Negotiations have been carried out for as long as humans have existed. It could be argued that beating a fellow caveman with a club was simply negotiating by other means. Negotiations have become more nuanced, if not always more civil, over time and have produced treaties and trade agreements and have resolved myriad disputes.
In this new world where direct lines of authority have transformed into networks of collaboration, negotiation has become the primary form of decision-making and a key to management and leadership.
New World; New Rules
In today’s business world we can effectively assemble a team of world-class talent around any set of tasks we are confronting and get things done quickly, efficiently, and cost effectively. We can use tools like Freelancer and Upwork either to provide our skill sets for hire or locate and contract skills and expertise we need. We don’t need to live near each other or be in the same office in order to productively work together. We can email, Skype, GoToMeeting, and other technologies to bring people together to work effectively without concerns for geography. Open up a Skype channel and the person can be next to you all day collaborating in real time.
We don’t need to be co-located in the same office any longer. And the positions no longer need to be permanent. We can assemble the mosaic of talent specific to a particular project or phase of a project. Teams ebb and flow and breathe as the enterprise expands, contracts, and evolves.
We can contract with people best suited to a job and create and organize teams to fulfill our vision and goals. This turbo charged approach to human resources is a boon to productivity. But without the clear lines of authority inherent in a static organization, challenges arise.
To accomplish our work, and meet our deliverables, in this new paradigm we rely on individuals and organizations over whom we exercise no direct control. Purposeful management in these situations takes negotiation skill.
Use the following five step process, outlined by the acronym PIANO to make it easy to remember, to resolve conflicts, get deals done, and create better outcomes in negotiations.
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