Making business deals is not an easy task; the knowledge of the business processes and procedures, as well as the basic theoretical background concerning the issues in question is not enough.
We will write a custom Essay on The Role of Communication and Personality in Negotiation: Walking the Tightrope specifically for you
301 certified writers online
Quite often, a negotiation situation depends not on the profound knowledge of the business issue, but on the types of personality which both sides а the deal have, as well as the communicational strategies and approaches which both sides resort to.
In my own recent experiment with a business deal, I created a simulation of a situation in which I was making a bank loan to start a business venture.
It was considered that with the help of communication skills and the specific features of my personality, I would win over the insurance agent and he will entrust me with a bank loan which I was looking forward to.
Indeed, in the course of negotiation with the insurance agent, it turned out that the role of communication and personality in negotiation was crucial and could be used either for creating a perfect image of a loan person, or, on the contrary, to destroy the trustworthy image with a single careless phrase.
To start with, I visited the local bank with a project of my supposed company and a plan on how the given company is going to work, as well as when and what amount of revenues it will supposedly produce. At this point, the right communication technique meant a lot, since it was the project which the manager was focused on.
It was important that I tried to keep my speech to the minimum, so that my vis-à-vis would not lose the track of the conversation.
According to Bercovitch and Jackson, “In negotiation process, the role of personality traits such as charisma, cognitive complexity, or persuasiveness is important, but the idea that ‘great negotiations are born not made’ is incorrect” (Bercovitch & Jackson, 2009, 26).
I have to admit that at the given stage, the bank manager displayed rather impressive communicational skills. With the help of the emphasis on the non-verbal elements of communication, such as demonstration of openness and readiness to talk, the manager succeeded in creating a relaxing atmosphere.
Mr. Johnson, the manager, avoided folding his hands and leaned towards me in order to make the situation less strained. The given manner of conduct was rather relaxing and quite soothing; however, it is worth mentioning that the given manner also signified that a surprise attack was approaching.
In addition, Mr. Johnson tended to hold rather still, which meant that he was getting prepared to offer his counterarguments. As Uribe (2003) explained, “According to certain research, people who are masking true thoughts tend to gesture less and move their legs and arms less than people who say the truth” (Uribe, 2010, 21).
Therefore, the communication manner which Mr. Johnson chose helped indicate that he did not trust my project.
Speaking of the communication strategy which I used to persuade the manager that I could be trusted was using wide open gestures. According to Uribe, “In the context of day to day interaction and particularly negotiation, effective use of hand gestures to accompany our words, is one of the most important skills to learn” (Uribe, 2010, 22).
Thus, I was able to demonstrate that I was completely certain about the project success and that I was intending to build a strong partnership with the bank. Using the words and expressions which communicated certainty and commitment, and offering Mr. Johnson accurate calculations, I was able to persuade him in the success of my project.
Get your first paper with 15% OFF
Being aware that not only the conversational skills and the communicational approaches, but also the personal traits play great role in the outcomes of the negotiation process, I approached the situation with due care and considered my personal qualities before the meeting.
It was important to bear in mind that I was rather impulsive person, which could have impacted the entire conversation the wrong way.
Indeed, at one point, it was extremely hard to control emotions and not to lose the temper explaining why exactly the bank should give me the loan and why my plan was not going to backfire.
Since or characters did not quite match, with his calm, laid-back and calculating attitude, and my short temper and the lack of patience, there was obviously a conflict brewing.
Mr. Johnson must have been testing me to check if I was worth his while, but I failed to notice that and, when he started asking for more details on the project, I started feeling not quite certain.
It was essential that no one else intruded into the negotiation process; however, even as it was, with my strongly choleric personality type, and the manager obviously being a competitive type, there was a great chance of me losing temper and the manager ending the negotiation without letting me implement my project.
Therefore, it was necessary to consider the piece of advice which Guasco and Robinson gave in their work: “You don’t need to change who you are in order to be an effective negotiator. You just have to learn who that person is and manage yourself accordingly” (Guasco & Robinson, 2007, 17).
Therefore, it was most reasonable to let my vis-à-vis think that he controls the conversation and meanwhile think through the next step carefully, since when acting without thinking, I could make a lot of mistakes.
As one might have guessed, our conversation reminded much of a duel; the manager was obviously using his approaches to make my offer sound less credible than it was to begin with; meanwhile, I did my best to turn the full force of my overwhelming personality to the manager, making him realize that the project was bound to make a huge revenue.
Analyzing the experience which I had when asking the bank for the loan, I have to admit that there were a lot of communicational mistakes, as well as slips in the way I used my personality traits.
Although the chosen strategy of communication was correct, the tactics which I used to persuade the bank manager was far from being flawless. It is necessary to mention, however, that the manager also slipped in his communicational approach several times.
Nevertheless, the given experience is truly priceless for me and my future business deals, since it has shown not only the mechanisms of negotiation and the ways in which one can convey the required message, avoiding the possible pitfalls, but also the mistakes which one can make and the ways to avoid or correct these mistakes.
Bercovitch, J. & Jackson, R. (2009). Conflict resolution in the twenty-first century: Principles, methods, and approaches. Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan.
Guasco, M. & Robinson, P. (2007). Principles of negotiation: Strategies, tactics, techniques to reach agreement. Toronto, CA: Entrepreneur Press.
Uribe, T. D. (2003). The nonverbal skills you need for successful negotiation. Web.