Communication and Personality in Negotiation Paper

Topics: Negotiation, Communication, Dispute resolution Pages: 6 (1712 words) Published: August 17, 2009
Communication and Personality in Negotiation
Nathaniel Bolton
University of Phoenix
Dr. Amber Bass
August 11, 2009

Communication and Personality in Negotiation
Everybody negotiates on a regular basis. People negotiate at work, at home, with friends, family, and coworkers. According to (2008), “Negotiation is the process of two individuals or groups reaching joint agreement about differing needs or ideas” (para.19). Oftentimes people negotiate and are unaware they are negotiating. For some people, negotiating appears easy, but other people view the process of negotiation as a conflict (Lewicki, Saunders, & Barry, 2006). Analyzing the roles of communication and personality in negotiation and how they contribute or detract from the negotiations will be reviewed. Included will be an example of when I have participated in a negotiation situation. Verbal and Nonverbal Communication

“Negotiation is a process of communication in which parties aim to ‘send a message’ to the other side and influence each other” (Beyond Intractability, 2003-2007). Communication techniques are a vital role in negotiating. Negotiating is about effective communications. When negotiating, communication occurs at two levels, the logical level and the pragmatic level (Lewicki, Saunders, & Barry, 2006). A logical and pragmatic message received by the other party is communication. What is said is not the only point, the information inferred, intended, conveyed, or perceived is a vital factor. Thus, tremendous care must be taken to direct pragmatic messages. In order to avoid sending the wrong message negotiators must be aware of the potential issues of pragmatic miscommunication (Lewicki, Saunders, & Barry, 2006). According to Nonverbal Communication (unknown), “nonverbal communications include all forms of communication that are not part of the language that we speak or write” (para. 4). Three types of nonverbal communication that affect negotiations are body language, physical environment, and personal attributes (Nonverbal Communication, unknown). Body language shows insight into the attitude of the originator. One’s body language can demonstrate a positive attitude or a negative attitude. For example, hands on the hip demonstrate confidence whereas insecurity if often displayed by hands completely in the pocket or hand wringing. The physical environment transmits nonverbal messages that can be extremely important to negotiators and include elements of the environment such as available space, distance from or proximity to others people and territorial control (Nonverbal Communication, unknown). Personal attributes such as physical appearance, gestures and facial expressions, eye contact and gaze affect negotiations (Peter Barron Stark & associates, 2000). How to Improve Communication in Negotiation

Communication is the key of negotiation. When communication is disrupted or distorted negotiations are unsuccessful. Communication skills have three techniques for improving in negotiations, listening, questions, and role reversal (Cellich & Jain, 2004). Listening skills are crucial in a conflict situation. Through attentive listening, a negotiator can learn what the other party has to say so that an agreement can be reached. Attentive listeners do more than listen; they analyze and think, and assess what the other party is saying (Cellich & Jain, 2004). Listening well will assist one in assessing and analyzing any situation as a whole. “An experienced negotiator spends more than 50 percent of the time listening; the remaining time is used for talking and asking questions” (Cellich & Jain, 2004, p.138). When dealing with negotiations an important factor is the ability to ask the correct questions. Asking the correct questions allows negotiators to obtain valuable information about the other party’s position, supporting arguments or needs (Lewicki, Saunders, & Barry, 2006). Open questions allow the listener to express her or...

References: (2008). The "Big Five" Personality Dimensions. Retrieved on August 8, 2009. from (2008). Negotiation. Retrieved on August 8, 2009, from
Beyond Intractability (2003-2007). Negotiation. Retrieved on August 8, 2009, from
Cellich, C., & Jain, S.C. (2004). Global Business Negotiations. Manson, OH: Tomson South-Western
Lewicki, R.J., Saunders, D.M., & Barry, B. (2006). Negotiation (5th ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill Irwin.
Nonverbal Communication (unknown). Ch 5 - Nonverbal Communication. Retrieved on August 8, 2009, from
Peter Barron Stark & Associates (2000). Nonverbal Negotiation Skills. Retrieved on August 8,
2009, from
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