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Be the closer

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Negotiation touches every part of our lives. Relationships in business and in our personal lives are negotiated. And the skills to do it effectively can often mean the difference between getting what you want or losing out. You don’t get what you deserve, you get what you negotiate!

In the first section of the book, How to be a Great Negotiator, written by property economist, investor and developer Neville Berkowitz, the characteristic traits of a great negotiator are explored in short, bite-sized nuggets of advice.

Over the next 132 days, we will bring you the traits needed to succeed at the art of negotiating.

(Courtesy of PersonalEmpowerment.co)

18 Closer

A negotiation is not concluded until it is closed by a Closer, with the necessary paperwork signed and the financial obligations finalised. Anyone can open a door and engage in a negotiation. Anyone can keep the communication going, leading towards the finish line. But only a Closer can close a negotiation. Until you are a Closer, you are not a good negotiator, let alone a great one. Yet when you study the literature on negotiations, you will find a paucity of information on how to be a Closer.

Being a Closer is more akin to salesmanship than to negotiation. But a good or great negotiator knows how to close. Closing begins with a positive, optimistic state of mind that nonverbally transmits the message, in a subtle but persistent manner that we are here to close the negotiation, now.

When all the preparation and groundwork has been done correctly, walking over the finish line together, hand in hand, should be a formality, providing the trigger has been found, and confidence to pull the trigger is there. This “trigger” is set when three factors line up. These are:

  1. You know the other party’s key needs or goals in the deal.
  2. You know that your offer in the negotiation meets those needs or serves those goals.
  3. You know that they also now know or believe this to be the case.

When these three factors converge and you sense that the time is right, the next step is to confidently make the close. It can be as simple as saying pleasantly, “Well, I think we’ve got a deal.” You can look them in the eye with a smile and put your right hand forward to shake hands. After that it’s a simple practical matter of attending to the paperwork and the financial details.

Closing is no more mysterious or complicated than this. There are many closing techniques you can learn, but they all depend on these three “trigger” factors, and on you having the confidence to close the deal when the time comes. If your fear of rejection is unmanageable, then get out of the frontline of negotiations. The success, and failure, experienced in negotiations usually happens at being able to, or not being able to, state the closing line and finalise the deal thereafter. A great negotiator is a great closer.


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