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Greedy Deal

Published: Jun 13 , 2017
Author: Ben Byth

Late last week, while busily preparing our response for an RFQ, I was met with a series of interruptions from my colleague - Michael. Amid growing frustrations that I would be staying later and later into the night to finish, I thought to myself… I’ve been on a negotiation course and know exactly what to do…I’ll put a price on Michael’s demands!

With Michael’s next demand I had a quick reply:

Demand             ‘Would you read this for me before I send it?’

Price                    ‘If you read mine, I will read yours.’

My price was quickly accepted and, within a minute or two, I had met my end of the agreement. Now it was Michael’s turn. I handed over 85 pages of government policy to digest. There was a look of astonishment followed by a long pause.

Michael felt ‘had’. It was true, I’d taken advantage of him.

There were two things I had forgotten in my excitement:

  1. Agree what was agreed. A simple ‘agree’ step to ensure we both knew what was involved would have quickly put this to bed. Once Michael knew what he was going to read, he quite likely would have declined and I could have got back to my RFQ.
  2. What makes a good deal. While not always true… more often than not it is important that everyone is happy with the deal, especially if you want them to execute it. Even if you are dealing with a goose and they agree to something they shouldn’t, how likely is it they will be pulled into line when they get back to the office? As it turned out, I did read Michael’s email and I’m still waiting for him to read my 85 pages.

In summary, understand the details of the deal and if a deal is too good to be true, it probably is.


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About the author:

Ben Byth
Ben’s background is in commercial business to business sales. Leveraging studies in organisational psychology, Ben’s previous role was responsible for growing Profiling Online’s bespoke leadership assessment business locally and abroad across industries such as Banking and Finance, Insurance, Travel, Engineering and Professional Services.

Read more about Ben Byth

More posts by Ben Byth

Latest Blog:

Negotiating Lessons from the Banking Royal Commission

The Australian Banking Royal Commission has been quite embarrassing with cover-ups, poor conduct and unethical treatment of customers. But it does bring to light key lessons for negotiators. These lessons are particularly true for those who are perceived to hold the balance of power. In other words, if you are negotiating with someone who is seen to have very little power - there is a high chance your actions will come under public scrutiny at some point. It is highly unlikely the banking industry will be the only one to come under scrutiny. All you need to do to come to this conclusion is read the paper to see similar accusations in industries like retail/grocery buying, leasing, franchising, etc.

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