The Psychology of Negotiation- Contract Negotiation Series 4

There is a lot of information about business tools and templates related to commercial and business negotiation and much has been written about how to choose the right negotiation strategy. Nevertheless, the core of negotiation and the psychological factors that drive the same cannot be found in the commercial negotiation strategy, nor the tools used. How the main players’ emotions change their behaviour in the middle of the process and how this affects the final result? At the end of the day getting the deal is highly dependent on player’s emotional intelligence and their self-esteem that is driven by their motivation and to the biggest extend their fear. 

It appears that not the actual process is important but the players' behaviours and their characters, which is the heart of the commercial negotiation. The negotiation analysis moves from the actual process towards analysing the main players' behaviours and their characters. Which is what forms the psychology of the negotiations for commercial contracts. The amalgamation of the characters and behaviours is playing the main role in the negotiations process. 

- Fulfilling personal objectives, achieving satisfaction between the characters 

- The motivation of the main players has been continuously adjusted between conflicts and agreements until a balance is achieved 

- Each negotiation has a built-in belief structure and character-driven by the player’s emotional intelligence. 

- There is constant interaction between the main players’ characters

Looking from the psychological point of view, the needs of a negotiator are not different from other humans, as well as there is no different characteristic or feature which negotiators have and others not. 

According to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, below are the main characteristics that drive the negotiator’s motivation. 

Security; In general, security is the most powerful encountered motivational factor, for the negotiator found him/her self in a known or expected environmental society and surrounded by the well-known situation. Unfortunately, the latter is not always the case. If the need for security is compromised, it gets domination over the rest of the factors. This inevitably changes the negotiator’s behaviour till the process last, unless the security need is sufficiently satisfied. 

The need to know and understand so to drive the negotiation process. Party’s knowledge doesn’t always help in certain situation. If such information is unfavourable to a particular interest, then the same piece of information is better to be withheld till the party get the required position more securely.

The need for the organisational professional potential to drive self-actualisation and fulfilment. The only negotiation would be counted that help’s business to prosper. Negotiator’s motivation would be derived from his/her purely professional objectives and goals, which are in line with the current economic factors serving as a good basis for decision making, which is in total alignment with the organisational objectives. 

The need for inner satisfaction to achieve self-esteem. Along with organisational goals, the negotiator will look to satisfy him/her self, as a basis to achievement-oriented in which the person will make particular commitments to the choice he/she makes. 

The need to satisfy others is a prerequisite to self-esteem. Satisfying others is the most powerful motivation for a negotiator, which affects their behaviour the most. A powerful feeling also is the fear of dissatisfaction of his/her manager and colleagues if the achieved results are not to the expected level. 

I addition, the negotiator is always trying to manage the interaction between factors like time spent for negotiation, terms that need to be agreed upon, a choice between aspects of goals and decision making, as well as trade-offs the agreement optimum terms and the certainty of the same. It is not easy to choose the best approach between the two positives. The negotiator needs to chose which of the two is less favourable, which is raising conflicts in the negotiator’s motivation. This is called the approach-avoidance negotiation process, the factor that highly affects the outcome of the commercial negotiation. 

Veselin Shivachev 

Vedera Consulting
+44 (0) 2381941164


About us

Business Procurement
Commercial Management
International Business Negotiations
Book Free Evaluation Advise
Vedera 2022, All rights reserved. Privacy Policy / Terms & Conditions of Use / Cookies Policy