37.5.1 NATURE and PURPOSE OF NEGOTIATIONS
Daily life, public or private, revolves around negotiating with others. The Qur’an has recorded
many instances of discussion in the form of negotiations always emphasizing the need for discussion in a good way. Negotiation
is necessary to protect your interests, and get as much advantage as possible without entering into costly and bruising confrontations.
Most conflicts can be resolved through negotiation. Good negotiation turns confrontation into cooperation. Physicians must
be able to negotiate with their patients and relative to agree on a treatment plan otherwise a lot of conflicts and misunderstandings
will occur. Negotiation skills can be learned. Negotiations can be win-win in which each party leaves satisfied or win-lose
in which one party leaves with a feeling of winning and the other leaves with a feeling of having lost. A win-win outcome
is the best in a negotiation. It ensures that each party gets the maximum it can from the transaction, part as friends who
can work together again. Both objectives and relations must be considered. Future relationships may be lost by aggressive
pursuit of objectives.
37.5.2 STATEGY OF NEGOTIATION
Negotiating is strategy. Never enter a negotiation unless you have a well worked out strategy and a
clear objective. A negotiator must know the bottom-line from the beginning and must work out the worst-case scenario. A key
to good negotiation is to be able to understand the other party's negotiation strategy and to acknowledge its strong and valid
points. Understanding does not imply acceptance but goes a long way toward a win-win outcome. It is better to use persuasion
ratherb than power. It is better to warn than to threaten. Provocations should be avoided. A win-lose formula in negotiations
can work only if future relationships do not matter. Win-lose situations often end up as lose-lose to the detriment of both
parties. It is advisable aim at a win-win outcome even if you can get away with a win-lose outcome. Negotiations should not
wander away from rationality. Every negotiation involves making concessions and compromises. Privacy, patience, and time are
needed for success of negotiations. Simultaneous negotiation over several issues at the same time increases the possibility
of a compromise. Brinkmanship and bluffs lead to disaster in most negotiating situations.
37.5.3 NEGOTIATION TACTICS
Aggressive tactics are pressure tactics and intimidation. Friendly
tactics are the kid-glove and the good-guy/bad-guy combination. Evasive tactics are hiding behind an invisible authority,
stone walling, and deception. Provocative tactics are attempts to erode confidence, provoking emotions, anger, and personal
attacks. Effective approaches consist of being aware of risks, an incremental approach, follow-up and implementation.
37.5.4 MANAGING A NEGOTIATION SESSION
The actual negotiation session should be planned as much as possible. Never leave anything to chance.
Background information must be collected. A negotiating strategy must be adopted. A negotiation session has the following
main stages: setting the agenda, opening the negotiations, demands and offers, narrowing differences between the parties,
final bargaining, persuading the other party to cross the last hurdle to agreement, and implementation of the negotiated deal.
Think about implementation of negotiated deal during the negotiation. Minimize risks in the deal.
37.5.5 DIFFICULT NEGOTIATIONS
The following are barriers to successful negotiations: a negative attitude to negotiations, poor communication
skills, lack of knowledge, lack of confidence in negotiations, fear of confrontation, being emotional and not being objective,
being reactive, treating the other party as adversaries who must lose, and aggressive behavior. Deadlocked negotiations are
natural because there are issues that are not negotiable. Deadlocks should be anticipated and contingency plans should be
made. If it is in your interests to continue the negotiations, devise ways and means of getting around a dead-lock. Stay calm
and keep negotiating. You have to change the rules of the game or reframe issues. Consider all alternatives and look for options.
Utilize maximum flexibility but never lose sight of the final goals and your permanent interests.