The Surprising ‘Third Party Effect’
How can third parties be managed? Impossible, you might say?
Even Non-Interested Third Party Actions Can Have A Major Impact
In the private sector, working with an ENS client on a significant commercial negotiation, 19 third parties had to be dealt with separately. These included two levels of government with five government departments, three unions and one union umbrella association, two employer groups, five separate politicians and their advisers, and three special interest groups.
In a public arena, negotiations with government are fraught with third party involvement. Some third parties (including the media) have an obvious interest. Others may be unexpected.
How can so many third parties be managed? Impossible, you might say? Well at least one way is to contain their activities within a time frame where their effect will be minimised.
Certainly in commercial negotiations all the potential ‘third parties’ are delineated, how their activities might effect the negotiation outcome is carefully considered.
Tips On Managing ‘Third Parties’
When advising clients on their negotiation strategies, and in our negotiation and influencing training, ENS recommends that negotiators carefully review the potential impact of third party action. This requires that you:
- Recognise three levels of counter party influence: the key players, those whom they represent, and the ‘third parties’
- As part of preparation for negotiation, determine how to manage ‘third party’ actions before they occur
- Where possible, plan the ‘best’ time frame for the third party action to occur as you move towards commencing the formal negotiation
- Alternatively, decide what counter action you might take that will mask the ‘third party’ effect
To discuss this article in more depth and explore developing your negotiation capabilities, please contact us via email or call +612 9299 9688.