Being extreme in negotiation

Polarization (or being extreme) is mainly anti negotiation. Or is it?

A strong ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ at the start can be used to establish a strong position. Also, it is used to set the boundaries of the negotiation process. In most cases, however, it will lead counterparts to a dead end right from the beginning.
Therefore, this position will need to be softened and polished to be able to commence the negotiation process with a more successful attitude: neutrality and respect.

We can, for instance, make the following analogy: polarization could be compared to the Haka dance in a New Zealand stadium. It frightens, intimidates or impresses the other rugby team before playing by the rules. You feel the aggression (or this is what you perceive), but the match is fair and square.
Meeting our negotiation partner in doubt, having no clear statement or having no set goal is another thing, but in most cases polarization is seen as being not cooperative and being too perseverant and most probably will have a negative emotional response.

Instead of polarization, assertiveness is a quality that we can use to make our statements or requirements clear to the other party. Being straightforward and direct in a respectful manner is another way of making sure we are taken seriously.

When we need to negotiate we need the ability to see through the eyes of our counterpart and demonstrate a neutral empathy, whereas an extreme position could in the first place avert any form of compromise.

Negotiation requires a strong and disciplined mind but also some flexibility and some ”out of the box thinking”. This is why I wanted to clarify the use of polarization. As a conclusion, I would say that you can definitively obtain what you want using your brain and your guts.

Veronika Beaussant
I.N.A (Integrative Negotiation Approach)

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