As a follow-up to last week’s blog about preferred negotiation styles in which I identified three broad categories of styles (competitors, accommodators and conflict avoiders) and shared a list of competitor characteristics, here are my Top Ten Characteristics of Accommodators:
1. Highly value good relationships
2. Love to be liked and are often quite likeable
3. Attitude reflects concern, compassion and understanding
4. Fairly accurately show nonjudgmental understanding of others’ concerns
5. Very effective listening skills
6. Tend to be viewed as trustworthy, due in part to their superior listening skills
7. Dislike open conflict, especially when it might harm the relationship
8. Extended conflicts make them uncomfortable, and they will try to smooth them over
9. Typical relationships lack open conflict
10. Adept at creating stress-free atmospheres
Accommodators also can allow relationship concerns to overshadow substantive issues. A very high profile accommodator is former President Bill Clinton.
Are you more of an accommodator than a competitor? If so, keep this in mind when you negotiate and recognize that sometimes you will be better served by taking a different approach. For example, adjust your negotiation preparation and approach if your counterpart is an aggressive competitor.