The Negotiator Magazine

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2. Outcomes

Outcomes vary with each type of negotiation—and preparation is the key. The question of the desired outcomes is ultimately as serious as your choice of negotiating style.

Without realising that the different outcomes exist, it's difficult to know:

  1. where to start a negotiation, and
  2. if you've achieved the best outcome.

You also need to know when to turn on your heel and walk out of the discussions. Sometimes the outcome is simply not going to be worth the effort involved to close the deal. It's helpful to have a model against which to measure the desired outcome.

Negotiators who have a number of predetermined possibilities as outcomes have a better chance of getting what they want than negotiators who aim only for the right result.

Aim high, yes—but spend time in preparing more than one desired outcome.


This is the best result - both parties are satisfied by the transaction. You may see this result from either the quick, compromise or the deliberate approach. Here we have the classic satisfaction of mutual benefits: both sides feel they'd like to do business again. This is the outcome for which you should strive in every situation.

Although it can and does happen that both sides have that success feeling after a quick negotiation, you would usually [md that this kind of outcome is the result of the

deliberate approach, where both sides are working together in a creative manner to achieve a realistic result.

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March 2005