In negotiation, BATNA refers to your best alternative to a negotiated agreement, or the best outcome you can expect if you fail to reach agreement at the bargaining table with your counterpart. Articles explore the concept of one’s BATNA as well as how to effectively identify your BATNA in negotiations and how to use this knowledge effectively in any type of negotiation, whether in business, international, or personal negotiations.

Discover step-by-step techniques for avoiding common business negotiation pitfalls when you download a FREE copy of our BATNA Basics: Boost Your Power at the Bargaining Table special report from Harvard Law School.

BATNA: Bringing a Deal Out of the Gutter

PON Staff   •  09/05/2014   • Filed in BATNA

Question: What should I do when a negotiation seems to be all about price, I have no BATNA, and the other side knows it? Answer: This question references the well-known negotiation term “best alternative to a negotiated agreement,” or BATNA, coined by Roger Fisher and Bill Ury in their seminal book Getting to Yes (Penguin, … Read More 

Is Negotiation Without a BATNA Possible?

PON Staff   •  08/15/2014   • Filed in BATNA

A Negotiation reader asked if negotiation without a BATNA is possible. David Lax, Managing Partner at Lax Sebenius and Program on Negotiation faculty member responds in this January 2008 article of “Dear Negotiation Coach.” I am looking for tips on negotiating with sole suppliers who know I don’t have any real outside alternative and who … Read More 

Exercising Its BATNA, American Apparel Ousts Dov Charney

Katie Shonk   •  07/23/2014   • Filed in BATNA

On June 18, the board of retailer American Apparel informed the company’s controversial founder, Dov Charney, that it was ousting him from his roles as chairman and CEO. For years, Charney had fended off sexual-harrassment lawsuits and rumors of inappropriate behavior. But only when the company’s creditors grew anxious about its long-term liability did the … Read More 

With No Good BATNA, Police Negotiators Accept Texts

Katie Shonk   •  06/02/2014   • Filed in BATNA

In their training, police and professional hostage negotiators are taught skills that will help them defuse tense situations over the course of long phone calls, such as engaging in active listening, determining the person’s emotions from his or her inflection, and trust building.
These crisis negotiators are being put to the test by young criminal suspects … Read More 

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