The Art of Negotiation

At a recent seminar I attended on the art of negotiation, Steve Piacente and Carol Buckland with The Communication Center gave many tips on how to be an effective communicator.

They started with defining the five core concepts of communication.

  • Be Clear
  • Be Concise
  • Be Compelling
  • Be Candid
  • Be Comfortable

In addition, when giving a presentation, know your audience, frame it so they hear you.  Storytelling is an effective way of communicating your message.

Persuasive communication is based on reason, emotions and beliefs/values.

As stated above, frame your message so your intended audience is interested in what you have to say.

The word “because” is powerful, it gives the reasons why they should hear your message.

In other words, remember the WIIFM theory.  "What’s in it for me."

They then referenced Dr. Robert Cialdini’s six principals of influence:

  • Reciprocity
  • Commitment and Consistency
  • Social proof/consensus
  • Liking
  • Authority
  • Scarcity

They also referenced a study by UCLA professor Dr. Albert Mehrabian that states the percentages word choice, voice tone and body language have when you are communicating in an in-person conversation.  These numbers are probably not what you expected.

  • Word Choice - 7%
  • Voice Tone - 38%
  • Body Language - 55%

To sum it up, be intentional when selecting your words, use voice and the use of pauses effectively and don’t forget the most important, body language (posture, eye contact, smile).

They then went into the five different negotiating styles.

  • Competitive - I win, you lose.
  • Accommodating - I lose, you win.
  • Compromising - we both win and lose some.
  • Avoiding - I lose, you lose.
  • Collaborating - I win, you win.

They gave two examples of presentation formulas and I was reminded of one I’ve used over the years.

I learned the UPPOPR method over 30 years ago from a manager who was Xerox’d trained.  For a copy of that template go HERE or for a blog post on the subject go HERE.

They spent a little time on story formulas, and go HERE for a past blog post on that subject.

They finished talking about language of leadership and separated that discussion into two areas - weak and power speak.

Weak speak - saying “I think” vs “I know” or “I feel” vs “I am convinced.”

Power speak - use straightforward language, without jargon, and keep your communications short and to the point.

Good luck in your next conversation!

Succession and Transition Plans

I recently read The Association CEO Succession Toolkit by Gary A. LaBranche, FASAE, CAE and want to focus on the transition and continuity plan template found in Chapter 13 of the book.

I have written before, in a blog post found HERE, about succession planning and the importance of getting your board involved in creating the necessary documents to follow should a transition happen.

While some chambers may use a search firm to help secure the next CEO most due the search internally and this book is a great guide to follow as you go through that process.

Some key discussion items addressed when facing a transition include:

  • Review your strategic value proposition;
  • Aligning a new CEO with the board; and
  • Ensuring that both the board and CEO are in sync with the new value prop or direction of the chamber.

As stated in the book, there can be many reasons for a transition:

  • Leave of absence
  • Death of the executive
  • Termination
  • Retirement

Chapter 13 does a great job of outlining the roles and responsibilities of the board and staff and has a template to use depending on what situation you are dealing with above.

It is a step-by-step guide on who is responsible for the different tasks needed to communicate a transition, not only to your membership but also your staff and community.

To purchase the book go HERE.