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Commercial negotiation: area of work

Commercial negotiation, also known as commercial management, involves negotiating contracts and managing projects for the maximum return, as well identifying and developing new business opportunities.

What it involves

Commercial negotiators, or commercial managers, have an overview of the whole sales process and could even be responsible for a commercial team and the implementation of a wider sales plan. As a commercial negotiator, you will have particular focus on negotiating the best possible deal and managing business contracts and projects from inception to completion. You will need to understand the business needs of your customers, assess any potential risks and provide the appropriate products or services.

You will:

  • research the market
  • analyse sales data
  • provide financial reports
  • assess and identify opportunities for new business
  • advise on, negotiate and review commercial agreements
  • make changes that maximise the potential revenue.

Commercial negotiators are employed in a whole range of industries, from construction to IT, and engineering to retail.

What’s required

As you’d expect, excellent interpersonal skills are a must for commercial negotiators. You need to be comfortable with people and use all your tact, diplomacy and natural confidence to negotiate without lapsing into outdated hard-sell techniques. You need to be able to build solid relationships with business clients and develop them over a period of time with regular contact.

You also need strong comercial awareness and an understanding of your chosen market or industry in order to identify opportunities to develop new business. Research skills are beneficial, as is a logical approach to problems and the numerical ability to analyse complex sales data and reports. Any experience in a business environment will be valuable, especially if it has helped you to develop your interpersonal skills and business awareness and relates to the sector you want to work in.

Commerical negotiators can be found in a whole range of larger organisations, especially in the financial sector, and can get involved in areas such as property management, contracting and marketing.