A student has to negotiate at many places like a professional marketer or businessman and he is expected to yield good results. Like negotiations at business and professional level, every negotiation at all levels is worthwhile. By all levels mean that negotiation is not confined to any specific situation but it is useful for any situation. A student can also be involved in negotiations and those negotiations are important for him because of value out of negotiations. In this paper, my negotiation with laptop retailer was discussed which I was going to purchase for educational and recreational use. Therefore, a good and effective laptop means that I would not be worry if it can result into bad performance. Under different heads below, negotiation has been analyzed.
Negotiation was taken place in two intervals following a brief visit of the retail shop during laptop market visit. It means that if brief visit also included then it negotiation would consist of three steps. During the market visit, I visited many retail and some wholesale shops along with some specialty shops. During the visit, I analyzed retail shops in terms of variety of laptop unites with them and initiative driven nature of retailers. Under these parameters, I selected ABC retail shop. Then, second phase of negotiation came when I took information from him on cell phone and email. Third, phase of negotiation took place in the retail ship which resulted in final purchase of the product. All parts of negotiations were important and these parts make up the negotiation setting although the most important was third stage when purchase was made.
In the negotiations, mainly two participants were present, i.e. me and the retailer. Secondly, a salesman was also there to assist the retailer and that salesman was also advising me in an attempt to convince me for the purchase. However, this paper discusses the negotiation between the two main participants.
Issues at hand:
The issue at hand for the negotiation is purchase of laptop and it seems to be totally my interest. I want to purchase laptop and the retailer wants to sell me laptop. So, negotiation has purpose at each of the two sides of negotiation. My concerns during purchasing laptop included best match between quality and cost so that I could enjoy maximum superior quality out of this purchase. On the other hand, I was also concerned about after sale services so that in case of any inconvenience or bad performance I could file my complaint. On retailer side, issues surrounded convincing me for the purchase while he was just trying to convince me for purchase of laptop of any brand. It was because he had variety of laptop brands with him.
Planning and preparation that took place:
Planning and preparation for negotiation consisted of getting information about suitable retailer and different brands of laptop. For this purpose, I took information from number of sources including internet, friends, laptop market, and print reviews of different brands in newspapers etc. on the other hand, retailer’s planning and preparation consisted of coming up with different options and alternatives to convince me for the purchase (Root, 2016).
So far as negotiation strategy was concerned, I used silence and time tactic for this purchase (Steele, 2016). I remained silent most of the time and took time to respond to what retailer was saying me to convince. So in simple, my strategy was to be careful enough so that retailer could not get benefit of my first ever negotiation for this purchase. This is not an expert strategy but I have found it useful for this negotiation with laptop retailer.
Objectively describing actual events that occurred
It is important to discuss actual events that occurred during the course of negotiations because it is important to look into the ways that come during the process. I have noted one thing which is very distinct which is about carefulness of both parties. When I visited the market to select suitable retailer I came to know that every retailer was quite professional. The ABC retailer which was selected for the purchase had distinctive qualities. He welcomed me and let me decide which I wanted to say and ask. During initial steps, I noted that he convinced me through information and he did not tell a single word which was not professional. I asked very childish questions and he responded with calmness. I asked fake questions by saying that I purchased a laptop which got heated very much. I further said that often laptops had graphic card problems and I was very doubtful about these problems. But he did not categorically deny these faults and problems and said that these problems might occur and there were incidents that such problems would occur. His intentions and strategy were not intensive or assertive but he was just clearing mind. At this point, I felt that I was heavily influenced by him.
During email and cell phone contact, he proved to be good listener. Then for final purchase, I came to his retail shop and I was full of investigative questions. I knew his personality and way of communication therefore; I came with planning and after well preparation. I asked specifications of different models of laptops. He replied with detailed information on specifications. I was concerned about the processor speed, Ram, and Hard Disk. Moreover, I was also concerned with graphic card of the laptop. He told me with different specifications but there was found tradeoff between hard disk and processor. My priority was graphic card because it assisted whole system and efficiency of processor was also dependent on it. He provided me with plenty of alternatives and each alternative was answer to my demand and required specifications. This irritated me and I said that he had alternatives and he should not have responded with alternatives but with clear decision. I found that he was enjoying facility of alternatives and plenty of choices. However, those choices and alternatives were aligned with my desired choices.
