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Trial Balloon

 

Disciplines > Negotiation > Negotiation tactics > Trial Balloon

Description | Example | Discussion | See also

 

Description

Suggest a final solution and see if the other side bites. Float out an idea and see if they run with it or away from it. Explore possibilities that will lead to closure.

For example:

  • Ask 'what if?' and wait for 'how?'
  • Use 'If I...will you...'
  • Use 'Let's...' and see if they agree.
  • Say 'Are you ready to agree now?'

Example

How about going to the restaurant tonight?

If we can agree on the final numbers, are you ready to sign today?

Right. We've agreed on the date and price. Is that it?

Discussion

It is easy to assume that the other person will not accept an idea or is not ready for closure. The fear of their refusal can thus prevent you from exploring or trying something out.

All you need to do to use a trial balloon is to add some form of qualifier or otherwise ask questions that will lead them to consider moving forward with you.

See also

Assumption principle

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