The most important tool in a successful negotiation may well be your negotiation style. Open with your strongest posture. This gives you room to maneuver and compromise. But, keep an open mind so you can identify suitable alternatives to achieving your objectives. The more details you have, the better your chances for a satisfactory resolution.
Know the Other Side's Posture
Make sure you're fully aware of what the other negotiator is trying to accomplish. You'll probably find that most proposed solutions are quite reasonable. Letting the other person have input into a solution will also make him or her feel more satisfied, and more willing to meet your terms where it really counts.
Check Your Impact
Review how you sound and how you look as you study your opponent's personality, style, and preferences. Make sure that your style does not interfere with what you say. For example, approaching negotiation from too fast a pace may cause the other party to believe you are vulnerable and anxious to concede.
What's the rush? If you wait for the other side to make the first offer, you may find yourself in a very advantageous position. The more accurately you understand the other person's requirements, the more closely you can tailor your proposals to provide what is acceptable.
Keep The Negotiation On Your Terms
Use concessions as bargaining chips, giving up one in exchange for another more valuable to your purposes. Let the other party concede first. When it is time for you to concede, do so on a minor issue so you don't appear eager to give up too much. Concessions can gain strategic advantages when you're negotiating, but you can lose influence quickly if you don't know when and how to make the right concession. And, don't be too eager to accept a concession. Unless the other party has agreed to your terms to a reasonable degree, take your time in accepting the offer. Your calm and thoughtful approach may just cause the other party to concede even more.