DISCUSS THE VARIOUS NEGOTIATION STYLES, INDICATING HOW PERCEPTION AND PSYCHOLOGICAL TRAPS MAY INFLUENCE THE CHOICE OF AND PROCESS WITHIN RESPECTIVE NEGOTIATION STYLES.
Clients come to lawyers for all sorts of reasons. Civil cases dockets have become more backlogged. As all types of civil suits have become more complex and expensive to prepare for trial, through extensive motion practice and use of experts, interest in alternative forms of dispute resolution have increased. These alternative have long been in existence. Negotiation is one of the salient features of alternative dispute resolution. It is a fact of life. Like Moliere’s Monsieur Jourdain, who was delighted to learn that he had been speaking prose all his life, people negotiate even when they don’t think themselves doing so. It is a basic means of getting what you want from others. It is a back and forth communication designed to reach an agreement when you and the other side have some interests that are shared and others that are opposed. Negotiation is an interpersonal decision making process necessary whenever we cannot achieve our objectives single -handedly. It is critical to remember that negotiation is not a competitive sport. When you compete, your objectives are to beat the other party, to gain a better result, to succeed when they fail. People negotiate in order to add value to the result they would have reached if they were to attempt to reach an objective without the co-operation of the party negotiating with. If you can achieve your ends without the co-operation of the other parties, there’s effectively no reason to negotiate Negotiation requires a tremendous amount of creativity, flexibility, analysis and planning. Each situation is different and so each negotiation may be resolved in its own unique way. Some of the basic elements of negotiation involves:
Process refers to how the parties negotiate; the communication between them and the stages in which all of these play out. Behaviour refers to the relationship among these parties, the communication between them and the styles they adopt. Substance is what the parties negotiate over; the agenda, the issues, the options and the agreement reached. Negotiation styles and etiquette vary with the person, their beliefs, culture, market, age, interests and skills. Our style of negotiation can define whether we grind into a deadlock, or create value and an enduring relationship. Approaching negotiation with a defined set of tactics is impartial. Tactics are more detailed statements and actions plus responses to others statements and actions. Some add persuasion and influence, asserting that these have become integral to modern day negotiation success and so shouldn’t be omitted. One has to learn all the time and be prepared to change at any new development of information. In choosing an effective style and strategy, it is important to bear in mind that: * No particular combination of style is always more effective * You should consider being flexible in your choice of style and strategy throughout the negotiation process * Your choice of style and strategy should always have everything to do with your client’s interests in mind and nothing to do with your own ego(by the lawyer). * Availability of time and amount of money/ value at stake Perceptions and Psychological traps influence the choice of and process within any negotiation style. Human beings aren’t computers. They are creatures of strong emotions who often have radically different perceptions and have difficulty communicating clearly. Emotions typically become entangled with the objective merits of the problem .They have the potential to play either a positive or negative role in negotiations. Decisions as to whether or not to settle rests on the emotional factors. Negative emotions can cause intense and even irrational behaviour and...