Seriously, I believe you should be actively negotiating everything. Or at least thinking about how you can actively getting more out of your daily interactions.
“Why?” you may ask.
Because you already do, so you may as well get good at it. Think about it. Your life as one negotiation after another. From the time you wake up to the time you go to sleep, you are negotiating. Roger Fischer (co-author of “Getting to Yes”) starts his book by saying “Like it or not, you are a negotiator. …Everyone negotiates something very day.”
When you wake up, you’re negotiating with the dog in the morning to go outside to pee, you’re negotiating with your kids to get dressed quickly for school, you’re negotiating with your toddler to eat his breakfast before day care, you’re negotiating with your partner on pick up times and hopefully a night out this week with the boys. And then you go to work.
At work you’re hiring, firing, trying to get employees to work harder, trying to get project teams to work better together, defining scopes, setting deadlines, outlining deliverables, asking for help, trying to get people to stop trying to help, you request proposals, you make offers, negotiate proposals, request clarifications, you’re managing up, managing down, managing sideways.
Then you go home and the negotiating continues.
You talk about health care, braces, when to send mom and dad to a home, what car to buy, what house to buy, where to eat for dinner, what to eat for dinner, what medical advice to follow, debate with each other on politics, religion, abortion, life! Try get the kids to bed without negotiating,…I can’t do it. Now my kids know the drill and they’re actively extorting candy from me.
Then you go to bed,…and wake up,…and the cycle continues. So if you’re going to be doing it anyway, why not get better at it and actively participate and get better deals.