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Sales and procurement specialists face challenging problems that require effective negotiation across a range of increasingly complex business scenarios. Negotiating consistently well is crucial but what are some of the reasons for falling short of success? How can we ensure more profitable and longer-term relationships in the future?

Our negotiation programmes examine the main elements that can make negotiations fail and offer the strategy and behaviours needed to adopt best practice - resulting in world class negotiation skills.

Our Complex Negotiation skills programme is an advanced option within our negotiation training that gives you and your team a deeper understanding of the DNA of a successful complex negotiation, and the skills to achieve the best outcomes.

What is Complex Negotiation?

Why Complex Negotiation Skills?


Profitable negotiation outcomes

Profitable negotiation outcomes

Skills and tools to negotiate more profitable deals

Identify leverage

Identify leverage

Ability to identify where and when your organisation has leverage

Common language

Common language

A common language and coherent approach to managing the negotiation

Tactics and strategies

Tactics and strategies

An understanding of where power lies and associated tactics and strategies

Greater confidence

Greater confidence

More confidence when dealing with difficult deals/people

More successful outcomes

More successful outcomes

More successful outcomes in virtual and face to face negotiations


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Really great, well-structured training focused on a real negotiation. Negotiating as a buyer and a seller gave us great insight, particularly in the planning stages of the negotiation. Everything we learned is both important and relevant to my job right now and it will definitely change the approach I take with our suppliers.

Senior Sourcing Team, GE Renewable Energy
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Complex Negotiation Skills helps your team solve these common challenges;


Common negotiation language

We’ve no common negotiation process, language or tools

The processes, skills and tools we teach can be shared with colleagues and present a common front to the other party

How to preparare and plan a negotiation

The other party is better organised and divides and conquers our negotiation team

Preparation and planning processes are a key part of the training, including setting best, target and worst trading limits

Optimal negotiating position

The focus on price means our organisation ends up conceding and being pushed towards a worse deal

The programme focuses on preparing an optimal negotiating position and the concepts of levers and bargaining and how to apply them

Skills for persuasion

Our negotiators appear powerless, particularly in negotiations with large sophisticated organisations

Participants will learn skills for persuasion, managing the power balance and bargaining

How to maintain a positive negotiation climate

The other party uses aggression and we’re usually involved in a conflict, with negative consequences for the deal and the relationship

By the end of the programme, participants will have strategies for maintaining a positive climate, dealing with ‘dirty tricks’ and overcoming stagnation or deadlock

Using Huthwaite negotiation tools

We keep signing deals that are costly, where margins are squeezed and the relationship is damaged

Using Huthwaite tools, participants will have a framework for analysing the context of the negotiation and preparing an optimal negotiating position

 Using preparation and planning tools prior to a negotiation

Getting a mandate internally is almost as difficult as dealing with the other party

Using the preparation and planning tools will provide clarity to the internal stakeholders setting mandates

Start your negotiation skills journey today

With all the training and tools you’ll need and a support team excited to help you start your negotiation skills journey today

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How we deliver negotiation training courses


Virtual classroom

A flexible, robust virtual classroom experience that eliminates the need for travel and has all the key benefits of a physical classroom environment.

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Physical classroom

An engaging, personal classroom experience that encourages deep focus, with face-to-face, facilitator-led training.

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Why do our negotiations programmes work - what is the nature of the research behind them?

Huthwaite International is founded on a single question: what do people do when they are being successful that they don't do when they are not successful? We have spent the last five decades answering that, by observing and analysing negotiations and distilling the successful behaviours and building learning journeys around them. The simple truth is, if we haven’t researched it, and we don’t know for sure that it works, then we don’t use it. If you choose to work with us, you can be assured that everything we teach is researched, tried and tested in the field.

Huthwaite has always done a lot of work around negotiation tactics and behaviours. What makes our research unique, is that it's field research. It's negotiation in action.  That is quite rare, which makes our skills models and your learning unique. Most companies in our sector provide process and tools but no-one else comes close to having the proven and robust verbal behaviour models we share with our clients. This is why some of our clients have worked with us for decades and 30% of our clients work with us for more than 5 years.

What is the difference between Complex and Essential Negotiations training?

Our Essential Negotiation Skills training is suitable for regular or routine negotiation scenarios, where improved skills can make a big difference to 'everyday' negotiation outcomes. It’s great for people – whether they come from sales, procurement or any other part of an organisation – who regularly negotiate around a relatively small range of issues (usually not more than six), who do so quite frequently and often deal with another party in the form of a one-to-one conversation.

The topics of their negotiation are often similar from one day to the next which means that they will have the autonomy or mandate to agree terms without referral back inside their organisation for additional complex scenario planning (we offer a different programme for those more complex negotiations).

Confidence is gained through the use of verbal behavioural tools and skills to avoid concessions, reach swift conclusions and sustain good relationships with customers and/or suppliers.

If you often face more complicated negotiating challenges where the issues are multi-faceted and high risk, our Complex Negotiation Skills training will ensure you hone your skills and gain insights into the most important factors in your negotiations. You will understand what is really important in your negotiation and how to secure the best outcome through direct experience of strategy, tactics, preparation, planning and a unique behavioural success model. The programme will equip you with the skills to avoid simple concessions, conclude sustainable deals, surrender less margin in a sale, save money in a strategic purchase and have a framework for future negotiations. Throughout the programme you will receive constructive and objective feedback on your performance compared with the Skill Model and create an action plan for continued development after the event.

What is Verbal Behaviour Analysis or VBA?

In both our Complex and our Essential Negotiation Skills programmes, we use Verbal Behaviour Analysis or VBA for short.  VBA is the means by which we analyse and measure verbal communication – the things that people say to each other in a given situation. It is the basis for all our methodologies and for providing reliable feedback as the basis for viable skill development.

We have used VBA to identify what successful sellers and negotiators do, and have created best practice skills models so that everyone can emulate the skills that lead to success.  We also implement VBA within each learning session to analyse the current skill levels of participants and identify areas that can be practiced during our programmes.

Why Huthwaite International?


Our sales, negotiation and communication methodologies are the most researched and validated in the world.

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Behavioural expertise

Backed by ongoing scientific research, adapting to changing customer behaviour.

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International flexibility

Truly international, teaching Negotiation Skills to leading organisations across the globe.

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Develop your negotiation skills training plan

Start transforming your negotiation performance. Book a consultation to develop your personalised training plan today.

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