Penn State Extension Dairy Team to Host Negotiation Workshop

Posted: April 10, 2014

On April 30, dairy producers, managers and herdsmen can learn negotiating strategies to be more effective.

Building effective negotiations skills can be valuable in dealing with vendors, employees and business associates. To help dairy producers and management increase their confidence, the Penn State Extension Dairy Team will hold a workshop in which participants learn strategies for successful negotiation.

Scheduled for April 30 at the Ranch House Restaurant, 190 Keystone Road, Edensburg, the session will be held from from 9:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Registration fee is $25 per person.

Dairy Extension Educator Ximena del Campo explained that the workshop will teach participants how to "maximize the value of outcomes by learning to plot a course from beginning, to commitment to completion."

Topics will include basics of principled negotiation, in which participants learn effective strategies for negotiating, giving information on how to successfully negotiate with various audiences. Participants will be taught negotiation steps for success, learning how to strengthen skills and build "negotiation vocabulary," as well as crucial negotiation strategies and components.

Participants will have the opportunity to practice negotiation techniques in a non-threatening environment in small group discussions, allowing hands-on experience practicing these skills with other managers.

del Campo said, "There can be differences on perceptions and different interpretations of facts. Because of this, it's important to understand the other's viewpoint."  She explained people generally react with anger or fear when their interests are threatened, and this can interfere with effective communication. She suggested that negotiating parties should view each other as partners rather than opponents.

del Campo stated, "Utilizing principled negotiation, producers will be able to reach a mutually satisfying agreement, meeting the needs of both parties, and creating a win-win solution."  She said the most important component of effective negotiation is to always focus on the problem, not the people.  "Negotiation is not really only about getting what you want at that point in time, but building a long term bridge among partners."

Participants in a negotiation presentation at the 2014 Pennsylvania Dairy Summit said they learned the importance of being a price maker instead of a price taker and that your attitude and your facial expression plays a key role.

This program is eligible for 2 SmartStart credits from AgChoice Farm Credit. Register online at or by calling toll-free 888-373-7232. This program is designed for dairy producers, owners, managers or herdsmen.