Analysis of key events in the negotiation
Above description of key events occurred during the negotiation is useful to know the series of happening of events. In the following the analysis of these events would be given. Mainly, three main events have been important to be discussed in the following and those events are selection of retailer for purchase, contact through cell phone and email, and day of final purchase. I consider process of selection of retailer as important part of negotiation process. I would give him maximum marks for this phase as he utilized excellent skills to make me purchase laptop from him. At the time of contact through cell phone and email, I found him quite impressive. He did not leave a room for me to think to choose another retailer. During these phases of negotiation, my focus had been asking questions which meant I did not have arguments to favor my position. At the purchasing day, I asked questions and he kept presenting me different brands of laptop. This ultimately irritated me because this was not good negotiation skills from him because he should have answered my questions with solid arguments. There I felt that he was gaining benefit of his position as I had little options before his plenty of options.
Integration of readings, theory, and concepts appropriate
The analysis and description of the purchase negotiations for laptop have been provided above and in the following appropriate readings and theories and concepts have been noted. The relationship theory of retail is associated with it because I felt that I am in relationship with the retailer in the result of interactions with him (Hadjikhani & Bengtson, 2004). This occurs especially when e new customer like me has interaction with the retailer. There is another concept in retail purchasing and that is about regarding difference between committed and less committed customer. During this negotiation process I have found me committed customer because I show trust on retailer and I have selected the retailer after close observation and analysis. Like a committed customer, I valued plenty of access to information and it is concept that less committed customer observed less changes if he had been exposed of little information. On the contrary, more committed customers gave importance to access to plenty of information (Steenhaut & Kenhove, 2005). Another concept which is related with retail purchasing is opportunism in which both parties want to take maximum benefit of the purchase (Al-Khatib, Malshe, Sailors, & Clark III, 2011). In this negotiation, both were trying to get maximum benefit out of the deal but there seemed to be less role of opportunism because I was committed customer and we were negotiating in a bit loyal relationship.
Discuss what should/could have been done differently
Above analysis and description of negotiation deal provide room for betterment as well because it is found that there might be better deal on that day. During the purchase of laptop, retail also sold me accessories of laptop including couple of speakers, cooling pad, and smart keyboard. I now thought that I should have benefited from these accessories. He asked me for my priority of graphic card then I told that I was concerned with heat effect of laptop. In the result, he sold me these accessories in which cooling pad was considered to be solution of my concern. He sold me these things to make me realize that I was in need of these things. In fact, I should have asked bundle discount from him. Although, I adopted silent and time strategy but it ended at over dependence on retailer. I just asked questions and he benefited of his position to show me different alternatives and options present with him. It might be due to his shop and environment. In this context, I should have been along with my friend who would have kept me assisted during the purchase (Hedges, 2013). I am not regretting of my purchase but just pointing out areas of improvement which could have or should have been done better.
Lessons learnt for the future
This paper is reflection on a negotiation deal to purchase a laptop by me from a retailer. It has come to know that relationship theory of retail has been beneficial for making purchase with retailer. Having relationship with the retailer is helpful to win the trust but sole responsibility of good purchase always lies on the customer. I am satisfied with the purchase but I have learnt that over dependence on retailer is not good strategy. I used time and silent strategy for this purchase and this made me passive and exposed to retailer’s actions. Moreover, I learnt that in future, I should go with a friend so that I can better respond to requirements of retailer. Further, I should collect information as much as possible regarding the product to be purchased so that I can better negotiate (Buell, 2007). Although, both parties in the negotiation have been friendly but I consider opportunism as an effective concept because it can guarantee value for purchase.
Summary of self-evaluation of negotiation style and strengths and weaknesses
I feel that my negotiation style needs improvements and I should be initiative oriented. In response to retailer’s many options, customer should rely on alternatives and options of competitors of retailer. This option can lead retailer to thin that the customer can choose another retailer as well. However, strength of my negotiation style is that I tend to build relationship after thorough interaction and it is helpful for strategic and future interactions with retailer. Weakness of my negotiation style is that I remain passive in negotiations which may be harmful if I interact with opportunist parties. Although, here only laptop was under purchase and this might be less important product but in the long run this strategy is less effective.
The negotiation paper concludes that negotiation is important part of practical life and everyone should learn the art of negotiation. One of the learning ways is to evaluate one’s negotiation style. This is what has been done in this paper in which live negotiation with retailer has been described, analyzed, and then learning outcomes have been found. This is found that negotiation styles should be changed according to the situation and this dynamism is secret of success. There is no hard and fast rule to negotiate but relationship and opportunist style both have been found effective in negotiation. Relationship style guarantees long term relationship while opportunist style guarantees maximum benefit out of the negotiation.
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