Essential skills to help master the art of negotiation

For some, grasping effective negotiation skills comes naturally, while for others such skills are not necessarily inherent and can take some time to develop, polish and perfect.

Mastering the art of negotiating is sometimes learned through trial and error, while others choose instead to be taught and participate in immersive negotiation training workshops. Since human nature strongly influences the outcome of a negotiation agreement, it is important to get inside the minds of those with whom you are negotiating so that you have complete clarity on their position. By doing so you ensure that the time invested to come to an agreement is made worthwhile to both sides. Taking the time to learn and acquire these skills before starting the negotiation can be the difference between a success and overwhelming frustration.



An experienced negotiator will be well-prepared before entering a negotiation, identifying and researching the needs of the other party, as well as their own. It is important to have a clear picture in mind of your own goals and visions beforehand so that you’re prepared and confident for questions and possible changes in terms. Knowing how much capacity you have is as important as knowing how far the other party is willing to bend and make changes within the deal. Preparing an in-depth checklist will be helpful; ensuring you cover all points in a logical order, in addition researching notes from past negotiations will provide additional and often valuable insights.

Effective Communication

Whether the method of communication is verbal or written, a party that does not get their voice across in a clear and focused manner risks making themselves look vulnerable during the negotiation. Staying calm, being clear, and concise in your communication is the best way to overcome uncertainty and doubt and an important foundation to any successful negotiation..


Quick Decision Making and Problem Solving

Although an important part of the negotiation process is to be detail-oriented and to think all decisions through thoroughly, there are times when it is imperative to make a quick choice and to solve a problem immediately. The ability to make such decisions is important during negotiations, particularly when it is time to either act upon an agreement or to counteroffer. With advanced knowledge of the predicted result coupled with extensive research, this can be easily achieved.

People Skills

Although negotiations can often be hard fought it is important to remember that a professional working relationship will need to be maintained after the event. Respect and empathy for the opposing party are just two of the people skills you will need to perfect to become a truly great negotiator.


A negotiation involves a promise and trust to execute on a mutual agreement. A trusting environment and earning a respectable reputation are both important foundations to becoming an expert negotiator. Remember a positive reputation within the business industry can and will bring in further business.

 Without the correct guidance and knowledge any form of negotiation can be a daunting experience however help is at hand.Through immersive and inspiring workshops even the more experienced negotiator can benefit from perfecting and streamlining their skills. The Gap Partnershipis the leading provider of such services specializing both comprehensive training and consultancy.

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