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Most people in business probably spend more time negotiating than they realise, so understanding the fundamentals of negotiation and building some key skills is important. Some of the negotiations may take place as set piece, scheduled or formal meetings. Others might happen unexpectedly. How often do you get caught unaware by a conversation that turns into a negotiation you haven’t prepared for? And even if you know you are facing a scheduled negotiation, do you know how to plan to get what you want?

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.

What is Essential Negotiation Skills?

Why Essential Negotiation Skills?


Develop your negotiation skills

Develop your negotiation skills

Develop the skills and tools to negotiate more profitable deals

Identify how you can improve margin

Identify how you can improve margin

Ability to identify how and where you can improve margin

Sustain good relationships

Sustain good relationships

Ability to sustain good relationships with customers and/or suppliers

Develop a common language

Develop a common language

A common language and coherent approach to managing the negotiation

Sharpen your skills in negotiation

Sharpen your skills in negotiation

Sharper skills and more confidence when dealing with difficult deals/people

Achieve more successful outcomes

Achieve more successful outcomes

More successful outcomes in both virtual and face to face negotiations.

Essential Negotiation Skills helps you solve these common negotiation challenges;


surprise negotiation

We sometimes get caught unaware by a conversation that turns into a negotiation we haven’t prepared for

Learn strategies and tactics for use when facing a surprise negotiation

Develop an effective proces

Even when we know we are facing a scheduled negotiation, we don’t really know how to plan to get what we want

Learn an effective process for robust and reliable preparation and planning

Build negotiation confidence

A lot of the everyday business interactions we have with clients, suppliers or colleagues seem to leave us with the worse end of the deal

Learning new skills gives participants the confidence to conduct the negotiation and develop mutually agreeable outcomes

Learn new verbal skills

When we get face to face with the other party, we don’t really know what we should be saying, and how we should be saying it.

Come away with the ability to differentiate negotiating to other commercial activities with different skill sets such as selling.

Develop negotiating power

Somehow, we always seem to be the less powerful one when we sit down to negotiate anything. Our negotiations aren’t usually all that complex, but plenty can still go wrong

Come away with an understanding of how to assess and adjust the power balance and produce a win for both sides

Create a common language

We’ve no common negotiation process, language or tools

The common language, skills and tools given will quickly pervade your organisation with the clarity and precision needed for negotiation success

Develop your negotiation skills training plan

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

Book your free consultation

How we deliver Essential Negotiation Skills


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.


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.

Book your free consultation