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Negotiating with Gen Y

We know that one of the master techniques in negotiating is to understand who you are negotiating with. In the case of younger adults – those born between 1980 and early 2000’s known as Generation Y – there are some shared general characteristics that can help you understand their negotiation style. Utilizing these characteristics may in turn help smooth the negotiation to a successful outcome for all parties.

Gen Y are the children of the Baby Boomers. They will make up almost as formidable a demographic force as their Boomer parents. By and large, these adults were raised with positive feedback, lots of choices, and reward for accomplishments. They are also technology savvy and accustomed to on-demand interaction. Creating these circumstances in your negotiation expertise should help to keep the negotiation process moving forward.

Positive Feedback
Gen Y thrives on positive feedback and bristles more than usual at negative feedback. Find reasons to applaud their efforts of researching on the internet or addressing property repairs in a timely manner.

Lots of Choices
The more choices you can offer Gen Y, the better participation you should receive. If there is a particular negotiation point that is important to you, offer a choice for how to reach that outcome. For example, “We can either lower the price or raise the amount of repairs that we offer. Which seems better to you?”

Reward for Accomplishments
If there is something that the Gen Y feel strongly about, offer that as a trade-off or reward for something equally valuable to the other party. “I know that you want the appliances included. How about if we let them ____________.”

On-Demand Interaction
As much as reasonable, be available by text, email, and phone. Promptly return any missed texts or calls, and check email several times each day. Gen Y wants to collaborate as quickly as possible.

With these negotiation techniques in play, Negotiating with Gen Y should move quickly forward to a win-win conclusion.