Emotions and empathy play a vital role in negotiations, whether in business or in politics. Emotional awareness can steer prejudices and it can also give self-control. Sometimes, classic negotiation skills fail, and to demonstrate poise and control, one must use inner emotions to land a good deal. Experts argue that emotions have no place in negotiations because they make people seem weak. However, it is possible to control emotions and use them to your advantage. Many people fear negotiations, and rather than finding a way to deal with their inner feelings, they clank up. Here are some excellent guidelines to help you put emotions to good use in a negotiation.
Nervousness – a feeling that can be controlled
Believe it or not, nervousness is a feeling that can be controlled in a negotiation. Make your anxiety become curiosity by attentively listening to your opponents. Pay attention to everything they say, as body language, words, and variations in their vocal tone can help you make an opinion. An observant negotiator is able to spot opportunities for mutual agreements, so it’s certainly a good idea to ward off your concerns and focus on the facts. According to some experts, when you’re deeply attentive, the mind “forgets” about feelings such as nervousness and concern. For a negotiator to attain emotional balance, he must ward off all his fears by focusing on the speech or presentation of his opponent.
Take a break
Experienced negotiators know how to cool off when things heat up in a negotiation. Taking a break is one of the most effective ways of dealing with your emotions. There are times when deals don’t go as planned, and although you are not nervous in the beginning, you may start developing some feelings of angst as things move forward. Skilled business people have the capacity and the expertise to intimidate an opponent. They can throw your confidence out the window in a matter of seconds. In this scenario, it’s best to ask for a recess. A short break will help you calm down; your team should be there for moral support, too.
Anger can be an asset
Provided that you use anger strategically, it can become your strongest weapon. Some people are more productive when they’re angry; they have better ideas and they’re not afraid of dealing with unpredictable circumstances. In some scenarios, anger can be used as an indicative of your toughness. An attitude that’s hard-hitting may intimidate an opponent, and therefore your persuasion abilities will be greatly improved. As much as we want to believe that anger can be an asset in negotiations, it is important to know your limits. We’re talking about a feeling that can scare business partners and associates when it becomes too extreme.
Anxiety – the perfect recipe for success in business
Anxious people usually end up losing negotiations. Why? Because it’s simple for an opponent to sense that you’re afraid. Fear leads to a wealth of other unpleasant feelings, and in the end you may agree to a bargain that can’t possibly benefit your company. Don’t let your nerves get the best of your when negotiating, and use your anxiety to reap great benefits. Generally speaking, important decisions entail increased levels of hesitation, and trying to come up with a mutual agreement may lead to apprehension. Be lucid and don’t let emotions interfere with your logical way of thinking. The best way to make your anxiety help you win negotiations is to forget it exists.
While anxiety, anger, and nervousness are perfectly understandable emotions people feel in a negotiation, we can’t say the same thing about fear. Ironically, fear is more common than the other three, and it usually has dreadful effects on your self-esteem. Do you usually feel your heart pounding at the mere thought of bargaining with someone? You may be afraid of negotiations, and this unpleasant emotion won’t help you build connections and close good deals. If you can’t control your emotions when dealing with employees, investors, and customers, you might need some negotiation training; the best way to control emotions is to block them out of your system. Fear is a useless emotion in business. There’s absolutely no reason for you to be afraid of your opponent. Rather than let fear affect your judgment, focus on the facts and be rational.
By Jason Phillips and TheGapPartnership.com!