Berrien’s Persuasion Tools Model

Do you ever wish you could simply convince other people to see things your way in the business world? That would be a powerful ability, of course, as you would be able to win all of your negotiations by persuading people over to your side. While it might not ever be that easy, you can put yourself in a better position by learning a variety of persuasion techniques and methods. Those who are able to negotiate with a high success rate tend to rise to the top in business, which is why you should consider using Berrien’s Persuasion Tools Model.

The idea behind this model is to help you pick out the right technique to use for an upcoming negotiation. As all of the negotiations you enter will be unique, you have to alter your technique in order to match the situation at hand. Trying to use the same negotiation methods each time is a plan which is destined to fail. Be willing to adapt on the go and you should become far more successful in the end.

Berrien’s Persuasion Tools Model

Not only do you need to adapt your negotiating strategy based on the situation in front of you, but you also need to cater to your own personal strengths. What do you do well, and where do you struggle? This model is going to help you pick out the right approach based on your own talents. Over time, you can work on strengthening your abilities in weak areas in order to be able to negotiate from any area of the model as necessary.

The Design of the Model

The labeling of both the vertical and horizontal axis in this model is important. The vertical axis is going to relate to Intuition, while the horizontal axis will cover Influencing. What does that mean? Check out the points below –

  • This axis is where you are going to rate your own intuition when in a negotiation setting. Are you something of a ‘natural’ when it comes to negotiations, or does this situation make you uncomfortable? Some people are more naturally inclined toward negotiations than others, so don’t feel bad if you score low in this rating. For the purposes of using this model, you can simply decide if you have a ‘high’ or ‘low’ degree of intuition in negotiations.
  • Along the bottom of the model, you are going to rate your influencing ability. Again, this is going to be either designated as ‘high’ or ‘low’. Do you feel like you can persuade people to see things in your favor effectively, or do you struggle in this area? If you believe that you are strong in the area of influencing others, you can rate yourself ‘high’ on this axis. If not, give yourself a ‘low’ score in order to land in the proper area of the model.

Once you have decided how to rate yourself on these two axes, you can then find your appropriate negotiating style. Below, you will find a brief explanation of each of the four quadrants included in the Persuasion Tools Model.

Compromise – Low Intuition, Low Influencing

Agreeing to a simple compromise isn’t much of a negotiation tactic, but it may be your best bet if you find yourself in this quadrant. When you don’t feel like you are strong in either the area of intuition or influencing, there won’t be much left to do other than agree to a compromise and move on. If you find yourself in this area and you continue to accept compromises which are not in the best interest of your organization, it may be necessary to turn over the task of negotiation to another party. Or, at least, you may wish to pursue negotiation training in order to improve your skills and performance.

Bargaining – High Intuition, Low Influencing

This is a classic negotiation tactic, and it is probably the one most often used in a business setting. When you are comfortable with your ability to pick the right time to use this method, you can usually settle on a strong deal even if you aren’t great in the influencing department. Bargaining, as you may already know, comes down to each side giving a little back and forth until a deal is struck. You might not always get the best possible deal when you are willing to bargain, but you will be likely to settle the matter quickly while maintaining a good relationship with the party on the other side of the table.

Logic – Low Intuition, High Influencing

The name of this part of the model says it all. Rather than trying to bargain your way to a deal, you are going to lay out a factual, logical argument for your side of the negotiation. A logical argument is not going to work in all settings, but it is the best choice for people who are low on intuition but have a knack for influencing others through the use of facts and figures.

Emotion – High Intuition, High Influencing

Only the best negotiators are going to be able to occupy this area of the model. To be able to negotiate from an emotional position, you will need to be skilled in reading the other party and then responding as necessary. This will be a blend of the other styles of negotiation, as you may have to use a bit of logic and a bit of bargaining in order to settle on a deal. It is unlikely that you will start out in this area of the model, as you are going to need plenty of experience before you have the confidence needed to negotiate on emotion alone.

Negotiations are tough. It can be hard to make your points clearly when there are numerous people involved, and you will always be fighting for a position which is not shared by the other party. The best way to come out on top in this kind of situation is to think about your own strengths and weaknesses first, and then work from there. With the use of Berrien’s Persuasion Tools Model, you should be able to identify the best starting point for your own negotiation tactics.

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