In my opinion, the only way to negotiate and win, is if both sides win.
Basic negotiation starts with positional negotiation. For example, lets say we have one orange and two people who equally want the orange. In positional negotiation, the two parties are fixed to a position, and argue that point regardless of their interests. Each party want’s the orange, thats their position. Without looking into their interest’s, or why they want the orange, the mediator would decide to half the orange between the two parties. But what if half an orange would not satisfy the parties. We would have a standoff, and relationships would falter.
A better alternative is principled negotiation. This encourages the parties to use creative problem solving, by looking deeper into each position. Behind each position, lies the parties interests. In the example with the orange, we will look into why each party wanted the orange… we find that one party wanted to make orange juice, and the other party wanted the peel for orange zest. Now that we know each parties interests in the orange, we can have a better outcome and build a good relationship between the parties.
In property management we are negotiating every day. We negotiate move in dates, payment dates, letting fees, management fees, meeting times and even our weekends. Its an awesome platform to practice your negotiation skills. Always look behind the parties position, and find out what the interests are, thats where your solution lies. Ask lots of questions, upon questions, upon questions… until you have all the info you need. As a property manager, you are usually on one side of the negotiation. When dealing with tenants, be very firm and fair. You usually have the power and can dictate the outcome, don’t give up your power or be weak. Owners can do that themselves, they pay you to be a firm property manager. With owners, you will usually be on the weaker end due to client relationships. But be firm when it comes to your time after work and on the weekends. Sometimes sacrificing an hour or two on the weekend, will help foster those relationships. So it’s still win win.
A great book on Negotiating is “Getting to Yes” by William Ury. I also follow Ramit Sethi who wrote I will teach you to be rich. Check out his website here. http://www.iwillteachyoutoberich.com