AI’s Rising Role in Business: Why Negotiators Remain Irreplaceable

By RED BEAR August 10, 2023 | 8 min read

There is no denying the power that AI and related technologies bring to the table. But, with any revolution comes disruption.

Research shows that over 75% of respondents are concerned about AI causing massive job losses — mostly in white-collar fields. On the other hand, some experts argue that AI will also create jobs to a whopping figure of 97 million by 2025.

It’s easy to fall on either side of the AI argument. It’s true that large language model (LLM) platforms like ChatGPT and Google’s Bard offer unparalleled access to information in a new and intuitive way, but they're not without their own set of issues.

These models are only as good as the data they train on — sometimes leading to biased responses, inconsistent or incomplete data, and flat-out inaccuracies.

So, when it comes to AI and negotiation, there is a lot to unpack.

How will AI affect the negotiation process? How can skilled negotiators adapt and integrate AI into their strategies and methodologies? That’s what we’ll explore in this blog.

AI can’t, and won’t, replace everything. 

What it does offer is a new way to work. Skilled negotiators will harness and utilize AI data and insights and integrate them into their own negotiation processes. Moreover, it can open up new perspectives toward using the fundamental principles and behaviors that drive effective negotiations.

Here at RED BEAR, we teach the future-proof fundamentals used by professional negotiators. 

Our methodology doesn't rely on simple tactics or one-time-use strategies; it relies on building an intimate understanding of the principles and behaviors that lay the foundation for maximizing outcomes and building relationships.

Let’s explore AI and learn how this valuable technology will affect the negotiation process.

The Growing Influence of AI in the Job Market

How will AI impact the job market? By some accounts, around 47% of jobs in the U.S. might be at risk.

We’ve only started to see this level of AI disruption in the last year, and the job market is already changing. Industry leaders need to understand the magnitude of this tech revolution and develop strategies to inject AI-based processes into their everyday operations. 

Moreover, AI is creating a whole new ecosystem of jobs. Of course, you have the developers and engineers dedicated to advancing AI, but you also have new jobs like prompt engineering or automation-related roles — which are only growing in demand.

It’s not enough to outsource repetitive or low-level tasks to AI. To master this new medium for productivity, workers need to work alongside AI.

This puts into focus the need for open minds and a willingness to adapt to change.

Working with AI requires a fundamental mindset shift. Rather than viewing these tools as a threat, workers need to embrace this new era of digital tech as a way to free them from less-rewarding work and hone in on the skills that AI simply can’t replicate.

AI and related tech might seem like a harbinger of the end for creative and white-collar work, but that’s far from the truth.

What it is doing is increasing efficiencies, changing the types of skills needed to succeed at these jobs, and, most importantly, making workers more productive.

AI can’t replace everything. But it will, and is, replacing some things. 

In the last few months, popular LLM ChatGPT-4 cracked the 90th percentile on the Uniform Bar Exam with a score of 297.

Does this spell the end of the law profession as we know it? Not quite. 

Leadership skills, creativity, complex problem-solving, decision-making, discernment, experience, and empathy; these are things AI simply can’t replace — at least for now.

“Leadership skills, creativity, complex problem-solving, decision-making, discernment, experience, and empathy; these are things AI simply can’t replace.”

Honestly, it may never happen.

This opens up a new landscape for negotiation professionals, but it will never replace them. 

The Essential Role of Human Negotiators

AI is an amazing technology set to transform the way virtually every industry approaches work. Negotiation is no expectation. 

Negotiation is a complex process. It involves not only the transactional aspects of deal-making but also the intricacies of human interaction and psychology. To get it right, skilled negotiators need to understand the needs, interests, and positions of all parties involved. They also need a firm grasp of the principles and behaviors that drive successful negotiations.

negotiating-profitable-agreements-white-paper

They need to be able to adapt to subtle cues, interpret underlying motivations, and respond appropriately to shape the dynamics of the conversation.

