miércoles, febrero 25, 2009

Business "in inglish..."

Todavía les debo la escribida sobre México, pero el otro día tuve que hacer un ensayo para el curso de negociación e hice un ejercicio que me pareció bastante entrenenido. Es en inglés. Y seguro tiene errores por ahí, pero bueno, ahí va:

Recognizing your Negotiation Potential

Since I started the course of Negotiation I was so excited for learning about this topic, and mostly when I realized (as I’ve already intuited) that every day we make several negotiations in different levels and areas of our life.
And when I say that I was excited for learn about the subject is just because I actually think that I’m one of the worst deals-makers ever. Beginning with my mom, many people tells me that I always give too much and that I receive much less that I give. And I think that’s because of my temperament.
Most of the times I’m happy with the type of negotiations I make, but for some reason people says that the way I’ve acted is so “condescending”, or in some way the other side is taking advantage of me.
So, hearing what the professor has to say in class and reading the books about Negotiation skills I decided to figure out what I’m doing well and what I’m doing bad in terms of negotiation, trying to realize if I have any potential to be a good negotiator or if I’m a lost case...

For that purpose I designed and answered a little self-test with some main questions that helps me to understand better my way of negotiate anything. Let’s see which of the questions I've marked with a circle…

1. Do you have the skill to establish a friendship relation with unknown people?
a) Yes, absolutely.
b) Yes, but it’s is not my usual
c) No, I usually don’t get involved in a friendship level.
For this question I will say a). This is the way I usually do and also the bibliography tells us that it is an important rule for every negotiation. People that think in short term and don’t make a connection with the other party, foreseeing a long term relation, will begin any negotiation in a disadvantage way and will loose many good opportunities in the future. Establish a good relationship is always desirable. So, let’s say I have one point.

2. Do you loose your patience very easily during a normal conversation?
a) Yes, I most of the times.
b) No so often.
c) No, I have a Franciscan patience.
For the question 2 I will answer c). I always knew that it will be useful for something. I rarely get stressed about being waiting for something, and in any conversation even if TOS doesn’t have the same point of view I will not get angry or will start yelling imposing my position. As the Negotiating in the Age of integrity says, although it can be a tactic, it is not a good idea to get delivered by emotions, anger, and resentment, trying to impose by launching fire and attacking the other side. Here we go, one more point.

3. if you go to visit your in-laws and they offer you a dinner with a kind of meat that you have never seen before in your life you:
a) Don’t make any comment about it, and eat it even if you don’t like it at all.
b) Definitely refuse to eat something that is not in your actual diet.
c) Politely ask what is it and if you think it will be painful you pretend a suddenly allergy attack to avoid the dish.
I would like to tell this is the a) for me but I have to recognize that I probably will no eat something that I don’t know what is. So I will ask politely what’s the recipe and maybe not pretend I’m allergic but trying the best way for not to eat all without bothering my host. This point called rapport is very important in order to establish a relation and create empathy with the other side. It includes, dress code, manners, common tastes, interest talking, etc. and it is useful with your in-laws as well as in business. Half point.

4. If some one gets very angry with you and starts yelling, you:
a) Start trembling and almost crying of fear.
b) Start yelling at the double of volume.
c) Stay calm, waiting for the other side to get down to The Earth.
Oh no, my answer is a) so, now I have to put me a zero. Effectively when someone gets angry I usually gets very nervous and it’s difficult to me to continue thinking. Any situation. And as one of the books says in the common mistakes of negotiation is being intimidated by emotional outburst, and to underestimate your own power. I have to learn that some of those outbursts are just a ploy to demonstrate some power, that is not necessarily true. I have to be calm thou.

5. You claim always the true, only the true and nothing more than the true?
a) Yes I’m very transparent.
b) I keep my secrets.
c) I’m a complete liar.
a) Oops, another zero. That’s because I’m falling in another mistake called “being too predictable”. I realize that during any negotiation, it’s too difficult for me to hide some facts as well as say any lie. The correct answer for his question will be b) you have to be trustful enough to gain TOS confidence, but you have to keep some data in order to be more interesting.

6. When you’re talking to some one you usually giver more importance to:
a) What they’re saying.
b) The way they’re saying it.
c) No one of the above.
I will say b) And I know it must be a). One important thing in negotiation is focus in the problem not in the position. Some times we trend to take things very personal and what really matters is get a solution to the problem. Positions don’t need any solution. Half point.

7. When you see something you’d like to buy, you always first see:
a) The price
b) The characteristics, color, shape, design, etc.
c) The fabricator / country of precedence.
And my answer is b). Any answer different than a) will be correct. Why? Because you don’t have to focus in the price since the beginning. Getting only to the “main point” without construct the proper conditions to talk first is not healthy for any relationship: of friendship, familiar, romantic or business. One point.

8. Which of these concepts are most attractive to you.
a) Time is money.
b) There’s more time than life.
c) Time is relative.
I would like to say c) and… yes! One more point for me. In negotiation, specially when it is about international negotiation, time is very important and have different meanings for any culture. For occidental people, mostly for Europeans and Americans the beginning of a meeting must be sharp and the time of lasting for a negotiation will be as quick as possible. For most of Latin American countries the meeting time is more relaxed and it is not so important to be sharp. For most oriental countries the period to get into an agreement trends to be longer and gives a lot of importance to take the time to know each other. Time also gives a psychological pressure and can be used to take an advantage in the negotiation process.

9. In any negotiation, you go well prepared always knowing your bottom line?
a) Yes.
b) No.
c) Sometimes.
Answer b) oh, oh… I realized that’s one of my current mistakes. Some times because of the time and some times because there are decisions do you think you can make it “on the go”. Being prepared, knowing the other side, their expectations and being clear on what are the minimum terms you can accept are among the most important things you have to know in order to get to good negotiations.

