Negotiation is an important skill for many situations. Businesses need to understand negotiation to work with their partners and their competitors. Teachers need to learn how to negotiate with their students to get good grades, and students must negotiate to stay out of trouble. Use simple negotiation skill games to improve your group’s negotiation skills in no time.
Cross That Line
Cross That Line works great in any environment, including high school and even business meetings. Divide your group up into two teams. Each team picks a team leader. Place the teams on opposite sides of the room and run a piece of rope down the middle of the room. Players cannot move to the other team’s side. The leaders stand across from each other during this game. Each team tries to negotiate with the leader of the other team to make him move to their side. They can debate, cajole and even bribe the leader into changing sides. All bribes must be honored by the team for them to successfully win the game. The other team tries to negotiate with the other captain, making this game a frantic and an exciting debate game.
Tennis is a great metaphor for the art of negotiation. Use this metaphor to help improve your group’s negotiation skills. Set your team across from each other at a table. Select a negotiation topic, such as who is going to pay for the sodas after the meeting. Randomly choose a team to start. The first team member makes an offer, such as “we’ll pay for 60 percent of the sodas, as long as we get to take half of the bottles in for a refund.” The player directly across from him on the other team makes a counter proposal to the player next to the “serving” player as quickly as possible. This game must be done fast. This player then makes another proposal to the player across from him. Continue this order until the very end, when the proposals cycle through again. It continues cycling until one team accepts the proposal.
The auction game can give your group a true understanding of the importance of negotiation. Play this game only in a workplace with people who can afford to lose a little money. Everyone puts at least $1 in the game pot. After this has finished, players bid on how much they are going to pay to buy the pot. The twist to this game is that the highest bidder and the second highest bidder pay the final bid amounts. However, only the highest bidder wins the money. This game drives players to negotiate prices with people who are willing to spend money and either split the pot or get a percentage. Naturally, the second highest bidder will want to get an equal amount of money, but this is entirely up to the highest bidder. Players learn the importance of negotiation in a very short time.