Stuart Gentle Publisher at Onrec

Negotiation – The missing link?

HR professionals negotiate and attempt to gain influence all day, every day

HR professionals negotiate and attempt to gain influence all day, every day. From recruiting new hires to ensuring that people work well together, an HR specialist needs to understand and balance the perspective of the company with the perspectives of employees. With the increasing pressure on companies to be cognisant of work life balance and to be social and environmental stewards, not to mention the need to motivate, reward, retain and train the best talent, this pressure can only increase.

Now more than ever, the responsibility of ensuring that organisation is match fit to handle the inevitable day-to-day conflicts with customers, suppliers, and other parts of the business necessitates strong negotiation skills for any successful HR leader.

Stephen White, Managing Director and co-founder of Scotwork, consulting and coaching firm developing negotiation skills for business professionals since 1975, believes that the missing link in many of today’s organisations is the recognition of both the value of negotiation as a skill, and critically how negotiation is handled.

“In traditional businesses the command and control mentality would prevail” says Stephen, “but that simply will not wash any more, or at least it creates less than optimal results for both parties. Effective negotiation can create links between the needs of the individual and that of the organisation to find means of resolving conflict that recognise the priorities the two sides have. The most collaborative approach a business can take is to use what we call the Judo principle. Can we give them what they want but on terms that work for the business? This requires some fundamental skills such as preparation, value creation and clarity of understanding. Key competencies that good negotiators possess”

This topic will be further discussed by Stephen White, Managing Director and co-founder of Scotwork during his presentation at the HR Directors Business Summit in Birmingham early next year. Over 1,500 senior executives will gather together to network and benchmark strategies. Further information can be found here: