You should never negotiate with yourself. That is, once you make an offer to your opponent you should never improve your offer until your opponent has made a counter offer. Kids very frequently make this mistake when they first begin negotiating. They are anxious for a response from their opponent and make successive offers trying to elicit that response. They may say, “How about $40… $35?… $30?…”
Coach them against this urge. Make an offer and wait. If your opponent asks you to make another offer, “that’s not good enough” for instance, you can just say, “I’m not going to negotiate against myself. You need to tell me what works for you. Make me an offer.”
If, on the other hand, you are in a negotiation with someone who is negotiating with themselves, then just sit there and let them continue.
Watch for this in your kids and take the opportunity to point it out. Tell them to learn to be comfortable waiting for a response. The silence can be awkward, but don’t let that push you into negotiating with yourself! If need be you can do some role playing with them to get the point across.
Don’t let them leave your classroom without this critical life skill!