Managerial Negotiation We cannot negotiate with those who say, "What's mine is mine and what's yours is negotiable." —John F. Kennedy, 35th U.S. president Negotiation is an integral aspect of management. Successful managers negotiate for increased budget allocations, better purchasing prices, higher salaries for themselves and their subordinates, increased time to finish important assignments, more favorable annual objectives, or even better salary offers when starting with a new company. Many managers, however, shy away from negotiation. They do not feel comfortable doing it because either they have not succeeded in previous negotiations or they have not learned the process of dynamic negotiation. Most knowledge about negotiation, unfortunately, comes from limited personal experience. Managers should take advantage of situations in their personal life that give them the opportunity to negotiate. They can learn from those experiences and improve their negotiating ability, which can then transfer to their management position. Personal experiences can range from buying a car or selling items in a garage sale to negotiating chores and compensation with children. By thus building one's skills, managers will avoid ineffective negotiations in the workplace, which can reduce organizational productivity, demoralize those involved, and generate hostile feelings among other parties.1Furthermore, recent research shows gender differences in the use of negotiation. In general, men initiate negotiation four times more often than women do. This tendency has important consequences in business, particularly concerning pay, promotion, and recognition. Linda Babcock and Sara Laschever report in their book, Women Don't Ask, that only 7 percent of female MB As graduating from Carnegie Mellon University negotiated for a higher salary than the one initially offered by a potential employer, while 57 percent of male MBAs did. On average, those who negotiated raised the initial offer by $4,053. The starting salaries for males were more than 7 percent higher than those for females, over¬all.2Babcock and Laschever believe that a different negotiating style explains most of the gap in women's starting pay, and this gap explains a large part of the persistent pay differential between men and women throughout their careers. NEGOTIATION AND NETWORKING
Networking skills are relevant to managerial negotiation skills. Since negotiating is a process, not an event or a one-shot deal in most business situations, it's important to maintain relationships while negotiating. Negotiating strategically means thinking long-term, building our networks. It means balancing relationships and results, cooperation and competition. It also means using our networks to help us negotiate successfully.
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- Spring '08
- Lao, MSO