There’s a lot more to being a good leader than just being smart. People who have studied great leaders have identified certain traits that are common to these people, whether they are in business, politics, or any other field. Some of these same leadership traits can also be useful in a negotiation. Here are some of the ways in which wise leadership and wise negotiation converge.
A sense of fairness
A strong leader always treats people fairly, including employees, customers, and everyone else. If employees feel that they are being treated unfairly, it can create resentment and undermine the leadership. Ensuring that everyone is treated honestly and fairly engenders a greater sense of respect and loyalty; thus, this is an important trait of wise leaders.
This same sense of fairness is beneficial in negotiations as well. It can help you to establish trust during the process so that you can work with the other person to achieve an outcome that is fair to all parties.
Look for mutual benefit
Great leaders look for solutions that can satisfy everyone’s interests not just their own. By ensuring that the needs of customers, employees, shareholders, and others are considered, it creates an environment where everyone can be pleased with the decisions and the results. In a negotiation, looking for this mutual benefit can change the dynamic from an adversarial one to a situation where the parties are looking for shared solutions that benefit both of them. This is how you can achieve a win-win result that both parties are happy with.
Sometimes making a good decision means detaching the emotions so that you can weigh your options dispassionately and logically. Good leaders know how to do this so that they can make wise decisions. In negotiation, you also need to avoid becoming overly attached to a particular plan or outcome. Instead, keep an open mind and be willing to consider suggestions and alternatives. Bringing too many emotions into the process can cloud the issues and lead to poor decisions.
“Great leaders effectively communicate their higher purpose.” -Steve Brown