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Industry, Education

February 28, 2019

Negotiating Tip 86: Now’s A Good Time

Delay – a strategy worth considering

Where is it written that we have to negotiate on the other party's schedule?  Certainly, sometimes that is called for,  but not very often. 

Delaying a negotiating encounter may be the best and most effective strategy we've ever used.

So when do we delay negotiating and say "This isn't a good time?"


  • Don't negotiate when you have no power or leverage.  Delay can often provide such power or at least minimize the power of your opponent.
  • Fatigue is a killer of concentration, creativity and performance.  If you're tired and you have the flexibility, put off the bargaining to a better time.
  • If you're under stress and high anxiety, don't negotiate.  Now if the cause of the stress is the negotiations, that's another matter.  In such cases, press on.  The anxiety will tend to sharpen your focus.
  • If you or your opponent is mad, angry or disturbed you can probably figure out that reaching a win-win solution will be difficult.  Let things calm down before proceeding.
  • When either party is preoccupied with something else, productive negotiations take a big hit.  Make sure the deck is cleared of such distractions so both can be attentive, creative and solution oriented.
  • It's not unheard of that one party might be disrespectful or even crude.  Nothing puts them in their place more than walking out and waiting for a better climate. 

This short list certainly identifies times when we need to put off the negotiations if at all possible. 

Experience will identify others, especially if they were somewhat disastrous from your perspective.

Good negotiators are attentive to making sure the time is right as they KEEP Negotiating.

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