Business

Essay Assignment International Business Negotiation

Introduction

Negotiations have taken a central position in the management of conflicts, managing stakeholders, making policies and as a key communication component for the organisational gains and its success (Paraschiv and Mihaela, 2009).  Negotiation is considered to be a process that comprises illustration of an individual behaviour dynamics as per the preferences of the opposing negotiating parties, the criticality placed to the negotiation outcomes for a situation and formal or informal objectives such as selection of suppliers, employees, vendors and agreeing to contractual terms, job offers, personal disputes, bargaining with vendors, bargain in shopping, etc.  The negotiation is recognized a popular mode of dispute resolution where the discussion among parties in a meeting is based on settling the dispute and gives control over the process of compromise and to develop solution options (Wade, 2009). On the other hand, the self-awareness towards some of these negotiations situation that is of smaller scale and scope in the day to day life is low among people making them to related negotiation with a specific group of individuals. The objective of this essay is to investigate and critically evaluate the given statement by Lewicki et al. (2011: 2). ‘Negotiation is not a process reserved only for the skilled diplomat, top salesperson, or ardent advocate for an organized lobby; it is something that everyone does, almost daily’. The essay also analyses and discuss with evidence whether or not the negotiation skills are fundamentally similar wherever they are being practiced by people other than official experts, advocates or salesperson than on a daily routine.

Evaluation of the statement

Negotiation is defined as a process involving two or more parties that exchanges offer as well as counter-offers to work out a situation of common concern to take decision jointly to reach consensus for benefits of both or one party (Bendersky and McGinn, 2010). Negotiation is a process of which nearly all people are aware of, like its idea and concept yet many people do not claim to have recognized or have an experience of it. This can be due to the fact that negotiation is not well defined by an individual on a personal level.

The book of Lewicki et al. (2011) examines and stated the negotiation context for all individual. The essay statement assumes that the negotiation process is not only practices and preserved by the accomplished experts in the business groups and for professionals like advocates and experienced salesperson and also, for organized groups but it is for all and is practiced by nearly all on a daily basis.

Although, negotiations are closely associated with the business activities whenever a person is negotiating about the salary, employee negotiating with suppliers for the purchase of material and customers to sell products and services and business negotiation for merger, acquisition and joint venture. In particular, in business organizations or professional domain, the negotiation skills are placed high priority to get positive business outcomes and deals and also for the success of the organisation in an international environment. It can be conferred that negotiation has become a crucial aspect of business as the stake of poor negotiation are high for the organisation (Wood,  2015)  and can lead to negative consequences like loss of business or loss of key suppliers or customers. According to Narlikar (2016), economic negotiations are more well-defined and are associated with high complexity which has broadened their scope and significance in the professional sphere. Consequently, negotiations are recognized as professional negotiation (done in a professional capacity) and as buyer-seller negations (done among two organisations). Thus, it can be said that economic negotiations for business activities are recognized more than social negotiations. On the other side, it is also an observable thing in a person’s life in the form of an informal daily negotiation. Apart from professional life, it can be added that negotiation exists in almost every personal life situation because of which it has become a routine affair due to which negotiation is not given high relevance or recognition in the personal side of life. Negotiation cannot be avoided in different facets of life by people like politicians (for border disputes), managers and employees (work agreements with labour unions), family members in a diverse situation like real estate/ property issues and divorce cases. Also, for instance, bargaining for clothes, shoes, home stuff or food items, getting agreement to decide on which movie or television shows to watch, discussion to decide what to order and from where to order, the place for vacation, to settle personal differences. All are different cases of negotiation in daily life. Thus, it can be said that everyone is a negotiator whether or not they are aware of it in support of the essay statement.

It is analyzed that the negotiators  are problem-solver and can act as cooperative or competitive (Bendersky and McGinn, 2010). In personal conflict and in job negotiations, people are observed to be drawn towards their negotiating parties in a psychological state to achieve positive outcomes to resolve in a fair and reasonable manner (Curhan et al., 2009). Thus, people demonstrate professional conduct while behaving as a cooperative negotiator to reason with the opposing negotiator. However, it is argued that where money is the situation driving negotiation, most people are analyzed to move from problem-solving to competitive style. Similarly, in complex business negotiations, most negotiators adopt competitive style negotiation to move expressively in opposition to their negotiators with the objective to maximize their returns or benefits on their side like advocates/ lawyers.

