How Professionals Make Insurance
Negotiations a Breeze

See also: Problem Solving Skills

Negotiating well is a tricky skill to master. It’s not often we get the opportunity to negotiate a deal for ourselves, so those of us that do get to practice it every day have a significant advantage over those that don’t.

You’ve probably sat in on a meeting or worked with a professional and wondered how they’ve been able to secure such a great deal for themselves. Is it magic? No, it’s a tried and tested skill developed through years of practice.

If you’re one of the many people looking to improve their negotiation skills, especially when it comes to insurance, this article will offer key insight into how the professionals make sure they’re on the right side of the deal every time.

Businessmen shaking hands

They Know How to Shop Around

A key part of a successful negotiation is starting secure in the knowledge you’re talking to the right people, but having alternative options in your back pocket, just in case.

The best negotiators never commit too early, they shop around for great deals and make an informed decision based on the information they’ve gathered from talking to different providers and experts.

Doing this successfully is partly down to knowing where to look. While insurance search engines and price comparison sites are great for breaking down the available options and filtering out irrelevant providers, great negotiators know to look for bespoke options that they can work down to a more reasonable price, rather than rigid providers who only offer set rates.

It takes extensive practice to learn about the current insurance landscape and what extras are included in killer deals, but that’s how the best negotiators make their decision. If you’re going into a meeting armed with a top deal from another provider, you’re working from a much stronger position than someone completely unaware of how they could make their money go further.

There’s no better time commitment than shopping around and doing your research.

They have a clear idea of what they want

This research will help you go in with a plan.

A plan is a little different than going in with an idea of the current insurance landscape. While that might tell you exactly what other providers are offering and at what price, a plan is exactly what you want to get from the meeting, and how high or low you’re willing to go.

Securing the right insurance is about winning a deal that suits your particular needs. For professionals, that might be coverage for their employers for a specific event they’re planning on holding or attending. Or it could be personal, such as life insurance. Whatever it is, the best negotiators know exactly what full protection means to them. That’s why they opt for bespoke deals and know how to negotiate them, as a bog-standard offer that anyone could come off the street and get isn’t suitable to their particular needs. 

But most importantly, what they want is...

They’re looking for more than value for money

The insurance game is changing.

As providers bump up their offers and include special features to try and beat out their competitors, it becomes harder for the unassuming public to really recognize what’s value for money.

Professional negotiators break through the confusion by knowing exactly what they want and looking for modern deals that suit them and their businesses.

Insurance isn’t always easy to understand. Even something as essential as home insurance has developed drastically over time, leading to adaptations such as flexible insurance for renters offered by innovative new companies such as Duuo. Recognizing how these services offer value for money for particular audiences and how they might benefit is what sets professionals apart.

If it’s more than just the raw numbers on the table, but the value of the services thrown on top, it gives you more leverage for your negotiation and more variants to debate and work with.

How to improve your negotiation techniques

To close off this article, let’s take a look at some ways you can work on improving your negotiation techniques, whether you’re trying to secure a better deal, ace a job interview or overcome any other challenge.

After all, from trying to break through to your students as a teacher or convince your friends to help you move out, so many things we do every day are small negotiations it’s important to have the skills for.

Prepare, prepare and prepare some more

Everyone knows preparation is important, whether you’re working towards an exam or closing in on a key client deal. Many of us have grand ideas for how we’re going to prepare, but most of us fail to follow through with it.

Preparation is about self-discipline and routine. Find a space to work and people you can practice your negotiating techniques on. After all, if you’re heading into a meeting without any expectation of what it’s going to be like or how you’ll react to a particular line of questioning or rejection, you’re likely to fall flat on your face.

An alternative way to approach preparing for a negotiation is to consider learning presentation skills. This can improve your public speaking skills and help you form your ideas and demands into clear and coherent statements.

Be positive

Positively accounts for a lot when it comes to negotiation. A negative mindset will only get you so far, and if you approach from a defeatist point of view, you’re more likely to accept a poor deal.

Negotiations can be long, taxing affairs, where discussions get heated and limits are tested. It’s important to stay positive and understand what’s part of the game and what’s actually an unfair demand. You can’t storm out of the negotiation at the first poor offer or take personal offense.

Focus on outcomes, not the challenges before you. Yes, you might be stuck at an impasse, but that’s just one of many stages of the negotiation process. This guide to staying calm in meetings is a great place to start.

Don’t underestimate communication

The marvels of the modern world have made communication easier than ever. When you think about it, there’s no reason negotiations should be confined simply to the meeting room. They can take place over a long period of time, by video chat or text.

It’s crucial you always have channels of communication open between you and the party you’re negotiating with. You never know when they might break, or inspiration may strike, making it easier for a party to come through with the offer that pulls everything you’ve discussed together.

Communication isn’t just about getting the job done, but also establishing trust. If you’re working on behalf of a business, this is particularly important, as building a level of trust between you and a provider won’t just improve the deal you’re working on but also help you to build contacts and a relationship that can make your offer more lucrative and affordable when it comes to renewing.

Building a personal rapport might not sound professional, but it’s becoming an increasingly important part of doing business. Before you know it, you’ll be negotiating without even realizing it.

Negotiating isn’t for everyone, especially on a topic as serious as insurance for yourself and your business.

It’s hard to develop the skills of a professional without first becoming one yourself, but this guide should help you to re-think your approach to negotiation tactics, develop a strong sense of perseverance and use your personality to get the most for your money.

Further Reading from Skills You Need

The Skills You Need Guide to Interpersonal Skills eBooks.

The Skills You Need Guide to Interpersonal Skills

Develop your interpersonal skills with our series of eBooks. Learn about and improve your communication skills, tackle conflict resolution, mediate in difficult situations, and develop your emotional intelligence.

About the Author

Rachel Devitt is Content Specialist at Duuo, an online insurance solution with the mission of making tenant insurance easy and accessible for all.