The enchanted forest of negotiation offers more than a few twists and turns.
Here are three tips from the hit TV show “Once Upon a Time” for planners who are navigating their way through the shadows.
Don’t Lack Confidence Like Cinderella
Cinderella’s classic tale tells the story of a widower’s daughter who is forced into servitude by her evil stepmother and stepsisters. Not until Cinderella’s Fairy Godmother transforms her into a princess does Cinderella gain the confidence she needs to rise above her stepmother and stepsisters. As a meeting planner, you don’t want to be the Cinderella of negotiations, even if you’re first starting out. While those first negotiations can be tough, a sense of confidence can go a long way. Before going into a negotiation meeting, make sure to practice expressing your ideas and needs, which will give you enough confidence to hold a firm stance and come to a positive compromise. In time, practice will only make it easier.
Avoid Devilish Deals by Asking for Enough
Rumplestiltskin is known for making devilish deals with desperate people, often saying “magic comes with a price.” That doesn’t have to be the case for meeting planners. You’d actually be surprised how much you can gain from a negotiation if you simply ask for it—even if it’s something that doesn’t seem to be on the table. In fact, it’s always better to ask for more and only get half of what you requested than to get all of what you requested and wish you’d asked for more.
Don’t Bite the Apple & Lose Your Cool
The story of Snow White tells of the princess eating an apple that puts her to sleep until she is awakened by the kiss of a prince. While the poisoned apple represents the queen’s intention to kill Snow White, an apple also often symbolizes temptation in folkloric tales. Meeting planners can take this as a warning not to be tempted to lose your cool. Getting angry or upset is possibly the easiest way to lose a negotiation; most people don’t want to do business with someone who has no control over their emotions. Instead, stay calm, and be direct and communicative about your needs and negotiation points.