I am pleased to announce that I have had my very first vitriolic and infantile post on linkedIn from a supposed professional in the area of negotiation. This person does not know me and, as far as I know, has never had any contact with me.
My initial reaction to his post was anger, followed by a desire to respond in kind and my final reaction was pity – for him! as such behaviour is not appropriate or expected on a professional network.
Since his post, the number of views of my post have shot up so his negative comments have had a positive result for me and has produced potential work for me.
More importantly, it reminded me of some of the key elements that I teach to my trainees and apply in every negotiation:
- This person is probably a bully and is used to throwing their power around and revels in the power that he thinks he has. However, Bullies forget that power always disappears. Don’t be bullied!
- He appears to believe that he is the source of all knowledge and he must be recognized as such.
- Never respond in anger – it will always come back and bite you!
- Laugh at it. Taking it seriously can spoil your day (why let an unknown person have the power to do that to you?)
- Think three times before responding: You usually do not know why the person is behaving in that way: personal, health or business problems, or just a bad-hair day.
- Never respond by reflecting their language, attitude, or style of communication. Be in complete control of yourself and not under their control.
- Do not answer any of the points they raise. Once you start playing their game you have lost. The have set the rules and you have agreed to “play” by their rules.
- Remember that you have probably signed NDAs that prohibit you from even discussing practical cases where you have been involved.
- “It takes two to tango!” If you don’t fight with this person, they will move on to an easier target who will fight with them.
So, when / If you find yourself in a situation like this, I hope this post will help you.
All constructive feedback will be appreciated. All negative feedback will be treated as indicated above.
(c) Ian Brownlee, Madrid, 30th January, 2018