I’m writing this from a vacation trip and I just witnessed a social interaction worthy of publishing.
My 2 year old is bored. He has *nothing* to do and is going back and forth with his siblings seeking their assistance to do something fun. As a dad of 7 kids I can tell you that children are *master* negotiators and we can learn tools from them that can help us in business.
After being turned down several times by others, Noah turned his attention to his oldest brother, ten years his senior. Again, he went in with his best outcome – that his brother would agree to supervise him as he explored the great outdoors.
In no uncertain terms, Joel told him “No, I will not help you.” Noah’s response? A positive question: “Not yet?” Sure enough, moments (and several requests) later he had talked his way into having Joel fix him a fresh cup of apple juice.
Here are three takeaways.
- Persistence – Just because someone tells you no, that doesn’t mean that the final answer is no. He had a second, and a third option available.
- Positive attitude – I’ve long said that God makes puppies and children cute, so you don’t kill them. A smile and a big-eyed plaintive look has worked wonders for my two year old. You’ll be amazed how much better your negotiations will fare when you have a positive attitude and gentle demeanor.
- Re-positioning works! Noah interpreted the “no” as a “not yet.” He immediately re-positioned Joel’s response in terms that were favorable to him – letting Joel know that he wasn’t taking Joel’s first response as his final answer.
As I wrap up this post, Noah has been enjoying his juice and has settled in next to another older brother to see what excitement he can find.
I have a feeling that Noah’s going to end up getting a lot of what he wants from these tips. Which one has worked well for you?