Communicating across borders
Business negotiations are generally seen as a commercial act between two or more corporations. However, if you are sitting across the table with a representative of a major company, it is important to remember that you’re talking to a person.
In many cases, it is as important to consider the priorities and position of the individual with whom you are talking as it is to consider the priorities of the company they are representing. All deals are made between people.
Although it is rare for people to openly express themselves and say what they are truly thinking when the negotiations begin, they often begin to relax and speak more openly as time goes by if you’re able to create an environment of trust. It is this feeling of trust that is necessary for productive negotiations to commence. It is important to understand the other person and open up to them, so that you can earn their trust and help them open up to you.
By understanding the background, culture and expectations of the other person, it is easier to quickly improve the atmosphere of the negotiation as well as the chances of a successful outcome.
There is no guarantee that your idea of “common sense” is the same as that of the other person. The more you understand the other person’s perspective and honestly explain your own, the more you increase the probability of reaching a mutually-profitable agreement.
Everybody from the CEO and sales managers to the recent graduates that have just joined your staff are all representatives of your company. The language they use when contacting customers or suppliers greatly influences the impression of the entire company. When writing emails, making telephone calls, visiting factories, or attending meetings, the language used should be suitable for the occasion and easy to understand.
As it is very common for English to not be the first language of at least one person, it is important to keep vocabulary and expressions as simple as possible.
We can help you with language suitable for various situations.