Last week we spent time defining “negotiation.” This discussion also taught us the key distinction between negotiation and manipulation and why if we do not recognize the difference between the two, we are going to avoid negotiating instead of leaning in and using this skill set to get results. Now let’s dive into understanding why executive negotiations are a critical skill to create executive success.

If you recall, negotiation actually means the interaction between two or more people where you reach a mutual agreement.  Let’s take it one step further, not only is it an agreement, but it’s an agreement where both parties feel comfortable with what is agreed upon. If we go even one step further, we could say that the majority of the time, both parties actually feel good about the end result.

Why do they feel good? Because both parties got something they needed or wanted in order to move their portion of the business forward.

Isn’t the point of a negotiation to move the business forward for the betterment of both parties? 

Let’s think through that for a second.

As an executive, you must work through people in order to move an idea, a process, or a program forward that is truly in the best interest of the company and the customer. The result you’re focused on generating is a result that serves everyone, not just you. (Go back to our discussion on manipulation vs. negotiation to remind you of this difference.)

Isn’t the concept of “working with people and through people to achieve a common goal” the epitome of being an executive?  

So then couldn’t we say that negotiation is the key skill of being a successful executive?

You are negotiating as an executive every single day.  You’re asking questions, you’re learning, you’re challenging, and you are moving the business forward through active discussions with other leaders.

If you cannot collaborate, influence, and take decisive action, you will not succeed in the executive role.  

What are influential conversations that involve collaboration and result in decisive action? 


Is it coming together for you?

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