Dec. 11, 2019

39: A powerful way to push back... without appearing to push back


You know you need to push back during a negotiation but sometimes feel like you don't do it very effectively? Chris Voss has a very effective way in Never Split the DifferenceSupport the show (http://www.unstoppable.do)
Transcript
Speaker 1:

You know you need to push back during a negotiation, but sometimes you feel like you don't do it very effectively. Chris Voss is a very effective way and never split the difference.

Speaker 2:

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Speaker 3:

welcome to the bite size sales podcast where we believe that sales is the most important team and a B2B company, that the sales team deserves great sales skills training but usually doesn't get it and that taking bite-size steps each day to get better at your craft is the best way to improve results. I am your host, Andrew Monahan , and I'm using my experiences in B2B sales to bring you simple, actionable ideas every day to help you get better.

Speaker 2:

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Speaker 1:

welcome to episode 39 and this is the third of five this week about negotiation. We've all got end of month and for many of us and a quarter and a year coming up and a , this is a great way to sharpen the saw around negotiation. So I remember just a few years ago, I was working a deal with one of, probably the best known technology companies in Silicon Valley. And we had one issue where we didn't support one of the operating systems that they needed in our solution, but we would do in the future. Right? We knew it was coming, but it wasn't there quite yet. Um , and we weren't ready to commit to exactly when it was going to come out. Um, but despite that, they wanted to buy any way they wanted to get into negotiation and figure out the deal we could get done. Um, and you know, they were a big company and we were startup, but they were being reasonably reasonable. Right. They were being definitely formed , but there was nothing unreasonable up to this point about what they were asking for. They weren't trying to bully us. Right. Um, and then when I got on a call one day and there was the, the team, the evaluation team decision team, and then they brought in purchasing their, their lead negotiator guy came on and there was me and I think a couple from our side. Um, and what came out in this call was the, the, the decision team asked us, he said, look , what we need you to do as part of this deal is we need to commit in writing to release this version for this new awareness by a certain date, but we're not willing to buy it right now and we're not willing to commit to buy it in the future. So I remember sitting there thinking, Oh, that's kinda weird, right? You're, you're asking us to commit to doing something, but you're not even in return going to commit to buy it in the future. If we deliver, you just want us to do it as part of this deal. And I was kinda in a weird situation, right? Cause it up to them, they've been pretty reasonable. And to me, that was off the other end of the charts. And I was kind of fumbling a little bit about how to kind of respond to that. And luckily for me at the time , uh , their purchasing guy actually came in and said, look, that's ridiculous. Um, no company would ever in their right mind agree to those. Like, I don't need sure why you're suggesting that they should do that for you. Right? So they kind of , this guy came in and just kind of shut the whole thing down. And I remember afterwards thinking, well, what would have been the elegant way for me to push back? What would it have been the elegant way for me to say, actually, we can't do that without having it be a , a real sticking point or anything else. Um, and when I read Chris Voss, his book never split the difference there . One bit of it in there that really hit home. And I remembered that one situation thinking, gosh, I could have actually used this. And in that situation, maybe come out of it a pretty nicely. So let me read , uh , from, from , uh, never split the difference here for you. So if you, years ago I was consulting with a client who had a small firm that had PR for a large corporation. The folks at the big company were not paying their bills and as time went on, they owed my client more and more money. They kept her on the hook by promising lots of repeat business implying that she would get a pile of revenue if she just kept working and she felt trapped. My advice for her was simple. I told her to engage them in a conversation where she summarized the situation and then ask, how am I supposed to do that? She shook her head no way. The idea of having to ask this question just terrified her. If they tell me I have to, then I'm trapped. Was there a reaction? She also heard the question as you're screwing me out of money and it has to stop. That sounded like the first step to her getting fired as a consultant. I explained to her that this implication though real was in her mind or client would hear the words and not the implication. As long as she kept calm and avoided making it sound by her delivery deliberately like an accusation or a threat. As long as she stayed cool, they would hear it as a problem to be solved. She didn't quite believe me. We walked through the script several times, but she was still afraid. Then a few days later she called me totally giddy, giddy with happiness. The client had called with another request and she finally got on the cars to summarize the situation and ask how am I supposed to do that? And you know what the answer she got was, you're right, you can't, and I apologize or client explained that they were going through some internal problems, but she was given a new accounting contact and told she'll be paid within 48 hours. And she was now think about how my client's question wart without accusing them of anything. It pushed the big company to understand her problem and offer the solution she wanted. That in a nutshell is the whole point of open ended questions that are calibrated for a specific effect. And that's the difference between your screw me out of money and it has to stop and how am I supposed to do that? So that's read straight from the book. Never split the difference by Chris Voss. And I think the key here is the tone in which do it right. It can come across as accusatory, can come co come across as giving them an ultimatums and like that. But if you keep the emotion out of it and you don't be accusing them when you're talking and just simply ask them in a level voice, how am I supposed to do that? It might actually play out for you where they can recognize a situation that you're in. And going back to the situation I was in, if I'd summarize back to them, you know, you want us to develop this for you, you want us to commit to a certain date, but you're not willing to pay us or commit to pay us for it at any point in time. How am I supposed to do that? You know, I wonder what that would have got from them, right? It might have got them recognizing what they're asking for. So in your negotiations this month, get ready to use this. It could be so powerful, perfect for you when you do have to push back. Uh , so summarize what they're asking for. They simply asked them, how am I supposed to do that?

Speaker 2:

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Speaker 3:

If you liked this episode, please share it wide and far spread the word. I get energy from seeing people download and use this content. So please just take 20 seconds to share with anyone you think would like it to .

Speaker 2:

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Speaker 3:

episode is sponsored by unstoppable dot du . Most sales teams are not trained effectively the skills and mindset they deserve, and these are the most important people in the company. It's no wonder that only about 50% of reps make quarter every year. Unstoppable is a service that helps sellers and leaders get great at the skills and mindset they need without taking time out of the field. It exists because if the sales team has the right skills and mindset, they thrive, they are confident and the performance

Speaker 1:

much better. Find out more and even get a free sales book@bitesizesales.com

Speaker 3:

now , to wrap up as Jim Finn , VP security sales at Presidio may or may not have one said training without implementation is just entertainment and prepare entertainment when Monaghan does it. So make sure you take action on what you learn and keep getting better every day. This world does not need more sales BS, so don't create anymore . Be great at the fundamentals. Be honest, be real. Be yourself. Just do not BS . And finally, I'm setting off as the great Joe Sexton would by saying, gone to sell.

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