ability to negotiate contracts. Given that information, and knowing he didn’t have to have immediate price concessions, I proposed a tiered pricing
model based on volume. The first price reduction
actually occurred at a volume level that the client
had never attained previously, but he got his win
and I got to preserve the firm’s profit margin.
Ask for, or propose, alternative solutions. Negotiations don’t have to, and
shouldn’t, always be about price. Your
general staffing agreement should contain several
other parameters that give you some negotiating
room. Sometimes letting the prospect know that
you aren’t able to move on price, but are willing to
concede in other areas gives you an opportunity to
shift the focus away from just money.
Here are a few examples of negotiating points
other than price:
This can be a valuable service that prospects
may be willing to pay for, or perceive as valuable
Use silence to your advantage. There is
an old adage that says: He who speaks first
loses. For most people silence is uncomfortable. For some, it’s nothing short of unbearable. Learn to be comfortable with silence and to
use it as a negotiating tactic. This doesn’t mean to
stare blankly back at a prospect like you’re trying
to win a staring contest. Rather, it can be as simple
as pausing, looking away as if in deep thought, or
even writing down notes without speaking for an
extended period of time.
Worst case is nothing happens, but many times
your prospects will want to fill that silence and will
keep talking, even negotiating against themselves.
Never be the sole decision-maker. Ever
walk into a client meeting, only to be outnumbered seven to one? We all have, and
it’s rarely by accident. This is a common negotiating technique designed to put you at a disadvantage, and ultimately get you to agree to something
you may not normally agree to. Your best defense is
to delay the decision, get out of there, and regroup
when the numbers are a little more even.
How do you do that? By leaving the final decision up to someone else. That might be your
manager, corporate, or even your accounting
department. “I’ll need to run those numbers by
my accountant before committing to anything.”
Sometimes the best offense is a good defense.
Create a sense of urgency. In staffing,
we are faced with urgency all the time:
Creating a sense of urgency for the prospect not
only improves your chance of landing the business,
but also can reduce the emphasis placed on pricing.
Examples of creating urgency include presenting
a candidate that is in high demand, or offering
pricing that will change with the new year. ➤
ASAPro offers an
archived course by
Tom Erb on the topic
of sales strategies.
Go to americanstaff-
and do a keyword
search by speaker