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What’s your power environment?

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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)

42 Environment

Environment can be a source of power. This is why home turf is commonly felt to give one an advantage, and why two parties in tense negotiation will often agree to meet on neutral ground.

An environment can be consciously designed to give one a power advantage. Mussolini, the Italian dictator, famously used this tactic. Public officials, foreign dignitaries, and other important personages who came to see him would be ushered through imposing doors into a great room with marble floors. Directly ahead, at the far end of the room, Mussolini sat in a throne-like chair behind a massive desk, studying or writing some important document. He would ignore the persons walking toward the desk, their footsteps echoing in the room. He would not look up when they arrived, or acknowledge their presence. Finally, he would glance at them and give them permission to sit down in a smaller, less comfortable chair than his own.

Power players know how to design power environments. The classic example in business is the company boardroom, its centre a great table surrounded by solid chairs and walls lined with pictures or portraits of past leaders of the organisation. But there are many different ways to create power environments. Churches, temples, cathedrals, and palaces are all power environments designed to impress an individual with a sense of his or her smallness and insignificance, with humbling effect.

If you have a location where you operate or do business, you can create a power environment that suits your own style, needs, and personality. It can be impressive, elegant, inspiring, or intimidating.  It’s up to you.


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