Seasoned negotiators are well aware that negotiations are often won or lost before the players reach the negotiating table. At a minimum, negotiators should perform the following preparation before commencing formal negotiations:
• Achieve internal alignment so that your negotiating efforts will not be sabotaged by players on your side of the table.
• Score your objectives and walk-away points.
• Create a negotiating timeline.
• Insulate your negotiating team from common negotiations tactics.
• Determine the real goals of the entities and individuals with whom you will be negotiating.
• Create wedges between your opponents and their agents.
• Profile the individuals on the opposing side.
• Gather intelligence on an ongoing basis.
July 17, 2012