Law Practice Management and Technology

The Bottom Line Volume 38, No 1 April 2017

MCLE Self-Study Article The Power of Preparation in Negotiations and Mediation

By Mari Frank, Esq., CIPP

Effective negotiators use their authentic power. Genuine power is not about controlling, bullying, or strong-arming others. Instead successful negotiations depend upon your ability to influence the other stakeholders to want to collaborate with you to get a deal that will work because it satisfies everyone’s underlying interests. You can attain a top-notch settlement to gratify your clients and yourself when you are well prepared as to the facts and issues, and you are trustworthy, positive, creative, and tenacious.

Your true negotiation power induces others to want to cooperate with you so that all stakeholders will get enough of their interests met to get a sustainable agreement. When you’re in command of your persuasive skills, you can cultivate friendly relationships, and at the same time develop a reputation for being a formidable negotiator. As you use effective communication techniques, when misunderstandings arise (which they will), you can maintain trust to facilitate the resolution of misunderstandings and challenging issues.

To achieve successful settlements, consider using the six steps below to enhance your negotiation power. The acronym POWERS is an easy way to remember the key ingredients in achieving your highest potential in any negotiation or mediation process.

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