Complex Negotiation Skills in the Oil and Gas Industry

Improve your toolkit of tactics and techniques to develop long lasting commercial partnerships from complex negotiations unique to the international oil and gas industry

This highly practical and interactive three-day interactive programme will deliver:

  • Structured framework focused on high value negation to deliver a comprehensive approach to your deal in the shortest possible timeframe

  • Techniques, a range of tools and approaches which can be applied to substantially increase the probability of success in major negotiations

  • Individual personal development plan based on your strengths and weaknesses to ensure continued improvement when you return to the workplace

  • Access to the skills and expertise to a world class negotiation expert with extensive oil and gas experience who focuses on the long term gain for your organisation

  • Industry specific case studies focused on the practical issues that are unique to the high value, complex negotiations of the Oil and Gas Industry

  • A roll-out plan for developing your team and colleagues to deliver results at negotiation using the same winning tactics


What is the programme about?

As an industry Oil and Gas offers some of the largest, in terms of value and length, and complex deals in the commercial environment. Often incorporating multi parties, cross border issues, governments and vast cultural difficulties even the smallest deal can create negative outcomes if not handled appropriately.

Added to that negotiation is often an insufficiently structured process whereby factors such as personal style, history between the negotiators, and the extent and nature of the planning carried out can have a disproportionate impact on the negotiation.  There is often a lack of understanding of the alternatives which exist, the methodologies which have been developed, and the full range of options.  Given the complexities of the Oil & Gas industry, the need for standards of excellence when negotiating complex contracts has never been more important

While many have had some form of basic negotiation training, very few of us have taken this to the level required when we are dealing with high value and significant-impact negotiations. This programme has been specifically designed in the context of deals with significant sums of money at stake, when nothing less than “expert” status should be acceptable.

This three-day interactive programme will provide a complete negotiation methodology based on research carried out at the Harvard Business School.  Participants will be coached in its application and will be given an opportunity to explore and enhance their own negotiation skills.  Additional material based on research identifying the characteristics of successful negotiators is also applied.

By the end of the programme participants will have a comprehensive negotiation framework which they can use to:

Further develop their own skills
Improve the performance of staff and colleagues who also take part in negotiations
Ensure that a structured, comprehensive and consistent approach is used when planning major negotiations
PLUS: Included with the course material is a MS Excel based negotiation profiling tool which allows participants to understand their negotiating strengths and development opportunities

This course is for:

  • Negotiators
  • Business Development Managers
  • Country Managers
  • Commercial Managers
  • New Venture Managers
  • Legal Counsel and In-House Lawyers

This programme is essential if:

  • You are involved in high value or complex negotiations in the oil and gas industry
  • Your negotiation performance needs to be exceptional
  • You have a responsibility for making sure that team members who negotiate with suppliers, customers, JV partners and Governments are substantially better than “acceptable”.
  • You are responsible for maintaining strong relationships with trading partners
  • You are serious about developing value-adding relationship

The complexities associated with Oil & Gas Industry Contracts

Negotiations with Governments are always challenging, and negotiating with other oil industry organisations can also be fraught with difficulties.  The opening session of the programme explore some of the complexities of production sharing agreements, exploration contracts, joint ventures, construction of drilling platforms and bulk carriers, together with supplier contracts and HR agreements.

Alternative approaches to negotiation

Is there really only one type of negotiation?  Surely there are different approaches for different circumstances.  This session provides an overview of the different approaches which are possible and defines the criteria for determining which are appropriate when.

  • Competitive negotiation models
  • Collaborative models
  • Difficulties associated with traditional models of negotiation
  • Principled negotiation
  • Relationship management

The discussion includes a review of the suitability of each approach to different types of Oil & Gas negotiations

A guide to observing negotiations

We have all watched negotiations and felt that they were going well or at times not going well.  But how do you put your finger on what to do to turn around a negotiation which is not going well?  This session introduces a negotiation audit tool which helps to identify why a negotiation is or is not going well, and more importantly sets out what to do to improve one which is not going well.

  • Using a negotiation audit tool
  • Analysing approaches to control of the negotiation
  • Assessing relationship management factors
  • Diagnosing under-achievement
  • Identifying planning implications

Video case study

  • This session provides an opportunity for participants to apply the negotiation audit tool.
  • Participants use it to analyse a video of an oil industry negotiation, and draw conclusions about how performance of the participants could have been improved, and a better result achieved.

Managing relationships in the Oil and Gas Industry - The nature of effective relationships with suppliers, customers, colleagues within an organisation and third parties such as Government departments

As businesses look to develop long term collaborative relationships with suppliers and partners, there are a number of critical success factors which need to be taken on board.  This session explores and explains the factors which lead to successful “Relationship Management” approaches.

  • The myth of partnerships
  • The mismatch between negotiation and effective working relationships
  • Requirements for collaboration
  • Tools and techniques for moving towards a value managed relationship
  • Dealing with difficult people
  • Extracting benefit from supplier and customer meetings
  • Managing the relationship on an ongoing basis

The “Negotiation Excellence” model – The Oil and Gas case

Much is made of win / win approaches to negotiation, but most of these are actually “win / perceived win” or “big win / little win” approaches.  This session introduces a proven model which leads to genuine win / wins outcomes and which enhances relationships as part of that process.

  • The role of alternatives and power
  • Understanding genuine business interests and postures
  • Creating options for mutual gain
  • The role of legitimacy
  • Communication processes which underpin the relationship
  • Commitments and their role in relationships
  • Relationship audits

Negotiation – The People Dimension

  • Understanding personality types in your own team and in your counterparts
  • Personality types in action
  • Dealing with different - and difficult - personalities in negotiations
  • Ensuring the acceptability of feedback
  • Coaching, mentoring and developing staff

Negotiation planning

Although intuitively it seems that spending more time planning for a negotiation is likely to lead to increased chances of success, the evidence does not support this.  There is a body of research which demonstrates that it is not how long you spend planning that matters, but rather, how you spend the time.  This session sets out a time-effective approach to planning which is consistent with the Negotiation Excellence model.
A powerful spreadsheet based planning tool known as the “Commercial Framework” is introduced and participants are given an opportunity to apply it to a production sharing agreement negotiation.

  • Using the Commercial Framework to plan and prepare for an oil industry negotiation
  • Perceptions of the issues in negotiation
  • Planning for win / win
  • Planning for conflict
  • Generating creative solutions

Development Plans

Participants are given an opportunity to consider how their own negotiation performance can be improved.  An opportunity is taken to apply a negotiation profiling tool to each individual on the programme, and to discuss what that means in terms of personal development plans.  The profiling tool is a software based tool which is provided on disk, and which participants can share with colleagues and staff on their return to their organizations.

  • The negotiation profiling tool
  • Personal development opportunities
  • Realising development opportunities
  • Sharing the tool with colleagues
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Course Testimonials

“This is my first experience with Clarion Training. The course was very well organised and I will be recommending both this specific course and institute to my training advisors.” 

Raghda Mahdi, Senior Manager Shipping & Logistics Oman LNG

Delivered by

Eric Evans is an experienced and well respected international negotiation practitioner, consultan

Dates & Locations

This course is only available as a custom course tailored for your business, contact us to discuss your requirements.