B2B Street Fighting Blog

what are consequences of no agreement?

Posted by Marie Dudek Brown on Fri, Mar 22, 2013 @ 01:48 PM

what are consequences of no agreementYou may never have used the expression Consequences of No Agreement, but chances are that you've thought about them.  After all, you know that something is going to happen if you don't make a deal.  As the seller, your Consequences of No Agreement - your alternative to making a deal - is most likely going to be losing the sale.  Your customer generally has three possible alternatives to reaching agreement with you.  He or she can:

  1. go to a competitor
  2. build the solution himself or herself
  3. do nothing

It's only when negotiators obtain something that's at least marginally better than their alternative that they prefer agreement to impasse.

Understanding the Consequences of No Agreement, both for yourself and your customer, is easily the most important aspect of constructing a blueprint of a negotiation.  The reason is that, in any negotiation, the other side always sees your offer as a gain or loss based on their perception of the consequences of not reaching agreement with you.  Simply put, if the other side believes that making a deal with you will be to their benefit, they will do it.  But if they believe that they'll be better off not making a deal with you, regardless of the alternatives, you're going to lose the sale.

Note that I said the other side makes a decision based on its perception of the consequences.  The truth is that in any given negotiation, more often than not, one or both sides haven't taken the time to analyze their true Consequences of No Agreement, or they have, but have misdiagnosed them.  In either case, even if one or the other side is putting a great offer on the table, chances are the two sides won't reach agreement if the consequences are misdiagnosed or misunderstood. That's one of the reasons it's so important to answer this question first - "What are the consequences if we do not reach agreement?" - by accurately determining those consequences.  Making that determination is the first step in blueprinting a negotiation.  Then, diplomatically educate those on the other side about their true Consequences of No Agreement. 


Tags: negotiation skills for sales

Think! named to Inc. list of
America's fastest growing private companies

Think! named to Inc. 500|5000

about this blog

The B2B Street Fighting blog brings you the latest on what's happening in the real world of business negotiation.

Contact Think!

complete below to get NEW posts
delivered to you

our must-read books on business negotiation

Whether you are in sales or procurement, we have the books you need to read.

For sales professionals:

B2B Street Fighting

For procurement professionals:

negotiation blueprinting for buyers