By Greg Williams  |   Submitted On September 11, 2018

“Did you really want those bananas?” That was the question asked as one friend watched another negotiate the price of a lamp. “Yes, I wanted them”, was the reply. “I love bananas, especially when they’re free!”

Bananas can be a metaphor for anything you get as a bonus when negotiating.

Two friends were at a flee market. One saw a unique USB lamp. He asked the seller for the cost. The reply was $7. The friend offered $5. The seller said he paid more than that. So, the friend offered $6. The seller still said no. With that, the friend turned and began walking away. As he did, he spotted bananas. He turned and said, I’ll give you $7 for the lamp if you’ll give me seven bananas and the lamp. The seller said, okay. He gave the buyer the lamp, along with seven bananas, and that consummated the deal. That occurred even though the seller had the bananas listed at sixty cents each.


When you negotiate, do you note your real objective? In the situation above, the objective was not to get the lamp for less than $7, it was to maximize the purchasing power of the $7. The bananas added value to that purchasing power. That recognition helped the friend bring the deal to fruition.

Hidden Value:

When contemplating the objective of a negotiation, consider the hidden value that might provide added value to the outcome. That will afford you more flexibility in achieving your objective. It will also stave off possible impasses in the negotiation. Not only should you consider what you might seek as added value, you should consider the same for the other negotiator. Considering his perspective of added value will give you a possible bargaining chip to overcome a point of contention.

In part, you can entice the opposition to possess a red herring; a red herring would be something that you professed as having value. Feign extreme hardship at forgoing it, to give it added value. Offer it as a trade for what you’re seeking, or to help bridge the gulf between what the other negotiator seeks from the negotiation.

Know the Needs:

To employ the use of added value successfully, know what added value is. Per the way the other negotiator perceives it, obtain insights from conversations and her writings before the negotiation. Do that by acquiring foreknowledge from friends and associates of hers. For your own means, consider everything you might want from the negotiation and how obtaining it would add value to your outcome expectations. For either of you, that can be in the form of financial, prestige, or perceived as being fair. Whatever it is, know what it is and use it appropriately.

Before you set out to negotiate, consider the different ways you might enhance the negotiation. Consider the possibilities that might present themselves as an added value to the outcome. Some may be things that you don’t really want. Nevertheless, you can use them as chits to enhance the probability of getting more from every negotiation you’re in. By uncovering more hidden value opportunities when negotiating, you’ll enhance your negotiation position, power, and outcome… and everything will be right with the world.

Remember, you’re always negotiating!

Article Source:

Negotiation means getting the best of your opponent.



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