When is the last time that you sat down to think about your goals for an upcoming negotiation? If you are like many others, you have not considered this question beyond thinking about price. There is much more to setting negotiation goals than hitting a certain price point.
By setting a goal, you are setting your road-map for success. Studies show that negotiators who take time to set a goal more often reach that goal and are more financially successful. When setting goals, consider these three elements:
- Specific — A specific goal is one that has a defined outcome or objective. You should know exactly what you want and need from the other party, and you should know exactly what you are going to trade-off–or exchange–to reach your goals.
For example, a specific goal might look like this: I want to outline a specific procedure for receiving and responding to requests to make changes to the network.
- Objectively justifiable — An objectively justifiable goal is one that appears reasonable to those knowledgeable about the issue. It can also be supported by facts and figures.
For example, an objective goal might look like this: I want to follow industry security standards when making X type of change to the network.
- Related to your interests — Your interests are the positive, motivating factors for your being at the bargaining table. Your goal must get you closer to those motivating factors.
For example, a goal that is related to your interests might look like this: I want to decrease multiple requests about the same issue from the same customer so I can prioritize the requests based on X factors.
At the end of the day, you need to know what success would look like to your company. That picture is the guiding light and these three elements help you chart and stay on course. As your negotiation goals become clearer for you, you will find ways of achieving your goals, and as a result, you will reap financial rewards.