Unveiling the Blueprint for Negotiation Success

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Unveiling the Blueprint for Negotiation Success

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Salespeople will spend months setting up a sales meeting, putting in the hours of research, calling, and emailing – only to see it all fall apart when they’re in a sales conversation.

We front-load our efforts into generating sales conversations but spend almost no time preparing to negotiate our deals.

Instead of seeing all your efforts fall apart when negotiations begin, take the time to develop a system that ensures you’re showing up just as prepared for negotiating a great deal as you do to set up great sales meetings.

To learn how the best are systemizing their negotiation preparation and execution, we sat down with Mark Raffan, CEO of Negotiations Ninja. He walked us through the same process he uses to train his clients in selling more – and serving more.

Because we’re trimming hope from our sales strategy, we’ll use the acronym TRIM to guide us through creating a system with a trigger, ensuring it’s repeatable, building in ways to improve it and of course, ensuring it’s measurable and getting us results.

T-Trigger: Don’t wait until you’re in a negotiation to start planning for one. Mark recommends triggering this system at the juncture in a sales conversation where genuine interest is expressed, and value enters the picture. You should have the repeatable part of this process prepped and ready to go once you’re in this stage so that you don’t have to scramble to remember everything you need to achieve.

R-Repeatable: To make this system repeatable, Raffan said to ensure you have your aspirational goals defined and in front of you. What makes a great sale and a great customer? Without knowing that, you won’t know how qualify your prospect or what you’re willing to give up to bring them on as a partner.

Second, be clear on what you can negotiate to reach those goals, for both you and your prospect. Discovering you’ve stepped outside your acceptable concessions or price in a conversation is not what you want to look back on, so be clear on where your negotiation limits are.

Third, work with your prospect to define what does success look like for them? What aspirational goals does this prospect have that your product or service can help them achieve? Those items help you define how valuable your product or service could be to this prospect, which will help you justify your terms and ensure you’re not negotiating yourself into a poor position.

Finally, now that you know your goals, the things you can negotiate and your prospect’s goals, discover what things the prospect is willing to take on or concede to reach their aspirational goals.

I-Improvable: To make this system improvable and ensure it keeps up with constant change, evolving market conditions, shifting prospect needs, and updates in product or service offerings, Mark says to re-assess your aspirational goals on a regular basis and ensure they’re still aligned with the reality you’re operating in. If the market shifts, so should your goals. There’s always room to optimize how you’re establishing success, learning about your prospect’s version of success, and aligning the two.

M-Measurable: To measure the effectiveness of this system, Mark says to meticulously track how close you are in your deals to your acceptable outcomes —each element negotiated into the deal to achieve aspirational goals. If you’re establishing a dozen ideal outcomes from your deals, from pricing to terms to referrals, measure how many of those you’re able to achieve and adjust your sales and negotiations accordingly.

By preparing for your negotiations as much as your do your prospecting, you’ll ensure you’re getting the opportunity to sell more, and serve more.

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