Adapting Negotiation Skills to Our ‘New Digital Normal’

It’s almost the end of 2020. What a year, right? It’s a fact that everyone has had to evolve in response to Covid19, so it’ll come as no surprise that Sales Professionals are now required to adapt their negotiation skills to our ever-changing environment.

As a Sales Professional, you already know that the best negotiating practices are well studied and documented. So in this episode of Selling in Asia, join Tom Abbott as he explores how to utilize and re-purpose established techniques and psychology to effectively negotiate in our new digital normal

Also read:

The Impact of Covid19

While some countries are starting to roll out vaccines, it’s fair to say that the virus isn’t going to go away overnight, and it’s likely things won’t return to exactly what it was like pre-covid. 

Fortunately for us, we live in an age where we’ve spent decades already using technology as an integral communication method between teams, customers, prospects, and of course, friends and family. So, the question is, how do we adapt our skills as Sales Professionals to effectively negotiate online?

The Challenges We Face

As the physical distance between us and our prospects expands – it’s imperative to close the gap. We need to change the way we negotiate in the digital era. Our economies are unstable, and some of us are living on a day-to-day basis. Our potential customers’ risk-tolerance hovers above none, and they now require immediate aggressive priority setting to feel comfortable. So how do we combat these issues? Check out our tips to effectively adapt your negotiation skills below!

1. Non-Verbal Communication

Sales Professionals are used to walking into a meeting and delivering a perfect handshake to begin a connection with their prospect. Not anymore, so how do we build trust and rapport?

Be Fully Present. You need to engage actively, so don’t be tempted to rely on running through your pitch via slide-show – this closely links to my first point about having a video-on policy. So don’t cover your face with your slides!

A ‘video-on policy’ is imperative. You want to try to replicate an in-person negotiation to the best of your ability, right? So it makes no sense to take another aspect away from your prospects. Always having your video or camera activated is essential to making that connection of trust. You want to be able to read them, and they certainly want to be able to read you.

Gently mirror body language and energy. People like them are like them – so try to be relatable, even on an unconscious level.

Read our in-depth guide on Effective Body Language In Negotiations

2. Ethics & Reputation

How do you persuade someone you’ve never met to trust you? Lucky for us, that’s now our daily predicament. If you think about it, your reputation or even your representation is determined by an initial first handshake – the first real connection you make with a prospect. 

You refine all of the techniques we discussed in Challenge #1 to absolute perfection. Leave no room for error because every interaction is now under a microscope – you’ve got to get that connection right the first time.

3. Mis-Communication

When communicating through the medium of text, you immediately lose your tone, which often helps you provide context. 

It’s so easy to sound too aggressive, dismissive, or uninterested when you’re just trying to appear professional. Even things like sarcasm can be misrepresented entirely merely because they can’t see you grinning! 

Negotiation Skills Training

So let’s be honest, competition is more fierce now than ever – which leaves you with the question: “How do you get the upper-hand?”

Profit, relationships and deals are won or lost during the negotiation process. When successful negotiators arrive armed with the tools and skills needed to negotiate effectively, desired outcomes are optimised, and loss of profit is avoided. The thing is, when it comes to negotiations, profits and closed deals aren’t the only desired outcome. That’s where our Negotiation Skills Training comes in. 

Preservation of the relationship is also crucial to ensure long term business opportunities and negative feelings aren’t harboured.

Sales professionals, procurement departments, and business leaders must learn how to navigate effective negotiations that positively impact both parties and inspire future business.

Scroll to Top