It can be accessed from this study, that negotiation is considered as a mechanism for all the individuals who seek to resolve an issue in either personal or professional life by means of giving the option and convincing other to arrive at a point of agreement either in a cooperative or competitive style. From this, it can be stated that negotiation is not reserved for a particular group or specific persons but it is a common approach undertaken by all to resolve day to day conflicts in their personal or professional area. Differently, the competitive negotiation (commonly known as tendering method) is for qualified individuals as it requires consideration for scope, price and services, criteria, and specification for making a viable proposal. Here, the process of negotiation is approached as a contest thus, the outcome of this negotiation is a win-lose kind. It can be argued that the art of competitive negotiation is highly skilled which held in reserve for skilled diplomats. This differs from the essay statement when considering the perception of competitive negotiation.

On the other side, it can also be argued that though the act and process of negotiation take place on a routine basis in everyone’s life, it does not lead to effective negotiation which points towards the need of adequate negotiation skills in an individual to become an effective negotiator.  It is argued in the research of Jensen et al. (2015) that big or small kinds of negotiations make use of similar approach and skills to negotiate such as listening and observing skills, questioning, communication skills, persuasive skills, and decision-making skills to resolve conflicts and arrive at mutually beneficial decisions on personal or professional matters. The report of Gilin et al. (2013) declared that individual makes use of interpersonal skills, leadership skills, analytical skills, problem-solving skills, convincing and decision-making skills depending on the integrative (cooperative) or distributive (competitive) type of negotiation.  Among the different negotiators, the advocates are examined to involve in innumerable negotiation on a daily basis and their style is evaluated to be more intuitive and instinctive type and make use of their communication, questioning, persuasion skills, creative thinking skills and listening and observation skills (Wood, 2015). This highlights the gathering of information and making use of relevant information to learn also to listen during the process of negotiation. The negotiation process initiates with methodical preparation for the confrontation, then planning the format of gaining consensus, claiming and offering the solution for implementation (Crump, 2011). It is also examined that many individuals consider that negotiation is for professional like advocates/ activists and salesperson but are unable to realise that they are too negotiating in their lives every day to resolve day to day situations. This kind of stereotype thinking has been passed to in today’s time but it is not true as individual make use of same skills like creative thinking, communication skills, etc. and techniques for conflict management like professionals to solve their day to day problems. This can be supported towards the essay statement as the application of negotiation skills and the mechanism by non-professionals. From the above points, it can be questioned about the non-resemblance among the business and non-business negotiators as from these studies it can be confirmed that negotiation of different range makes use of identical skills.

In essence, it can also be analysed that the style of negotiation and practices of communication varies across culture. It is also evident from the different cases in international business negotiation that negotiators cannot ignore the area of cross-culture such as the case of Apple warranty policy issue to fix the issue with apologies in China (a collectivist culture) and the case of Rana Plaza collapse in Bangladesh that involved negotiation of foreign garment manufactures with trade unions for improving garment worker condition and workplace safety. The variation in negotiation across different culture can be due to the influence of a different cultural variable on the negotiator. It can be evaluated that when the negotiators belong to the diverse culture they may not have a similar perspective, behaviour, and style of negotiation. Hofstede and Usenier (2002) stated that culture variable variation like individualistic vs. collectivistic impact on the personality of negotiator. It can be analysed that in an individualistic culture, the negotiators would be a more self-centred focus on personal gain and thus are likely to form decision independently to achieve an advantage for personal life purpose or personal business. At the same time, in a collective culture, the negotiators can be considered as team negotiator who is likely to take decision jointly basis to avoid team conflict and to achieve mutual benefit from resolving a problem or deal. To support this, the study of Costin (2015)  can be referred that point towards different ways in which the different cultural variables like high and low context culture that impact on the negotiation in relation to preparing for the discussion, initiating, bargaining and closing the discussion which are the common steps in the negotiation process.  This underlines the tendency in high context culture that negotiators are likely to place more focus on the preparation stages in the process of negotiation as they seek to develop personal relationship in forming agreement deal and for long term-perspective the negotiation focus on maintaining the relations once a mutual agreement is successfully reached (Kittler et al., 2011). On the opposing side, it can be analysed that negotiators in culture with low context have a tendency to be less focused on the preparatory stage as they are likely to focus on existing issues rather than developing long term relationships but will introduce their issue directly in a forceful tone without much intervention of the other negotiating party.

