6 Reasons Why Managers Need Negotiation Skills

August 17, 2023

6 Reasons Why Managers Need Negotiation Skills

Managers in today's business landscape face complex challenges that require a diverse skill set to overcome. Among the critical competencies that managers should develop, negotiation skills play a vital role. These skills are essential for establishing stakeholder relationships, achieving business objectives, and resolving workplace conflicts. Without confidence in these areas, advancing beyond mid-level management can be difficult.

Here are six reasons why negotiation skills are crucial for professional development and how you can improve your proficiency:

Addressing Interpersonal Conflicts

Negotiation skills help managers effectively handle interpersonal conflicts by finding mutually agreeable solutions and avoiding damage to workplace relationships. By identifying underlying issues, boosting internal communication, and facilitating relationship management, managers can create positive work environments that result in cost savings. Studies show that employees spend nearly three hours per week dealing with conflict, amounting to significant financial losses. Enhancing negotiation skills enables managers to reach agreements and resolve differences before they escalate into major conflicts.

Master Negotiation on Behalf of Your Company

Negotiation skills are vital when dealing with external stakeholders, such as suppliers. Effective communication, active listening, and conveying your company's needs and objectives are essential for establishing trust and achieving mutually beneficial outcomes. Successful negotiations can lead to strategic partnerships and business growth, as exemplified by Apple and LG Display's collaboration. The negotiations between the two companies resulted in a fruitful partnership, contributing to the success of the iPhone X.

Accelerate Your Professional Growth

Negotiation skills can propel your career forward and lead to increased salary prospects. Strong negotiation skills enable managers to build lasting relationships with clients and suppliers, resulting in increased profits and revenue. These accomplishments create opportunities for career advancement. Additionally, negotiation skills allow managers to negotiate components of their own salary and benefits packages, such as pay raises, flexible work schedules, and increased responsibilities.

Optimize Value

As managers, one of our main objectives is to ensure that our teams' work creates value for the organization. Negotiation plays a crucial role in this process. By building trust, finding common ground, and increasing agility, managers can create value in negotiations. Successful negotiations result in mutually beneficial outcomes and can turn stalemates into productive deals.

Expect the Unexpected 

Organizational change is inevitable, and negotiation skills are invaluable for navigating unexpected situations. Whether it's market fluctuations, stakeholder disputes, supply chain disruptions, regulatory changes, or staffing issues, managers equipped with negotiation skills can effectively communicate change and propose viable solutions. These skills enable managers to adapt to changing circumstances and minimize potential disruptions.

Enhance International Business Relationships

In today's globalized economy, strong negotiation skills are crucial for succeeding in international business. Dealing with diverse cultural and legal environments requires managers to be adept at navigating challenges such as language barriers, cultural differences, managing global teams, and understanding foreign politics and policies. By developing cross-cultural negotiation skills, managers can foster productive relationships and make informed business decisions in international contexts.

Improving your negotiation skills as a manager is essential for understanding and addressing the needs of your team and organization. By cultivating these skills, you can effectively manage conflicts, negotiate for your company, advance your career, maximize value, prepare for the unexpected, and succeed in the global business landscape. Strengthening your negotiation abilities will not only benefit your professional growth but also contribute to the success of your organization.