Certificate in Negotiation Essentials: Program Summary

A negotiation certificate is generally a program that teaches students learned argument and reasoning techniques. Continue reading for an overview of the program, as well as career and salary info for some career options for graduates.

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Typically designed for business professionals, a certificate in negotiation essentials is a program lasting approximately one semester or less that teaches students about theories in mediation. It includes topics such as emotions in dispute resolution, negotiation theory, and the nature of conflict. The program consists of workshops and seminars, and may also be taken online.

Essential Information

Negotiation certificate programs, also called mediation, conflict resolution or dispute avoidance programs, are generally designed for business professionals, including entrepreneurs, managers, agents and executives. They typically last one semester or less and consist not only of classes, but also seminars, workshops and internships. Participants in such programs may be job-seekers trying to improve their hireability or working professionals who are expected to report back to management and associates in order to benefit the entire organization. Others may be more interested in conducting research or independent studies. These programs are available at several on-campus locations, some during the weekend or evenings to accommodate working professionals. Online programs are an also an option.

Career Human Resources Managers Purchasing Managers, Buyers and Agents
Education Requirements Bachelor's degree At least a high school diploma, though a bachelor's degree is typical for managers
Job Growth (2018-2028)* 7% 1%
Median Salary (2018)* $113,300 $118,940 for purchasing managers
$62,750 for buyers and purchasing agents

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Career Options

Relevant fields for negotiation skills include business, politics, sales, human resources and purchasing. Due to the variability of fields, career prospects, including potential earnings, can vary. Below are two career options that may require individuals to utilize negotiation skills to carry out their job duties.

Human Resources Managers

Human resources managers are responsible for administrating the human resources functions of an organization, including recruitment and retention of employees, designing employee benefits packages, and regulatory compliance with various state and federal employment, tax and employee benefit laws. A negotiation certificate may be beneficial to human resources managers when engaging in employee dispute mediation and implementing disciplinary procedures.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicts that human resources managers can expect to see roughly faster than average job growth of 7% from 2018-2028. The BLS also reported that in May 2018, the median salary for human resources managers was $113,300.

Purchasing Managers, Buyers and Agents

Purchasing managers, buyers and agents are responsible for buying goods and services for their organizations, which could include local, state or federal government agencies or institutions, private businesses or private non-profit agencies. A negotiation certificate may provide skills beneficial to purchasing managers, buyers and agents while negotiating purchasing contracts.

According to the BLS, purchasing managers, buyers and agents are predicted to have 7% employment decline from 2018-2028. The BLS also reported that purchasing managers earned a median salary of $118,940 and buyers and purchasing agents earned a median salary of $62,750 in May 2018.

Negotiation Certificate Program Overview

Many certificate programs require the completion of several core courses that provide students with perspective on key negotiation aspects that can be employed in bilateral, multilateral and third-party settings. Enrollees also gain insight to their own style and plan how to further develop as negotiators. Due to the concise nature of certificate programs, elective courses are often not interdisciplinary; instead, they allow students to target areas where they may wish to especially improve, such as how to prepare for negotiations, gain personal feedback on negotiation skill, apply strategies in global environments and negotiate in a team environment. Core theories targeted include:

• Nature of conflict

• Negotiation theory

• Emotions in dispute resolution

• Assessing power balance

• Maximizing influence

• Identifying motive

• Targeting bottom lines

Business professionals who take the certificate program in negotiation essentials program have a range of different backgrounds, such as human resources, purchasing, politics, and sales. Some individuals choose to enroll in the certificate program in order to enhance their employability. These programs usually last a semester or less and cover general topics such as negotiation strategies and styles.

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