Let’s go hunting, shall we? If you are getting ready to enter into a sales negotiation, then you need to make sure that you have collected all of the information about the deal and the other side of the table that you can. In order to do this, you’re going to have to get good at hunting for information. Let me act as your hunting guide…
You Can’t Know What You Don’t Know
Before you fire up your computer to Google the other side of the table or start to shell out the bucks to get “inside” information from someone who used to work there, stop. You’re missing the first step in this process.
The very first thing that you are going to want to do is to take a moment and determine what you need to know in order to make the sales negotiation successful. This means that you can’t just be working with some vague ideas about what you want, instead you’re going to have to take the time to actually write things down. It’s only by taking this extra step that you’ll be able to remember what you want to find out.
Location, Location, Location
Now that you have a firm grasp of just exactly what it is that you want to find out before the negotiations start, your next step is going to be to find out where you’ll have to go in order to get that data. This is where you’re gong to have to get creative.
If you’re not careful, you may end up picking the wrong places to go. This can be a big waste of both your time and money. The right way to go about doing this is to find someone who knows the answers to the questions that you are asking. Even if they can’t tell you what you need to know, based on their experience they should be able to at least point you in the right direction.
Things will get out of hand quickly if everyone on your negotiating team runs off to collect the information that you need. Instead, you’re going to want to pick the right person to do the job.
What you are going to be looking for is someone that you can trust to sort through a large amount of information quickly and get the answers that you need. The most important part of this task is going to be to pick someone who can do a complete job – someone who will get all of the answers that you are looking for. If you need to keep sending them back to get more, then that will just be a time wasting distraction.
Danger Zone Issues
When it comes to collecting the information that you may need in order to be successful in your next sales negotiation, you’ll quickly run into some potentially serious issues. We all want to have as much information as possible; however, it’s how we get it that counts.
There are a lot of legal and morally acceptable ways to collect the information that you’ll need to do well in your next negotiation. At the same time, there are a lot of shady and unscrupulous ways to collect information also. Clearly things like breaking into the other side of the table’s offices or computer network to find what you are looking for are just flat out wrong.
More often than not, things are not that clear cut. You are going to have to decide on where to draw the line. Once you’ve done that, you’ll have to inform the rest of your team so that everyone knows what they can (and cannot) do to get the best information possible.
What All Of This Means For You
In the world of sales negotiations, information is king. What this means for you is that before you start any negotiation, you are going to have to do your homework and collect as much information about the topic being negotiated as well as about the other side of the table as you can.
In order to get the information that you need, you are going to have to identify what you want, how you are going to get it, and who’s going to be in charge of doing your research. You’ll also have to deal with the delicate issue of just how far you are willing to go to learn what you need to know.
At the start of a negotiation, the outcome may have already been decided. Ultimately the side that knows the most about the topic being negotiated and the parties doing the negotiation stands the best chance of coming out ahead. Do your homework and this could be you!