In the concluding episode of our Business English Podcast series on negotiating in English, weâ€™re going to look at closing the deal.
Success! The hard work of negotiation has paid off. You’ve reached agreement. Now it’s time to close the deal. In this episode, we’ll study skills and language for the final stage of the discussion. In particular, we’ll focus on summarizing details, tying up loose ends, reinforcing the relationship and adopting a positive style. We’ll see that the end of talks presents a great opportunity to build stronger partnerships.
In this show, we will look at two short dialogs that demonstrate different styles of negotiation. In the first, a construction materials supplier, Tony, calls his customer, Paul, to agree to the terms of a deal. In the second, a general manager, Maxine, calls the owner of another company, Peter, to tell him that her board of directors has agreed to buy his company.
1. In the first dialog, what does the supplier, Tony, want to confirm with his customer, Paul?
2. What kind of positive language do Tony and Paul use at the end of the dialog to reinforce the relationship?
3. In the second dialog, does Maxine say that the board has agreed to Peterâ€™s suggested price?
4. From the conversation, does it sound as though Peter will continue to work at his company through the merger?
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In today’s podcast on negotiation skills, we will discuss how to overcome blockage in a negotiation. In particular, we’ll focus on identifying stumbling blocks, exploring alternatives, and moving towards agreement.
Usually we think of blockage in terms of stumbling blocks, or obstacles, to agreement. But blockage can also be any impediment to creating maximum value. In other words, weâ€™re not only interested in removing obstacles to a deal but also in removing obstacles to a better deal. Doing this successfully often requires thinking outside the box, that is, thinking creatively.
1) How does Peter suggest restarting talks with Maxine?
He says he has been â€œthinking aboutâ€ their companies, and if she is still open to the idea he “was wondering” if they could “get together to talk briefly about some other possibilities.” Overall, the tone of Peterâ€™s suggestion is positive and the content is not too specific. At this point, he is just trying to get Maxine interested.
2) What does Peter identifying as the main stumbling block to a deal?
Peter identifies price as the main stumbling block to a deal.
3) What does Peter mean when he says, “It’s not a question of growth for us, it’s a question of survival.”
Peter describes how the overall market tendency is towards increasing consolidation of companies. He is saying that small companies like his and Maxine’s must merge to have a chance to survive in the new market.
4) What is Peter’s key insight that enables Maxine and him to overcome their blockage?
Peter’s key insight is that if Maxine values her own company so highly, she will probably value his company highly as well. Since his ultimate goal is to sell out his business for a handsome profit, he may be able to achieve that goal now by selling his company to Maxine. In other words, he thinks outside the box to reverse the roles of buyer and seller in the negotiation.
In this Business English Podcast episode, we’ll study the skills and language of bargaining. This podcast is part of an ongoing series on negotiation skills.
Bargaining is the process of swapping or trading concessions – in other words, “You give me something, and Iâ€™ll give you something in return.” This is also called making offers and counter-offers. The goal is to reach a compromise – a result in which both sides benefit.
Negotiations don’t always go according to plan. Disagreement is part of life. But to build lasting relationships, coping with failure is even more important than celebrating success. So in this show, we’ll examine a deal that does not get completed. We’ll look at making a final offer as well as expressing dissatisfaction and regret. In particular, we’ll focus on maintaining goodwill even when talks break down.
As you listen, pay attention to how Peter makes a final offer, how Maxine declines it, and how they both work to maintain goodwill.
In this Business English Podcast lesson we’re going to look at the language you can use to clarify and evaluate positions during a business negotiation in English.
An important part of any discussion is making our position clear; at the same time, we must make sure we understand the other side’s point of view. Achieving mutual understanding can help us save money by avoiding missed opportunities. In addition, the ultimate goal of any negotiation is to create value. Therefore, evaluation – determining whether an offer or position is good or bad – plays an important role. So in this show we’ll study stating, clarifying, and evaluating positions.