Assess Your Negotiating Style*

To assess your negotiation style while preparing for negotiations, complete the following three steps

  1. Complete the assessment to understand your negotiating style.
  2. Use the assessment to analyze the style of the other side. This is especially important in cross-cultural negotiations.
  3. Do a gap analysis. Locate the major gaps between your style and the other side’s style. Focus on these gaps when preparing for the negotiation.

Additional tip: After completing the gap analysis, try a role reversal exercise. Use the other side’s style as you practice the negotiation with a friend who will use your style. This will enable you to better understand the other side’s style.

Negotiating Style Assessment

Listed below are ten important traits of a person’s negotiating style and approach. Each trait demonstrates a wide range of variations, which can be organized along a continuum, as has been done below. With respect to each trait, indicate with an X where your own negotiating style and approach in business negotiation falls along each continuum.

Goal: What is your goal in business negotiations: a binding contract or the creation of a relationship? Contract |___|___|___|___|___| Relationship
Attitudes: What is your attitude toward negotiation: win/lose or win/win? Win/Lose |___|___|___|___|___| Win/Win
Personal Styles: During negotiations, is your personal style informal or formal? Informal |___|___|___|___|___| Formal
Communications: Is your communication style in negotiation direct (for instance, clear and definite proposals and answers) or indirect (for instance, vague, evasive answers)? Direct |___|___|___|___|___| Indirect
Time Sensitivity: In the negotiation process, is your sensitivity to time high (for instance, you want to make a deal quickly) or low (you negotiate slowly)? High |___|___|___|___|___| Low
Emotionalism: During negotiations, is your emotionalism high (that is, you have a tendency to display your emotions) or low (you hide your feelings)? High |___|___|___|___|___| Low
Agreement Form: Do you prefer agreements that are specific (that is, detailed) or general? Specific |___|___|___|___|___| General
Agreement Building: Do you view negotiation as bottom up (reach agreement on details first) or top down (begin with agreement on general principle)? Bottom Up |___|___|___|___|___| Top Down
Team Organization: As a member of a negotiating team, do you prefer having one leader who has authority to make a decision or decision making by consensus? One Leader |___|___|___|___|___| Consensus
Risk Taking: Is your tendency to take risks during negotiations high (for instance, your opening offer to sell is extremely high) or low? High |___|___|___|___|___| Low