anything from the recommendation, I just think it’s excellent content.)

I’ve made it my goal to continuously develop my negotiation skills by actively applying some common principles and learn from my mistakes as I go along.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Ashley June 26, 2011 at 8:04 pm

As a very shy person, I’m definitely not usually a negotiator. It’s easier for me to just give in. I was very proud of myself for negotiating my salary at my new job. I got $11,000 more than they offered me!

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Matthew June 26, 2011 at 8:07 pm

Nice job Ashley! Negotiation skills at work!

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