How To Use The Zone Of Uncertainty In Your Next Negotiation

One of the biggest questions that we all struggle with when we are in the middle of a negotiation has to do with goals. When a negotiation includes such items as price or delivery dates, we need to understand what we want and then we need to understand how we’re going to go about getting it. This is where the zone of uncertainty comes into play.

The Zone Of Uncertainty

I think that we can all agree that in a negotiation there are two values associated with every issue that is under discussion. The first of these values is the value that you initially ask for. This can be the price that a house is listed at or a salary that is initially requested. The next value is the minimum value that you will accept. This is the value that if the other side moves below, then the deal is off.

The area that lies between these two values is called the zone of uncertainty. Your goal during the negotiation is to get the other side to agree to a value that lies within this area. Of course you’d like it to be somewhere towards the top end; however, you could live with a value that was somewhere towards the bottom end if everything else met your requirements. If you find yourself in the buyer’s role, then you are going to have to make sure that your initial offer is high enough to keep the other side’s attention and low enough to give you room to negotiate.

One of the most challenging things about establishing a zone of uncertainty in a negotiation is that you are going to want to find ways to leave yourself as much room to negotiate as possible. The reason that this can be hard to do is that your offer is going to have to be seen by the other side as being reasonable. The reason that this is so important is because if the other side thinks that you are making unreasonable demands (offering too low of a price) then this negotiation will be over even before it ever got started.

How To Use The Zone Of Uncertainty

The zone of uncertainty is a powerful tool in the hands of a skilled negotiator. Often what will happen is that you’ll start a negotiation by proposing a value such as a purchase price. The other side is going to counter with what they believe is a more reasonable value. Once they have done this, boundaries for the zone of uncertainty for this negotiation have now been defined.

You don’t always have to focus on the value that has been associated with the zone of uncertainty. Once the zone has been established, you now can bring other negotiation items into the mix. There will be a gap between where your offer is in the zone and where the other side is. One way that you can take steps to bridge this gap is to suggest something new that the other side wants or to make a compromise on some other issue that is being negotiated.

Knowledge of the zone of uncertainty can pay off for a negotiator when a negotiation starts to become tricky. They can also help out if you discover that they other side is starting to play negotiation games. The zone will allow you to maintain your perspective on what is working in your negotiation and what is not working.

What All Of This Means For You

The key to having a successful negotiation is to make sure that you have a good understanding of your goals. One way to go about making this happen is to take steps to establish a zone of uncertainty around a specific part of the negotiation. This will allow you to focus on what you want to get out of the negotiation.

A zone of uncertainty is created when you determine what the maximum value that you would either like to get or are willing to pay. Then when you determine the minimum value that you’ll accept or the value that you want to start with the zone has been established. If you can get the other side to agree to a value that falls within the zone then you will have been successful.

The zone is a powerful negotiating tool that can be used to gain the upper hand in a negotiation. The next time that you are negotiating, spend the time to determine the zone that bounds the value that you want to obtain. Knowing what your upper and lower limits are, you’ll be in a much stronger position.

Presentation Confidence: Find It! Create It! Groom It!

One quality that sticks out to me as make or break in athletics and is common among all the greats is confidence. You never see someone win the gold medal at the Olympics who is timid or unsure of his or her abilities. It’s a quality that can truly take someone from good to great in anything. This goes for pitches and presentations too. Ever walk away from a speaker who moved or inspired you that wasn’t confident about their subject or their mastery of it?

Here are three tips to get you more confident before your next speech so you thrive next time you step in front a group of people.

Know your stuff: This would equate to having great fundamentals in sports. These are the things that are the foundation of your skill, and in your speech it is really as simple as knowing your topic well. Be familiar with the subject, so that you can answer questions, and be able to adjust in case something goes wrong. You’ll be more comfortable and your audience will sense it.

Practice: Pretty obvious, but I think it’s still important to point it out. You are never going to be confident giving a speech if the first time you present is in front of your audience for the real deal. No athlete competes without putting in hours at the gym or on the practice field first. Practice out loud, and try to practice it at least once in front of another person… dogs don’t count here. My goal is always to practice the full speech three times before the real one.

Posture: Someone in your life has probably told you to stand up straight or not to slouch; well for presenting they were dead right. This helps in two ways. The first is that it makes you look more confident to your audience, and that means they’ll be more receptive to your message and view you as the authority. The second is physiological. When you stand up straight and push your shoulders back your brain actually produces hormones that make you more confident and less stressed. It’s important during your presentation, but I would like to challenge you to practice it all day. I like to use doorways to remind myself. Every time I walk through a doorway I try to check my posture and correct it if I can.

There you have it, 3 easy ways to be more confident (or at least seem more confident) in your presentations and pitches. Know your stuff, practice your presentation 3 times, and practice good posture (hopefully all day).

Try them out for your next big speech and reap the rewards of a more powerful message.

3 Proven Strategies to Convey Real Emotion in Your Next Presentation

Ok, you choose a killer topic (check). You researched your topic and you confident that you can answer any questions that may be asked (check). You have a bulleted and super organized outline (check). Your Introduction, body and conclusion are perfect (check). You are all set, no!

Having all those is a great start, but you need to make sure people are going to “get” what you are presenting.

Proper use of your voice is crucial. Used properly you can give life to your presentation, stir up emotion, inspire someone, drive home the points that are important about your topic. Ok, how do you it?

Here are the three tips to instantly liven up and presentation…

o Adjust your volume
o Change your pace
o Vary your pitch

Adjusting Your Volume – This is a delicate subject, because if you adjust your volume to high, people will become annoyed. If you go to low, they won’t be able to hear you. If you do it many times, it will lose it effectiveness. So, how is it done properly?

Be natural, you do it all the time in natural conversation. If you need to read something “strong” or have to be forceful varying your volume will make a lasting impression. Generally raising your voice is preferred to lower it.

Change of Pace – Words flow in conversation as our minds formulate into speech, this happens at different frequencies. This is the way a presentation should e given. If a portion of your presentation is exciting (or your excited about it) speak a little faster.

The likewise is true also, if the presentation has a somber aspect, speak a little slower in those parts too.

Don’t prepare the wording too carefully. Notice, I didn’t say not to prepare? Always prepare! What I mean is do not become monotone with the presentation at the same pace all the way through.
Quick Tip: Speaking from a bullet outline will almost solve this issue instantly. Key phases and thoughts will come to mind.

Vary Your Pitch – Excitement and enthusiasm when used in normal conversations are accented by a higher pitch in the person’s voice. Do the same thing in your public speech. The reverse is true with sorrow or anxiety; most people use a lower pitch when expressing these emotions. People have a natural “feeling” (or pitch) with certain emotions.

These are proper to use in public speaking as well. Just don’t speak the words, feel the words. All dynamic speakers project these emotions and you can too with a practice.

These three tips will spice any presentation. Used in the right amount you will bring out the full flavor of your presentation.