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97 Negotiation Interview Questions

        posted by , February 06, 2013

How much do you pay for your broccoli?

In many cultures it's common to negotiate for everyday supplies such as fruits and vegetables. In every culture, negotiation is a fundamental economic activity.

You probably negotiate on a daily basis, in both your career and personal life. You negotiate purchases, contracts, jobs, ideas and initiatives.

Negotiation is a primary skill for executive managers, managers, purchasing and sales related professions. The following interview questions are designed to cover the wide range of skills associated with negotiating.

1. Are you a good negotiator?

2. In your current role, how often do you negotiate?

3. What's the most complex negotiation you've handled?

4. What negotiation successes are you most proud of?

5. Can you tell me about a time you failed to reach an agreement in negotiations?

6. What's your definition of negotiation success?


Negotiation Planning


7. How do you plan for negotiations?

8. Is it important to research before walking into negotiations? Why / why not?

9. Do you identify goals & objectives before negotiations? If so, can you give me some examples?


Influencing To Negotiate

10. What is your style of negotiating?

11. Why are influencing skills key to negotiations?

12. Are you good at public speaking?

13. What public speaking accomplishment are you most proud of?

14. Can you give me an example of an effective elevator pitch that you've used?

15. How do you ensure that your proposals are compelling?

16. Can you give me an example of a win-win proposal?

17. Have you resolved a conflict? Can you give me an example?

18. How do you establish rapport & trust? Why is this important?

19. How do you establish common ground in negotiations? Can you give me an example of a time you established common ground?

20. What strategies have you used to influence the other side in negotiations?

21. Have you worked in negotiation teams? If so, how did you collaborate?

22. Can you give me an example of win-win thinking?

23. Why is win-win thinking important?

24. What techniques have you used to network?

25. Is a negotiation a debate? Why / why not?

26. Why do logical arguments sometimes fail to influence?

27. Why is it important to understand the other side's needs in negotiations?

28. How do you collect information in negotiations?

29. Are you familiar with BATNA? Why is it useful in negotiations?

30. What is social proof? Why is it important?

31. You're in negotiations and the other side uses unethical tactics such as intimidation. How do you handle the situation?

32. You're in negotiations and the other side gives you inconsistent information that leads you to believe they're lying. Do you point this out to them?

33. Why are cross cultural negotiations challenging?

34. What does it mean to demonstrate good faith in negotiations? Why is it helpful?

35. What is the difference between mediation and arbitration?

36. If you were mentoring a junior employee in negotiations, what advice would you give them?

37. Do leaders make better negotiators? Why / why not?

38. How do you manage time in negotiations?


Emotional Intelligence

39. What are your hot buttons (things that trigger your emotions)?

40. How do you control your emotions in stressful negotiations?

41. Are you good at reading people?

42. Can you tell me about a time someone criticized your work? How did you react?

43. Have you negotiated with difficult people? Can you give me an example?

44. Can you tell me about a time you used humor to defuse a difficult situation?

45. Have you deliberately triggered people's emotions in negotiations? Why?

46. Is it important to prevent the other side in negotiations from losing face (being embarrassed)?

47. Does an optimistic approach improve negotiation results? Why / why not?

48. Why is endurance & persistence important in negotiations?


Communication

49. Why does strong eye contact matter?

50. Can you give me an example of a time you used silence as communication technique?

51. How do you soften bad news?

52. How do you deliver criticism in negotiations?

53. How do you simplify complex ideas in a proposal?

54. How do you show the other side in negotiations that you're listening to them?

55. Is it possible to say no with body language?

56. Can you tell me about a time you made a bad first impression?

57. What are the barriers to effective communication?


Hard Bargaining

58. Are you a hard bargainer?

59. What is Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt? How is it used as a negotiation strategy? Is it ethical?

60. How can you tell if the other side is bluffing in negotiations?

61. Are you familiar with Defense in Depth?

62. What is Divide and Conquer?

63. How do you buy time in negotiations?

64. What are some common negotiating strategies that you've seen used?


Diplomacy & Politics

65. When is a diplomatic approach to negotiations useful?

66. What are some common diplomacy strategies?

67. What is your biggest challenge in dealing with office politics?

68. Why is it important to use positive language in negotiations?

69. How do you avoid escalations?

70. What political strategies have you used in negotiations?

71. What is bad cop / good cop? Have you used this strategy?

72. How do objective criteria help to close agreements?

73. How do you help the other side in negotiations to feel that they have won?

74. Why is diplomatic speech helpful?

75. If you notice the other side is bluffing, do you call their bluff?

76. If you notice the other side is using a strategy such as divide and conquer, do you point it out?

77. How does psychology impact politics? Can you give me some examples?


Selling

78. Can you give me an example of a selling strategy that you've successfully used to close a deal?

79. What makes a sales proposal successful?

80. Can you tell me about the most difficult sale you've made?

81. What information helps you to make a sale?

82. What is nibbling? Why does it work?

83. When is a price too low?

84. What strategies have you seen customers use to get lower prices?

85. Can deliver a pitch right now for a simple product such as a toothbrush?

86. How do you answer customer questions when you don't know the answer?

87. How high do you set your initial price? Why?

88. Have you ever sold something at a low price just to establish a relationship? Is this technique effective?

89. What are the biggest obstacles to closing a deal?


Decision Making

90. What was the hardest professional decision you've had to make? How did you make it?

91. What's the difference between strategy and tactics? Which is more powerful?

92. Why do people make bad decisions?

93. What steps do you take when you have an important decision to make?

94. Is it a bad idea to make quick decisions? Why / why not?

95. How do you incorporate feedback from your team in your decisions?

96. What advice would you give to someone to help them make better decisions?

97. What percentage of your decisions turn out to be wrong?

This post is part of the ongoing series of articles called how to win your next job


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