BluBonsai’s e-newsletter | September 2020
Every few months, we take a look at high stake negotiations and high profile events conducted on the world stage. We analyze from a negotiation process perspective. It is not intended to state fact but rather to provoke thought.
Let’s have some fun! – Susie
The POWER OF PROCESS
For months we have been watching and listening to …
And we are still listening. How has this immunologist become such a powerful and trusted figure? Why is this so and why do we keep listening? Let’s have a look.
#1. Straight facts with a steady hand, always.
At a time, when everything seems unpredictable and chaotic, Dr. Fauci offers clarity and conviction, always. He believes in the power of facts and the efficacy of data and he always has. He has never changed on us. We have come to count on him to give us what he believes to be true regardless of what that means, where he is, or who is with him. Dr. Fauci has earned the presumption of credibility.
While we have often wait in angst for the information, “The What” he is going to tell us, we take comfort in the predictability of “The How” he will deliver the news: by providing the straight facts with a steady hand.
At a time when substance uncertainty is high, the predictability in his Process is awesome powerful.
#2. When another speaks, we listen to … well, Dr. Fauci.
Depending upon your source, non-verbals make up 90% of the total communication message. We, therefore, as skilled negotiators train ourselves to control our body language and our non-verbals as well as observe the counter party’s nonverbal messages. If we are negotiating with a skilled or seasoned counter party, they too will be managing their total communication cluster (their non verbals and body language) while they are speaking. When the counter party is a team, we have a loophole to exploit.
More often than not, the negotiator NOT doing the talking, the one(s) not in the limelight, or not on the spot, will relax their guard and loosen their communication cluster control. Then, their non monitored body language can communicate their true, deep feelings and at times their covert needs, fears and hidden agendas. This is most definitely the case with Dr. Fauci!
He may parse his words with great care, nonetheless, when another is at the mic, his non-verbals shout out messages impossible for us not to hear.
#3. Finally, and very basically - we like him (some really like him).
Despite the fact that he brings us devastating outlooks on a daily basis, we like him. How come?
1. We like his style. He has a direct and at times blunt style, yet he speaks politely and respectfully. He speaks of hard facts with a calm demeanor.
2. We like that he is not COVID immune. We see him as one of the pack, with masks and elbows. If he doesn’t see himself as one of us, he certainly does not depict himself COVID immune. This makes him real, vulnerable and on the same level as the rest of us.
3. It’s biochemical! In times of crisis people have a fight-or-flight response that drives up testosterone in the brain. Testosterone triggers increased arousal and also has a positive correlation with dopamine and dopamine is linked with feelings of romantic love. So, he is loveable for the very fact that it is amidst crisis and chaos that we have met him.
So what? Take aways? What can we learn about influencing and what does it mean to us as negotiators?
The Power of Process PREDICTABILITY.
Negotiations are seldom one off events but rather serial in nature. That’s why becoming known for playing a fair game, sticking to the rules, offering transparency of protocols and timing and true deadlines prepares the mindsets of the counter party in a positive way. Leaving the table in one negotiation with the Other Party feeling that you were fair during the PROCESS will position the mindset in a constructive way for the next negotiation round. You will have earned Process Predictability and there is belief that you and the PROCESS will be fair.
Watch the Body Language of the person NOT talking.
Keep an eye on the team member who is not doing the talking. Their guard is down. They are not on the spot but can be deeply involved in the dialogue. Watch how their body language responds to the questions posed and the answers offered by their lead negotiator.
This strategy can be especially useful during video conferences or virtual negotiations when the meeting has been recorded. We are able to go back to the recording and analyze the non-verbals of everyone on the call. We can even freeze the frames and take our time to analyze in detail. Watch out! The Other Side has the opportunity to do the same.
Calm can equal Confidence.
We don’t have to scream to be heard. In fact, sometimes when we lower our volume, we ignite the other party as they must use more energy to focus in and listen.
Amidst the chaos and disenchantment,
PREDICTABLE STEADY STYLE
has had major influence and sway muscle.
*In one national poll, seventy-eight per cent of participants approved of Fauci’s performance. Only seven per cent disapproved.