Sunday, June 26, 2016

Business Negotiation

You might have noticed by now that Donald Trump's initial reaction to anything is to say something outrageous and attention-grabbing. Why does he do this? Is he immature and desperate for attention? Does he not think things through, before saying them? Is he just dangerous and crazy?

Actually, this is a business technique, similar to highballing. The idea is that you start off with something huge and outrageous. That way, all the attention gets centered on you, not your competitors. That served Donald Trump very well in the primaries, when he was up against eight competitors; the majority of news stories focused on him, not the others. It also gives you the upper hand in subsequent negotiations, because you look more reasonable and accommodating when you back away from the original position.

I saw a recent example of this in Baby Sitters Club #21: Mallory and the Trouble with Twins. Mallory wanted two things from her parents, so she purposely asked for THREE things. The outrageous third thing she asked for was a new wardrobe. Her parents felt bad about turning down this request, so they were more likely to give in on the other two requests. Also, Mallory came out smelling like roses, when she gallantly agreed to give up the new wardrobe, in exchange for the other two things. But really, she wasn't giving anything up. She wasn't expecting to get the wardrobe anyway!

Maybe that's a silly example, but that's what Trump is doing. He always starts with an outrageous statement, then backpedals away from it later. So whenever there is Trump news, you should probably ignore his first response and wait for his second one, which is his "real" offer. I'm sure he talks more about this technique in his book on business negotiations.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

wow, good point