10. According to your point of view, life is:
a) White. Everything is good and there are not bad people.
b) Black. Serious and formal. That’s adult’s world.
c) Full of color. With many tones and changing.
My answer off course is c) How boring it will be life in one and only tint. It’s not only good things. It’s not only serious things. And that’s how negotiating would be: as in a life full of color, a children world.
In one of the books they said that children are excellent negotiators: they are persistent. They don’t know the meaning of the word “no”. They are never embarrassed. They often read us better that we read them… I will add: children love to play. So as a child we have to see negotiations like a game, and play it in the funniest way we can.

So, saying that, let’s count: 1, 2, 3… 6 points of 10. I know I can do it better. I know I can improve. But also I wanted to be realistic with myself and really recognize what are my fails to work on them. After all, I can say that I have some potential, or at least I have the adequate attitude to become a good negotiator in the future, in the life.

viernes, febrero 13, 2009

Pánico cardioescénico...

Lo sé, lo sé... tenía que escribir acerca de qué es salir en México. Pero bueno, como ya saben, en mis posts los asuntos del corazón tienen prioridad, así que aquí va este...
Una tontera = Malinterpretación = ella rensentida = el molesto = ella triste = ¿cómo se arregla?

Yo sé que no tengo derecho a reclamar. Ellos te sustraen ese "derecho", no poniéndole títulos a lo que podría ser una relación. Para curarse en salud de algo que les da temor. Algo que les hace sonar sus alarmas y poner barreras. Y se niegan a recaer en experiencias pasadas, de antiguas relaciones en las que todo empezaba con un reclamo y terminaba con un pleito...
Aunque yo no soy así, de armar pleitos, prefiero dialogar y sí, a veces reclamar. Pero a ver: ¿necesitaríamos reclamar si de verdad nos tomaran en cuenta? Pues no. Menos pelearnos. 
Creo que mi "reclamo" (que era más una observación irónica, diría yo) almacenaba no una, sino varias ocasiones en las que me he sentido rechazada, hecha a un lado, ignorada, no tomada en cuenta, no querida...
Yo ya sabía que no tenía por qué reclamar. Ya lo sabía, solo que se me olvidó por un instante. ¿Un instante de "celos" tal vez?. Un instante de "te sigo queriendo y vos ni te acordás de mí" de "por qué no me das pelota". Un instante de "mirame, aquí estoy, todavía siento lo mismo por vos"... 
Y a veces nos preguntamos : ¿tan malo fue lo que dije? ¿qué hice mal? Es una tontera entre otras mil cosas buenas...  y nos parece que solo están esperando una excusa para enojarse. No entendemos cómo se van desvaneciendo miles de momentos hermosos, cómo se pueden olvidar de todas las cosas bonitas, por un segundo de tensión, estrés y miedo... Miedo a querer. 
Pero no podemos obligar a nadie a que nos quiera. Y definitivamente sabemos cuándo es mejor "no estorbar". Ya eso lo sabía y ya me había querido hacer a un lado. ¡Ay, pero cómo cuesta!
Yo no me siento en posición de reclamar nada -me decís-  pero no entiendo como vos sí... 
Pues ¡me estás reclamando que te reclamo! Y te molestás. Y te ofuscás. Eso me da una pequeña noción de que todavía sentís algo por mí... de que todavía tenés ese mismo miedo, temor o pánico del principio.  
El solo hecho de imaginarnos como pareja te asusta. Por lo menos sos capaz de reconocerlo, aunque no muy conscientemente. Y te enoja porque "reclamo" sin ningún derecho. Y te da chicha que lo haga. Y te enoja que todavía te pueda crear esos sentimientos. Y te ofusca darte cuenta que estás pensando así. Te enoja pensar en mí cuando no quisieras. Y te enoja verte hablando de este tema conmigo. Y me alegra, la verdad. Me alegro por vos. Me alegro por mí.

miércoles, febrero 04, 2009

No estaba muerta... Andaba en Acapulco!

La vista desde la ventana ©Stephen Voehl 

Pues sí, aproveché que había puente y que me invitaron, para darme una escapadita (y una bronceadita que ya me hacía falta). Con compu en la maleta, porque teníamos tarea que hacer, me fui para Acapulco a disfrutar de un fin de semana largo con mis compas, primos, amigos y demás familiares.
Y bueno entre el burumbún de salir el viernes, con el montón de tráfico que había y luego que no teníamos conexión a Internet allá y la salidera a cuanto "antro" hubiera, no pude felicitar a Billy en su cumpleaños... 
No les ha pasado que están desde una o dos semanas antes diciéndose a sí mismos: "tal día cumple Fulanito, no se me vaya a olvidar", "Sutanita, acordate que el sábado cumple Fulanito, hay que llamarlo..." y así por el estilo. Y llegado el día, por A o por B, ni llamás, ni mensajito y te das cuenta hasta al día siguiente o dos o tres días después, que no le dijiste nada...
O peor aún, te encontrás a la persona frente a frente y no le decís ni pío...  a menos de que tenga fiesta planeada y te invite, o todavía peor... te quedaste sin ir a la fiesta porque como no le dijiste nada, no te invitó!
En fin, que eso me pasó este fin de semana, por andar viendo las hermosas vistas acapulquenses (no sé si se dice así) y dejé al pobre Billy solo, triste y abandonado en California. Tampoco llevaba mi celular de allá como para mandarle un mensajito. Como dicen acá: "¡qué oso!" Y ahora a ver como arreglo la torta :oS
Del paseo, paseo, esperen la segunda parte... con mi crónica y mis refelxiones acerca de lo que es "salir" en México.