Top 10 Negotiation Tips for Dairy Producers

April 20, 2011 05:59 AM

The art of negotiating is a learned skill, one of many skills professionals must master to be consistently successful in business today. The ability to negotiate can be an extremely advantageous skill for dairy producers, especially when faced with high input costs, challenging labor issues and complex financial transactions.

David Solberg, manager of learning and development for Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health, recently led a negotiation workshop for the Dairy Calf and Heifer Association (DCHA) board and 2011 leadership class.

Solberg covered negotiation principles, styles and self-assessment during a half-day leadership program during the DCHA Conference in Lake Geneva, Wis.

Regardless of profession, people negotiate all day long, both personally and professionally, Solberg said.

Here are his top 10 tips for successful negotiations with DCHA members:

  1. Never negotiate with someone who believes you need them more than they need you.
  2. Always know what and how much is negotiable.
  3. Successful negotiations come from preparation.
  4. Know your competition and their strategy.
  5. Never assume. If you don’t know, find out before beginning your negotiation.
  6. Confidence deems success.
  7. Never lose control of your emotions if you want to control the negotiations.
  8. Never give a concession without getting something in return.
  9. Be aware of acting too quickly. Time is your friend – pause, slow down and think.
  10. Have alternatives, or never let an opposing negotiator know that your alternatives are limited.
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