With the abundance of various trainings and courses on the web, the main difficulty is to pick the ones that will deliver what they promise and will not rip you out. Hence, while looking at the offers, it is important to know what questions to ask and what outcomes to expect from the organizers. It is especially important if you buy the courses that will deliver practical skills to your employees, and these skills are supposed to impact positively the performance of your company in the future. Negotiation training belongs to such crucial training, so be very careful while selecting the training provider and program.
A really good negotiation training will describe the expected takeaways for the participants, list the key modules of the class, and offer the post-training follow-up support if necessary. This information will be available before training, so you will know for sure you are not buying a pig in a poke. So what should be included into a worthy training, to begin with?
– Explanation of the final takeaways provided at the opening of the session. It should align with expectations of participants. Thus, participants will get into working mood and get focused right from the start. Good trainers can even adjust the program on the go if they see that the participants have something specific in mind.
– Theoretical and practical modules. Theory, or explanation of real life cases, is necessary to provide a conceptual framework of negotiation activities. Practice is putting these concepts into action. For example, theory requires that a negotiator was an active listener, and practice shows how this skill plays out in real life (no, active listening is not sitting and staring blankly into the wall while someone is talking).
– Special focus on traps the other party can set for inexperienced negotiators and how to avoid them.
– Communication and Q&A session with a professional and successful negotiator who can provide valuable insights.
For a training to be really valuable and worth the investment, it should guide its participants through every stage of negotiations and teach them to prepare for every stage, even before the negotiations begin. It should also include the practice section where the theory is translated into an actual negotiations situation.
– Pre-negotiations stage: knowing one’s alternatives. It is important to enter the negotiations knowing where you may eventually land up. The training should list what actual outcomes of negotiations there are (there are more to them than just lose or win options), how to foresee them, and how to know that it is better to exit the negotiations altogether.
– Preparation for negotiations: the conceptual 8-step model, its discussion, and the comparison of the model applied by trainees to this model. There may be 5 or 7 steps on the list, but the general concept is still the same.
– Developing a strategy before the battle: yes, you can sit down at the table already knowing what and how you will argue, even before the other party speaks up. Actually, that’s how experienced negotiators act. Presentation of BATNA, ZOPA and other popular strategies.
– Questioning and listening skills. Documenting what is being said. How you interact and how you keep records of it can impact the fate of the deal severely.
– Exploring the challenges: traps, dirty tactics, unethical behavior of the other party, deadlocks, moving past hard objections, and so on.
– Profiling of trainees: it means that every trainee discovers their preferred negotiation tactics and learns to play this card to their advantage.
– Putting it into practice: obligatory part. Role play, negotiating with an experienced talker, getting feedback and making a unique plan of improving one’s negotiation strategy.
– Q&A session with an experienced negotiator.
This is how a really worthy training should work. Then the takeaways will be valuable and the acquired skills will be easy to put in practice. And that’s exactly what you aim for when booking a place at the training. So select wisely!