“In which restaurant are we going to eat tonight?” “In which country will we spend our summer holiday?” “Which film are we going to watch?“
Questions like this, you will face almost every day or at least on a regular basis. Therefore, it is important to be able to negotiate well, in order to reach your desired outcome. If you prefer Chinese food to Japanese, rather visit Stockholm than spend your vacation on the beach in Italy, or prefer a horror movie to a romantic film, then you need to be able to find good arguments and negotiate well, so that you persuade your (negotiation) partner to vote for your choice.
Negotiations also take place in situations where a negative outcome affects your life more dramatically. Sometimes the effect can be more than short time irritation such as being angry at your partner since he/she won and you need to watch a film you do not want to see or eat a meal you probably would not eat on your own. Negotiations can take place at an important stage of your life. There are important decisions for life and opportunities you need to seize, such as job interviews, salary negotiations or negotiations with a letting agent or real estate broker.
In this kind of negotiations, the desired outcome is probably more important than in the ones mentioned above: You might want to find a good job, earn a lot of money, and find an appropriate apartment or house that you most likely will not want to change after a short time again. Therefore, in such negotiations the outcome is even more important, even though these negotiations only take place a couple of times during your life, compared to the every-day negotiations.
But what can you do in order to become a better negotiator? Well, that is very easy. You need to train negotiations on a regular basis. In Austria, for instance, a good opportunity is to participate in the meetings of the AFA Business Negotiation Club organized by UNYSA-Austria-AFA. The club takes place every week in Vienna but sessions are being offered in other cities too, and as online modules so that people from all over the world can join. In such sessions, participants have the chance to practice and train their negotiation skills in a protected area, in which negative results will not affect their daily life, but the positive effects of the training will result in better outcomes in real life.
And now, we are also speaking about a daily basis that is important to you. Negotiation Training must not necessarily help you win the decision which movie you are going to watch every evening, but will also help your boss, for whom you are going to negotiate, every week in your company with business partners. After a couple of negotiations you will quickly realize that it is possible to win a negotiation while the other person, your negotiation partner, also wins. You now think “well, this cannot be true” but I tell you, a ‘win-win’ situation is possible and often also highly appreciated in business life. In order to find out how to reach a ‘win-win’ situation, feel free to join a negotiation club and start negotiating.
Soft skills like negotiation skills are extremely appreciated in business life. However, at the universities, they sometimes come to short so that the private and volunteer sectors need to provide the platform for training such skills. Having participated in a negotiation club once, you will quickly realize that it is possible to become a better negotiator while having a fun experience.