Let’s talk about how to get more out of your next negotiation or mediation. While this is definitely not an exhaustive list, we’ve put together 5 negotiation tips that can help you as you head towards a mediation, but they also apply to other aspects of life such as purchasing a car, home, etc. Without further ado, here are our Top 5 Negotiation Tips:


1) Know your facts

And make sure your client knows their facts. Spend as much time as you need with them. If they don’t understand, and it comes at them fresh in mediation, they won’t be prepared emotionally to deal with them. The more information you have, the better decision you can make, and the more leverage you have.

2) Leverage

Is there a deadline coming up? Is there a sales bonus that might be due at the end of the month or year? Is there a trial date? Deadlines spur decision. Understand what leverage will do to the case; both for you and against you. And understand the pressure on the other side. Do they have an issue they need to resolve quickly in order to meet their targets?

3) Have a Plan

Think about what your offer and concession strategy will be in advance and then be prepared. By having no plan you’re going to be on the fly, and you’ll never make as good of a decision. You wouldn’t go into trial without a plan, you shouldn’t go into mediation without one either.

4) Listen

Whoever is talking the least is usually ahead. They are getting information, not giving it away. One thing we like to tell people is: listen to understand, not respond.

5) Know The Best Alternative

If you don’t settle, what’s going to happen? What are your chances at trial? How much is it going to cost to get there? What’s the risk? Understanding your best alternative gives you an idea of what your walk-point is.

Think of it this way: if someone needs to sell their house because they’re moving to a new job in another part of the country. They need to sell it sooner rather than later. That’s your leverage, and their walk-point is: how much is it going to cost them to carry that house over the next month? How much emotion and time are they willing to put into it while they try to move? That’s your leverage, and that’s what you need to know so that you can get the best deal you can.


Have more questions? Check out the rest of our site, or schedule an appointment to talk with one of our mediators.