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Saying thank-you matters. It really matters. Not only does it show that you' re grateful, but it helps us enjoy our experiences, reduce anxiety, and it makes relationships stronger. In negotiation, saying thank-you can be really powerful. Some negotiation experts suggest that expressing gratitude in a negotiation invites exploitation. I do not agree.
You should be using 'thank-you' strategically. There are 3 places in a negotiation where you MUST thank the other party.
Thank the other party for meeting with you. Both parties have invested time into meeting. And, its likely that both parties have invested significant time in preparing for the negotiation. Recognize that. You MUST thank the other party for meeting with you. And be sincere about it. Take time at the beginning of the negotiation to thank the other party for their time. Many old school negotiators will tell you that the person you're negotiating with is "just a supplier" or "just a buyer", but that's nonsense. When you negotiate with someone, something strange and amazing happens in the exchange between both parties. Negotiation is interpersonal and intimate. And when people negotiate with each other, the relationships that are formed between two people are very different then any other kind of relationship. You are dealing with are people,....not machines,....not "just a supplier",....not "just a buyer". Recognize that.
Ever heard of the term, "thank and bank". It is critical that you thank the other party after they make a concession and that you bank it. But how you say thank-you is almost more important than the thank-you itself.
What do I mean by this?
Let's say, for example, that a buyer of your product has made a concession and has actually offered a higher price than they originally came in at in the beginning of the negotiation. Now, if you've been reading my material for a while, you know how I feel aboutstrategic cringing already. Once you've cringed you MUST pause (for at least 3 FULL seconds). After the pause you should say the following:
"Thank-you so much for your offer, I appreciate it, I'll definitely accept it...AND I believe that the value that our product provides your organization, because of [insert benefit here], requires a larger investment. I need you to increase your price, please."
Do you see what happened here? Let's break this down:
Following this formula will deliver better results in negotiations for you. Language is powerful and how you use that language can literally make or break deals.
When the negotiation is over, thank the other party. The other party needs to feel like they've won. CONGRATULATE the other party!!!! Make them feel like they've won. Thank them for their time. Thank them for their effort. Sincerely say thank you. If the other leaves the negotiation without feeling good about the deal your next negotiation with them will be more difficult. Showing gratitude also motivates those we thank to keep on giving (think of post sale service).
Saying thank-you matters. It doesn't invite exploitation. Quite the opposite, it presents opportunity.
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