Body Language in Negotiations

Sales Pro Source
September 2, 2013 — 1,193 views  
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Body language is incredibly important to any form of negotiation. There are many points that can be made about expressing your points through body language, rather than just verbal sayings. Actions can often speak louder than words, and when you match your body language to what you want to accomplish you will see greater success.

One tactic that many negotiators have developed is flinching. This is one of the oldest trained tactics that people learn, yet it is seldom seen in practice. One of the best times to flitch is when another party makes an offer or sets a price. This is a visual reaction that shows the other party that there offer isn’t enough and can often make them feel uncomfortable with what they presented to you.

Another tactic is to look shocked when an offer is presented to you. While this will bring similar results as a flitch, this tactic is much easier for beginners to learn to do naturally. A shocked look will show the other negotiators that you didn’t expect that low of an offer to be mentioned, leaving them to rethink their proposal. If someone attempts a recognizable flitch on you, resist the temptation to automatically reduce your price or offer additional services.

On the other hand, should the negotiating party mention something that is overly favorable to you, your body language will need to reflect that as well. In this situation, you need to act as if the offer they suggested is typical and to be expected. Avoid a shocked or surprised look and try to keep your face firm and friendly.

Matching your facial expressions to the tone of the conversation can also be quite helpful. It helps to show others that you are listening to what they have to say and that you have genuine concern for them. Much like any other conversation you would have among friends, your face should display the correct amount of emotion for the situation.

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