We can’t discuss writing and publishing without exploring negotiating techniques. Believe it or not there is a science and art to negotiating. For instance if you think that pretending to walk out until your demands are met means you are the winner, you would be wrong. Playing hardball is more of a dirty trick and should not be used. That behavior can ruin a relationship and destroy negotiations. It can lead to positional bargaining which just ends in bruised egos.
Positional bargaining neglects the real issues and desires at hand. If you become stuck on positions you may neglect your interests. Your interests are the underlying issues making your position.
For example you want out of your rental home contract early but your landlord does not want the place to be vacant early. Your position is to move out, the landlord’s is to have the income. You interests are moving out, finding a better or cheaper place to live, which may take time. The landlord wants a steady income and does not want a vacant property sitting while he tries to market and lease it.
One way to address the interests of both parties is for you, the tenant, to rent for a specified time while you find a new place and the landlord can begin marketing and showing the home while you are there. For the inconvenience you make negotiate a prorated rate for the time.
Or course if you ever find yourself negotiating a publishing deal it won’t be that easy. Don’t fret dearies. I’m hear to help and guide you, and by guide you I mean link you to some awesome videos and podcasts from learned professionals like Margaret Neale who can help you “Get What You Want.” Mrs. Neale brings up some very valid points about women and negotiations. There is a double standard for men and women when it comes to negotiations. Women are seen as being unkind and pushy whereas a man is seen as ambitious. Our society also conditions women to be uncomfortable with confrontation or asking for what they deserve. That of course can lead into unequal pay for men and women but that’s another hurdle for another time. Neale says there is no one formula for a great negotiation but there are certain tactics that can help as well as research and preparedness.
William Ury did a Ted Talk a few years ago titled “The Walk from No to Yes” that summarizes some of the information in his book, “Getting To Yes.” He also speaks about the rut that positional arguing can lead to. While we usually see arguments in two sides there is usually a forgotten third side or outlook. It’s the third side that reminds the other two what is really at stake. This third view uses objective criteria to weigh the possibilities for each party.
If you have the time and attention span there is a video from Stanford Graduate School of Business featuring Joel Peterson on “Conducting Effective Negotiations” that you should check out. There is some repeated information from Ury’s talk but more in depth. Where Ury uses world politics for examples Peterson uses everyday examples, and a few political. He also touches on the how arbitrators can play a key role in negotiations.
If you only watch one lecture I highly recommend Margaret Neale’s talk. She addresses so of the specific difficulties that face women negotiating in professional and everyday settings.