A very cool negotiating technique that is easy and has proven to be very successful is what I call “one more thing”.

Let’s say that you have been negotiating an agreement, have made a few concessions, and are ready to finalize the agreement. In the back of your mind is a lingering doubt that maybe you gave away too much, or you have left money on the table. You want the deal to go through and you will be happy with price and terms as currently negotiated, but still you wonder if there is a way to improve it. But, you don’t want to lose the deal by pressing too hard or offending the other party.

In this situation, why not ask for “one more thing?” I recommend that you approach it as follows. Say something like, “I think we have negotiated fairly and I look forward to living up to my end of the agreement. I am committed to doing this. That said, I need your help with one more thing. What I would like is for you to include (whatever else you want)”.

Next, pause and listen. I would expect an uncomfortable moment or two. I find that there are two typical responses. First and mostly likely, the other side will say, “Let me work on it and get back to you.” The outcome typically is a yet another concession and a final small victory for you. This means that your intuition was right and that there still was money on the table.

The second response is often a quick rebuff such as, “Hey, I can’t do anything else. This is the best that I can do.” This negative response is often very sincere. At this point, I recommend you reply, “I understand and I look forward to honoring the agreement.” You still get the original deal. In this case, you have confirmed that you did not leave any significant money on the table and you can sleep at night knowing that you negotiated well.

Always ask for one more thing.

John Bradley Jackson
© Copyright 2006 All rights reserved.
Please visit my website at www.firstbestordifferent.com

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  1. Brian

    Coming from the car business…this is exactly how the real professionals negotiate. With them, not one penny is going to be left on the table if you’re not in a good negotiating position. Mind if I share this posting?

  2. Brian,

    Blogs are for sharing. Be sure to include the proper citation.


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