Greg Williams

By Greg Williams

“Reflection – Negotiation – What Is The Expiration On A Promise” – Negotiation Insight

“Reflection – Negotiation – What Is The Expiration On A Promise” – Negotiation Insight 150 150 Greg Williams, MN, CSP

 

“All promises have expiration dates. Don’t let yours expire without reaping its rewards.” – Greg Williams, The Master Negotiator & Body Language Expert (Click here to Tweet)

 

 

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“Reflection – Negotiation – What Is The Expiration On A Promise”

 

… They needed to increase their perception of power. So, they sought an ally to enhance that perception. They made a promise to support that ally’s efforts from that point into the future.

But when a new leader gained power, he abandoned his ally. The ally, upon reflection, realized they were pawns in their former partner’s game. They’d been betrayed and sold out because they no longer had the value they once possessed. Within their ranks, they asked the question, what is the expiration on a promise?

That question is one that you should ponder about every situation. Things constantly change. And thus, parameters formed in one alliance can alter a promise when people form other partnerships. So, if you feel the ground shifting, take note of where it’s flowing. That noted change will signal the possible need to develop new alliances. A promise will only last as long as it serves a purpose. To assess when it may begin to lose its commitment, consider the following.

 

Where you were

Knowing the environment a promise was made in, and the surrounding circumstances that led to its creation will give you a starting point from which to monitor its party’s commitment. Consider who the players were that entered into the alignment that made the promise. And, consider their source of power moving into the future. Making that assessment can serve as a bell-weather that indicates when you should consider forming new alliances. Being blind to such occurrences can leave you in a darkness that’s fraught with danger.

 

Your journey

As you reflect on the dilemma of lost trust, due to broken promises, think of the path that you and your allies have traveled. Consider what might have led or is leading to a separation of support you’ve provided for each other. Partnerships don’t dissolve overnight. There are always pending signs of potential danger. Look for them and heed warning signs on your path. Think about the variables that transpired that you possibly ignored due to circumstances that you didn’t want to consider or those that you intentionally chose to ignore. The purpose of that is to assess the mindset that you and your ally had as you traveled to the place that you now find the relationship. Ask yourself, what can I do now to increase my perceived value? Who might I align with to improve my position? And where might that alignment lead? You need firm footing to escape a slippery slope. Connecting with those that can extend support might be the support required to do just that.

 

Where you are

Now, you’re in a very precarious situation. Your most reliable ally has deserted you. And, you’re left surrounded by your enemies. What do you do? To survive, you must create new alliances. And you have to consider the trust factor. And you must ask, how long might a promise they make last? The answer that echoes back is, now is not the time to worry about that. You’re in survival mode.

If you want to survive, you must do whatever is required to sustain yourself. That may even include making alliances with the devil. Meaning, you may have to stretch very far outside of your comfort zone. But if survival is meaningful to you, you’ll do what it takes to prevent you from being taken by what you do.

 

Reflection

When you find yourself in a less than tenable position, due to broken promises, don’t be Pollyannaish. Look at your dilemma for what it is, not necessarily the way you want it to be. Everything changes. And as they do, they don’t have to leave you in a lurch. You can prevent that from occurring by being aware of shifting alliances and making sure that you’re aligned with powers that will remain powerful. Do that as long as an association serves your needs, and you’ll be less likely to be broken by broken promises … and everything will be right with the world.

 

Remember, you’re always negotiating!

 

Listen to Greg’s podcast at https://anchor.fm/themasternegotiator

 

After reading this article, what are you thinking? I’d like to know. Reach me at Greg@TheMasterNegotiator.com

 

To receive Greg’s free “Negotiation Tip of the Week” and the “Sunday Negotiation Insight” click here https://www.themasternegotiator.com/greg-williams/

 

 

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