How team members applied the steps in preparation for opening statements in negotiation.
The first step we made in our group was knowing our strategy. Knowing the most suitable strategy to close the most favorable deal for your party. The outcomes we projected from the deal and our counterparties’ expectations would help us come up with the best negotiation style we can leverage on. We considered between integrative and distributive negotiation approaches (Benetti et al., 2021).
Distributive negotiation approach or the ‘fixed pie strategy’ creates a win-lose scenario. This is an individualistic negotiation approach where each party looks to independently win the deal. Negotiating parties in these approach perceive each other as opponents (Ogliastri et al., 2020). Distributive approach is created by a scenario where the resource to be negotiated on is terminable. The winning party on this approach leverages on their strength, bargaining power, and volatility of the opponent. Our team chose not to utilize distributive negotiation approach since it is defensive and likely to create worst outcome scenario for us.
Integrative negotiation approach enables both parties get an advantage out of a deal. The outcomes of integrative negotiation should be mutually benefiting and agreed upon by both negotiating parties. This negotiation approach generates value rather than claiming it. According to Benetti et al. (2021), Fair procedures during negotiations deal is a major aspect in integrative negotiations deals to close an equitable deal. Unlike the distributive negotiation the parties perceive each other as partners rather than opponents. Since our group signaled less bargaining power integrative negotiation approach was our best deal. In our group we decided to use integrative approach of negotiating to trade in a suitable deal for us.
The second step was to identify our outcome goal from the negotiation. Our party needed to know if it needed to optimize on the short-term value of the deal or long-term collaboration. Understanding what to settle for when going in a deal prevents exploitation by the contending party (Brezak et al., 2019). We identified that there was a great margin between our interests and those of our counterparties. We had to foster high total outcome potential before we could even enter the deal. Our team needed higher joint benefit where both parties are certain of additional value and benefit.
Components of the opening statements
The first step in our teams’ negotiating statements was introducing ourselves to the other negotiating team. Each of the three of us stood up, said their names, and their roles in the team. Our opponent team also introduced themselves to us. We sought a collective relationship with the opposing group during the negotiations (Deep et al, 2019). Opening statements by both parties allows joint discussion before actual negotiations commence. We then thanked the other party for accepting to participate in the negotiation. Our team was the first to offer the opening statements according to the protocol of the negotiation.
Our team counsel then highlighted our intention of arriving to outcomes that are mutually beneficial. Our counsel also announced that mutual respect was expected and a resolution that was considerate of both parties. Creating rapport with the opposing party and establishing a pattern of rules to govern the negotiation leads to a mutually positive negotiation outcome (Jansson, 2020). Our counsel set ground for civil and productive negotiations. Our opening statements made what we expected from the deal understood by our opponents. After the joint opening statements from both parties we now needed to establish the ground rules.
Ground rules for the negotiation.
Both parties came to a consensus of the ground rules to facilitate a smooth bargaining process. The ground rules were set by a joint effort of both parties. Every party wrote the ground rules that were set by the joint team. The ground rules were to overlook that timing was observed during the negotiation.
- The rules allowed equal time share for speakers from both sides of the negotiation.
- The rules also opposed use of electrical or any other disruptive devices during the negotiation.
- Only one speaker at a time would be allowed during the negotiation for example no distraction when an opposing speaker was still talking.
- No foods or drinks would be allowed in the negotiation room.
- No communication between membership was allowed during the negotiation.
- Integrative approach was to be used during the negotiation.
After the opening statement, the counsel of the other party proposed the agenda for the negotiation meeting. An agenda is a list of projected goals an agreed upon by both sides of a negotiation. Our counsel introduced our agenda to the opposing side and since we were on the weaker side our agenda was surprisingly declined by the opposing side. Our team was hit by panic after our agenda was turned down. However, we were offered with a good deal at the outcomes of the negotiation. Integrative approach helped us seal a favourable deal even at a disadvantage.
Future benefit of reaching an agreement
When both parties gain out of a negotiation, there is a ‘win-win’ situation and they agree to make a deal. After the back and forth between the two negotiating teams coming with a common ground of understanding is the core role of negotiation. Integrative approach presented both teams in our negotiation a mutually beneficial agreement (Ogliastri et al., 2020). Having a win-lose mentality by either party can potentially hinder reaching an agreement. It is therefore important that both teams gain out of a negotiation for a common agreement.
How team members can improve their steps
Team members can improve their confidence to foster positive outcomes out of future negotiations. Improving belief in abilities by team members when setting goals with improve negotiation advantages. Confidence in negotiations can overrule a disadvantage or less negotiating power (Biggar, 2021). Approaching and participating in negotiations with high confidence improve the outcome of the negotiation. High confidence to uphold high goal will maximize value I and my counterparts can achieve out of a deal.
Team members will invest more time and energy in improving negotiation skills to avoid panic attack during negotiations. Schober (2017) imply that improving the skills by team members will help expand the pie and improve value of the deal team members leave the table with. The team is willing to explore real-life examples of negotiations to gunner more negotiation experience. Communication, planning, and emotional intelligence are the negotiation skills the team is working to improve on.
In our first negotiation we were unable to clearly express our goals in the negotiation. Poor communication skill cause key components of discussion such as a goal to be overlooked. For every team to leave the negotiation satisfied, the goals of both teams should be looked into with equal weight. Assertive communication is best communication method to adopt compared to passive and aggressive communication (Bigger, 2021). Learning to be assertive communicators will help team members to be more confident and considerate. Effective communication skills enable team players to moderate the negotiations and work toward an agreeable solution. Improving communication skills will aid members to clearly articulate their thoughts and actively listen to others’ opinion and interest.
The team did not effectively plan ahead on goals we needed to achieve to include an alternative. In planning it is important the team set negotiation boundaries and focus on important terms of the deal. Our team intends to include Zone of Possible Agreement (ZOPA) in our next negotiation. ZOPA or the bargaining zone offers a range of deal that both sides of the negotiators are likely to agree upon. Planning a positive bargaining zone offer terms that are equally favorable to both parties. Acknowledging and understanding best alternative is important to win a negotiation agreement.
In case during negotiations the agreements lead our team to a negative bargaining zone, our team intends to utilize Best Alternative To a Negotiated Agreement (BATNA). BATNA provides the best alternative negotiating party can opt for in case negotiations fail. BATNA should be considered when negotiations are planned. BATNA maintains reservation price while providing negotiating power when negotiations go wrong. BATNA prevents a no deal scenario where both parties leave the negotiating table empty handed. Having a back-up plan when going into a deal guarantee successful negotiations and an advantage in case the initial plan backfires.
Using emotional intelligence to use the opposing team to our advantage will take our negotiation skills to the next level (Jansson, 2020). For example, team members can promote positive feelings to improve certitude during negotiations. Feelings of panic can be turned to excitement and promote confidence by team members. Emotional intelligence can also be empirically used to read emotions by other parties. Reading emotions of other party whilst regulating self-emotions will help our team have total control of the negotiations. Learning how to study emotions into our advantage will capacitate our team achieve advantages in future negotiations.
When formulating a negotiation plan, it is important to also set goals higher than what we can achieve. Stretching goals higher than our expectations is a strategy aimed to cripple opponent to give in our demands (Kumar & Antony, 2018). When offers are higher, and opposers fall short we are more likely to land a deal close or slightly above our expectations. Higher goals in negotiation mitigate risks that may arise in the deal.
It is also important to know and understand the opposing party before negotiations. Create a rapport with the other negotiators improve positive feeling and trust between negotiators. Fostering trust move the other negotiators to be more open in their interests which we can leverage on (Flannery & Turner, 2019). Personal relationships with the other negotiators also enhance the likelihoods of achieving mutual agreements. In negotiation, rapport is a significant predictor of how much trust negotiators establish in order to achieve integrative agreements.
Outcome of the negotiation
In our case the outcome of the negotiation was satisfactory as our team achieved the goals targeted. The satisfaction of negotiating process links with the outcome of the impacts. The joint decision at the concluding of the negotiation should be accepted by all parties.Due to the compromising and the flexible nature of negotiations, outcomes are however likely to differ. Our team evaluated success of the negotiation using a scorecard of varying issues achieved during the negotiations. The common benefits we considered in our score card are: alignment with target goals, short-term vs long-term benefits, and learnings from the negotiations. The success of these negotiation also measured abilities of the team members. Our group used the Negotiation Evaluation Survey to scale level of success in the negotiation.
The Negotiation Evaluation Survey NES measured the critical and analytical skills we used in our negotiations. The NES addresses conceptual and methodological issues common in a more typical training evaluation techniques. In our scenario, the negotiation was a win/win conflict where every party gained an advantage. The NES differentiated viewpoints from needs and interests (Flannery & Turner 2019). The NES proved our negotiation to be creative and productive. The NES organizes information in a useful manner to determine either positive or negative emotions.
The NES also measures the behavioral and communication skills of the negotiators. Our behavior in the negotiation was defensive compared to our opponents which was attacking.
Sharing information to illustrate preferences and intended goals of the two parties makes negotiation easy. Asking questions for clarity during negotiations is also vital for clarity and also a mutully beneficial agreement, asking questions. The impact of the agreement is long lasting as the two parties came to a concensus for successful outcome. The satisfaction is defined particularly in regard of the set goals and the outcomes of the negotiation process.
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