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How to Increase Your Chances of Acceptance

By Peter Frensdorf

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Many negotiators believe that their proposals are accepted or refused based on content alone. This idea was outdated from the moment that neuroscience showed that interaction between the parties outweighs the issue itself. This effect, named NeuroEconomics, means that basically the same proposal may be accepted OR refused for a whole range of reasons. A rude awakening! But also potentially an advantage for those who can recognize this and use it to their advantage.

The effect is true for eight major reasons:

1.  Transference. This impact on acceptance results from the previous experiences of the parties. Fair or not, everything you are and stand for automatically influences the decision of the other party. This happens because we all want to grow wiser by experience. In fact people transfer emotions where they don’t belong. For instance; how you look, speak, dress, and walk is being transferred to how another person with similar features treated them. In other words; you get the bill that belonged to someone else- in credit or debit.

2.  Linguistics. Word choice plays a major role because it enables you to understand more fully what others are really thinking. The same way your word choices may influence others on a subconscious level. It takes some training to accomplish either correctly.

TIP: the more words you recycle (re-use their words to suit your purpose) the greater your chance of acceptance.

3.  Nonverbal communication is much more than posture. For instance, research by John Bargh at Yale University and Ab Dijksterhuis at Amsterdam University has shown that Environmental Influencing is very reliable. A briefcase or a fruit basket on the negotiation table makes an impression on whatever takes place there. One indicates business; the other is a welcoming gesture.

4.  Preconceived notions. Our assumptions about the situation or the person facing us, works just like a pair of sunglasses. We view everything in that light. Every person has a train of thought and adding wagons of new information to that train often merely continues its course in the wrong direction.

TIP: when you are facing circumstances that don’t add-up, take a break and rethink it all over again. Don’t be scared to change course because it is a sign of intelligence, not weakness.

How to Increase Your Chances of Acceptance by Peter Frensdorf


Copyright ©Peter Frensdorf 2014. All rights reserved.
Copyright ©   2014  The Negotiator Magazine
The Negotiator Magazine  August 2014