From creative problem-solving and strategic thinking to communication and persuasion, negotiators need to weave an intricate web of methods and processes to master any negotiation environment.

Even with these rapid advancements in AI, there is no denying the current models and offerings lack the inherent characteristics necessary for effective negotiation. Even so, there are plenty of tasks that AI can tackle somewhat flawlessly:

  • Data collection
  • Data entry
  • Automating everyday tasks

When skilled negotiators leverage AI, they gain the ability to quickly and efficiently gather, interpret, and analyze data. These insights will prove invaluable for the preparation and research side of negotiation planning.

But, as far as current LLM models are concerned, they cannot empathize with a human counterpart or pick up on subtle, non-verbal cues that could significantly impact the negotiation process.

As it currently exists, AI operates based on predefined algorithms and learned patterns. 

This means that it might struggle to adapt to unexpected changes or come up with innovative and creative solutions that haven't been pre-programmed into its repertoire.

In short, AI can play a critical role in supporting the negotiation process by offering research and data, but the human element — defined by empathy, adaptability, and creativity — remains crucial.

The Synergy Between AI and Negotiation

AI will undoubtedly play a role in the negotiation process.

But, to master this new medium for information exploration, negotiators need to learn to leverage AI when appropriate and leave AI out of the process when a human touch is necessary.

How might this work? For example, AI is a great tool for data processing and analysis.

AI tools can sift through large volumes of data, including past negotiation records, market trends, or other related data. This can provide some pretty significant insights to negotiators. 

Using AI, they can better identify patterns and trends, predict possible outcomes based on past experiences, and even highlight critical points that they otherwise might miss. 

AI doesn't stop being useful after the research phase; it continues to be a vital tool for negotiators during discussions. Real-time analytics provided by AI can empower negotiators with insights into possible negotiation strategies or potential responses.

Even with all these data-driven insights, the ultimate decision in negotiation still rests with the humans involved.

This is because negotiations aren’t simply about data, logical arguments, or even price. They’re about emotions, human interactions, and relationships. Skilled negotiators don’t just understand what the other party wants; they understand why they want it and how different solutions might make them feel.

selling-value-not-price-white-paper

AI can be a critical partner in offering data-driven insights and suggestions, but it lacks the human intuition and emotional intelligence needed to master the complexities of negotiation.

It doesn’t have the intuition that seasoned negotiators often rely on — born from lived experience and an understanding of human nature.

In an AI World, Build Confidence in Your Negotiation Process with RED BEAR

While AI might seem novel now, it will quickly become a part of everyday life. Once the initial AI fever wanes, those using this tech to support their current job will stand out.

It’s not about replacing jobs with AI; it’s about enhancing them — and negotiation is an excellent example of how this might work.

Negotiators that adapt their skills and behaviors toward effective AI usage will have a distinct advantage over those who don’t.

However, when everyone relies too heavily on AI to make decisions, it's going to be the negotiators who have taken the time to learn the right principles and behaviors of negotiation who will succeed.

However, when everyone relies too heavily on AI to make decisions, it's going to be the negotiators who have taken the time to learn the right principles and behaviors of negotiation who will succeed.

Even though negotiations will never truly become a solely AI-driven process, negotiators and businesses looking forward need to understand the power these tools bring to the table.

Here at RED BEAR, we offer unforgettable and customized learning experiences that stick. Our goal is to transform individuals into world-class negotiators. With our tried and true negotiation methodology, your team will learn the principles and behaviors that drive successful negotiations.

Moreover, our trainers are constantly learning and evolving their teachings — often incorporating the latest in AI technology to offer your team the most comprehensive approach to negotiation training in the industry.

Our training gets results. In fact, the average client return is $54 for every dollar invested in RED BEAR’s negotiation training — talk about ROI!

For more information, be sure to connect with the RED BEAR team today.

Fill out our contact form and we will be back to you in no later than one business day.

 

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