Also, considering the process of negotiation, it is identified that day to day negotiations follow the traditionally steps of preparation or planning for the discussion (problem identification) followed by interactions/ bargaining (generating options for solution) and then arrive at a deal/ agreement. For non-professional people, negotiation also serves as a communication process to reach compromise so that each negotiating parties are satisfied to some level.  The study of Pan et al. (2013) highlight that negotiation in daily lives involved the process of gathering and examining of facts and exposing the facts and interest of the parties and undertake the discussion/ bargaining to resolve the dispute or conflict. This is similar to the process followed by the professionals in the resolution of disputes.  However, apart from this, in complex negotiations there are few phase in the negotiation process which is analysed to be interruptions, questioning, or correcting which can lead to conflicting situations (Bendersky and McGinn, 2010). Thus, the negotiation process also involves a sequential situation framing in businesses/ professional negotiation in comparison to simple day to day negotiations which impact the negotiation outcomes like win-win or win-lose. The study of Pfetsch and Landau (2000) stated the negotiation process and outcomes in the international environment is influenced due to symmetry and asymmetry power relations. The symmetry negotiation in international business negotiation can be referred to the situation for arms reduction among the Soviet Union and the United States while asymmetry can be the negotiation of a small country with a big country that highlight unequal relationships. These kind business negotiations power relations can also be described for the relationship among people as weak and strong in terms of material power, equal and unequal wealth who bargains for day to day situations. It is analysed that the negotiating parties are related to the construct of variables which can be personal or organisational, and can be related to the aim, persons involved and negotiator personal variable like skills, knowledge, and understanding, perceptions, attitude, personality motives, and style of negotiation. Moreover, it is analysed that the context of negotiation in business/ professional negotiation is similar to one’s daily life negotiation as it involved cultural context, the presence of a negotiation issue, setting for discussion, time and a proper medium of negotiation. However, it can be added that the different level/ kinds of negotiation put a varying level of pressure on the individual taking up the role of negotiator this differentiates the practiced negotiations from daily negotiations.  The study of Fells et al. (2015) confirmed that individuals tend to put a high burden on them for large scale negotiations.

Many individual in daily negotiations are adopts an integrative style of negotiation which do not demand polished bargain skills as in this negotiation has advantages for the negotiating parties as all the parties win something. Thus, there is cooperation among parties to achieve their specific interests.  This is not always true in business negotiation as parties may not cooperate with each other and outcome of negotiation may be in favour of one party for their self servicing interest. This relates to a distributive negotiation style that requires business negotiation skills.  In such negotiating dialogues/ situation, the role of an argument has been known to hold great significance to settle the difference in opinion among the negotiating parties and on the issues related to business strategy and actions.  In different types of negotiation like personal disputes, trade or commercial transactions or personal disputes, the principle of the convention of self-risk is common as the negotiator is aware of the possibility of getting proved wrong (Freeley, and Steinberg, 2013). Similar to this, the principle of commitment to continue the discussion with logic, clarity judgment principle, questioning principle and principle related to clarifying an argument is followed by people in different negotiating situations to achieve an effective argument (Tindale, 2004).  It can be understood that the argumentation principles are used up by ordinary people making the negotiation process open for all in accordance with the essay statement.

In the contest of ethics in negotiation, it is also analysed that people their own ethical standards to form a boundary amid right and wrong during the negotiation in personal life. In support of this, it is stated that people apply the principle of universality as their key ethical standards which underline that similar decision and action would be taken by other personal facing the same situation (Craver, 2010). This is also true for negotiation involving complex business situations where ethics in negotiation practice are considered to achieve a win-win outcome in the international business landscape and to lower the reputational risk. On the other hand, contrasting from the essay statement it can be analysed that ethical negotiation practices are mostly embraced among advocates and other professionals to act in good faith and honestly as the moral consequence is high in lying and in unethical behaviour (Craver, 2010). Also, it is argued that an inexperienced person may not act with some degree of concern as a professional in negotiating may not hold an ethical standard in a complex environment. It can be evaluated that the practice of ethical negotiation may not have the same preference in informal negotiation equivalent to ethical considerations in the formal business negotiations.

Thus, it can be examined from the several studies conducted in the area of negotiation which analysed that negotiation process has similar variables, contexts, common approach and outcomes for professional or business negotiations as well as in personal negotiations.

In the context of my personal negotiation style, it is analyzed to be the compromising style of negotiation where there are some win and some loss for both the negotiating parties.  As the presence of self-responsiveness in a person during the process of negotiation which places priority to valuing the relationship to a certain extent and trust on each other due to which the negotiator party recognize the loss but give consideration to winning some and losing some over the complete loss (Lewicki and Polin, 2013).  Thus, referring to the essay statement it can be assessed that compromising is a common style of negotiation for ordinary people as it is being used to divide the differences mostly in personal relationships and help them in reaching half way for difficult situations. In professional negotiation also, this is instances where the negotiators end up in compromise to arrive at an agreement in poor time situation when there is not much left to make a proposal or counterproposal in less critical negotiation outcome situation (Fells et al., 2015). Thus, it can be asses that compromise style negotiation are practiced by individual other than professional campaigner or seller in support of the essay statement.

