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Negotiation Alternatives to Create Leverage

Bringing out desired outcomes relies on a structured approach and negotiations can often fall on aspects that are caused by a lack of planning. Creating leverage is an important part of the negotiation strategy, which can be implemented by having alternatives. Also known as BATNA (best alternative to a negotiated agreement), this tactic ensures you have another option you can pursue if the negotiation falls through. It aims to avoid the reservation point walkway and focuses on flexibility to encourage a mutually beneficial outcome.

Why Walking Away Can Be a Win

If you focus on alternative options, the bottom line is not as final, so walking away from one deal to pursue a new deal can be a win. The circumstances surrounding the walkway can present as: 

  • Not the right time. If you leave the table on good terms there's room for negotiation in the future. Call it bad timing and leave your options open for possibilities later down the line.

  • Third-party opportunities. Perhaps your goals are not aligned or the company is not a great match, but there may be third parties where an alternative can be found.

  • Other options. A different vendor or deal may be available to both parties, which will make walking away more beneficial.

The desired outcomes for each party and implications of concluding a flawed deal must be considered. This helps you reframe the positive aspects of not getting the deal and ensure you're looking at it with the best interests of the business in mind. 

Better Opportunities

Negotiations don't have to be an all-or-nothing scenario. In some cases, you may find that another product or service might fit your company better, and that reframes the negotiations. In other cases, you might be able to negotiate a partial deal that keeps both sides happy and running. In either case, the initial negotiation may have technically failed, but by considering alternatives, you may end up with a better result. 

Determining Leverage

Creating positive leverage is what effective negotiators aim for. This type of leverage focuses on what the counterparty can gain and ensures that value is offered. There are various ways to achieve this by determining what the counterparty needs and wants. When you create multiple sources of positive leverage, you'll be able to conclude a negotiation successfully.

Coercive leverage on the other hand is a negative tactic that leaves the counterparty with no option but to agree to the deal even if they aren't getting their desired outcomes. This hardball approach is not always necessary if you simply reframe the negative aspects into positive ones. 

Contract Planning

Once you've ironed out the details, you can go ahead and present the contract to the counterparty. Plan it properly to ensure that all bases are covered and there are no loopholes. It's also important to present it professionally. A JPG to PDF converter can ensure it's in the correct format. 

If you need to network and create additional opportunities, join your local chamber of commerce for great tips and access to your business community.


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