Based on the different evaluation in the negotiation context, it is analyzed that negotiation is more beyond the business management skills and is recognized to be a relevant life skill for all people. Negotiation skills are being employed by an individual in different situations to resolve their personal differences and formal disputes that arise with others on in behalf of others making the process of negotiation and common for all.

Conclusion

It can be concluded that negotiation skills and process not only applies to professional but also to non-professionals as per the research and evaluation in the area of negotiation.  From the different points, it can be concluded that in different negotiations such as small and big negotiations and/or formal and informal negotiations there is a bilateral communication (back and forth) in form of questioning or offering personal and countering them among two or more parties to strike a deal that has common interest to both among the negotiating parties. However, the range of negotiations may have different preferences from the negotiators but all negotiate and undertake decision-making process by utilizing their natural negotiation skills or develop these skills over time and following the traditional approach of negotiation to reach an agreement. Thus, based on the evaluation of negotiation the essay support the statement that negotiation is not reserved for specific individual groups and the process is performed by everyone in their day to day living.

 References

Bendersky, C. and McGinn, K.L., 2010. Perspective—Open to negotiation: Phenomenological assumptions and knowledge dissemination. Organization Science, 21(3), pp.781-797.

Costin, A.F., 2015. Negotiating In Cross-Cultural Contexts. In International conference Knowledge-Based Organization (Vol. 21, No. 1, pp. 185-191). De Gruyter Open.

Craver, C.B., 2010. Negotiation Ethics for Real World Interactions. Ohio St. J. on Disp. Resol., 25, p.299.

Crump, L., 2011. Negotiation process and negotiation context. International Negotiation, 16(2), pp.197-227.

Curhan, J.R., Elfenbein, H.A. and Kilduff, G.J., 2009. Getting off on the right foot: Subjective value versus economic value in predicting longitudinal job outcomes from job offer negotiations. Journal of Applied Psychology, 94(2), p.524.

Fells, R., Rogers, H., Prowse, P. and Ott, U.F., 2015. Unraveling business negotiations using practitioner data. Negotiation and Conflict Management Research, 8(2), pp.119-136.

Freeley, A.J. and Steinberg, D.L., 2013. Argumentation and debate. US: Cengage Learning.

Gilin, D., Maddux, W.W., Carpenter, J. and Galinsky, A.D., 2013. When to use your head and when to use your heart: The differential value of perspective-taking versus empathy in competitive interactions. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 39(1), pp.3-16.

Hofstede, G. and Usenier, J.C., 2002. Cultural Aspects of International Business Negotiations. In International Business Negotiations. pp. 97–136.

Jensen, O.B., Sheller, M. and Wind, S., 2015. Together and apart: Affective ambiences and negotiation in families’ everyday life and mobility. Mobilities, 10(3), pp.363-382.

Kittler, M.G., Rygl, D. and Mackinnon, A., 2011. Special Review Article: Beyond culture or beyond control? Reviewing the use of Hall’s high-/low-context concept. International Journal of Cross Cultural Management, 11(1), pp.63-82.

Lewicki, R.J. and Polin, B., 2013. Trust and negotiation. Handbook of research on negotiation, pp.161-187.

Lewicki, R.J., Saunders, D.M., Minton, J.W., Roy, J. and Lewicki, N., 2011. Essentials of negotiation. Boston, MA: McGraw-Hill/Irwin.

Narlikar, A., 2016. Introduction: Small States in Multilateral Economic Negotiations. In Small States in Multilateral Economic Negotiations (pp. 9-14). Routledge.

Pan, L., Luo, X., Meng, X., Miao, C., He, M. and Guo, X., 2013. A two‐stage win–win multiattribute negotiation model: optimization and then concession. Computational Intelligence, 29(4), pp.577-626.

Paraschiv, D. and Mihaela, B.E.L.U., 2009. Negotiating In A Global Business Environment. Revista Economica, 48(6), pp.9-22.

Pfetsch, F.R. and Landau, A., 2000. Symmetry and asymmetry in international negotiations. International Negotiation, 5(1), pp.21-42.

Tindale, C.W., 2004. Rhetorical argumentation: Principles of theory and practice. US: Sage.

Wade, J., 2009. Defining success in negotiation and other dispute resolution training. Negotiation Journal, 25(2), pp.171-179.

Wood, J.T., 2015. Interpersonal communication: Everyday encounters. Nelson Education.

 

 

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