The Harvard Negotiation Law Review’s 2013 Symposium, entitled, “Ideas and Impact: Roger Fisher’s Legacy,” will be held on Saturday, March 2, 2013 at the Harvard Law School in Austin North from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The full-day event will explore the contributions of the late Roger Fisher, co-founder of the Harvard Negotiation Project and
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The Program on Negotiation will present an episode of The Advocates, an award winning television show created in 1969 by the late Roger Fisher.
The Program on Negotiation will screen an episode of The Advocates with Roger Fisher, former professor at Harvard Law School and co-founder of PON. Commentary will be provided by Lisle Baker, Professor of Law at Suffolk University Law School and Bruce Patton, Distinguished Fellow and co-founder of the Harvard Negotiation Project.
How can you uncover additional value, make useful trades, and put together a package that exceeds your party’s expectations? Here are four value-creating moves that all negotiators should add to their toolkit.
It is the spring of 1997 and I am sitting in Pound 107 while Roger Fisher ’48, Williston Professor of Law, Emeritus, is telling a story about his serving as a weather reconnaissance pilot in World War II. As a teaching assistant for the Negotiation Workshop, I have heard the story at least a dozen times by now and feel my mind wandering. And yet, against my will, as the story reaches its crescendo and the combination punch line/negotiation issue flows from Roger’s lips, I find myself involuntarily leaning forward and, a second later, helplessly bursting into laughter. The note I jot down to myself is: “All of life is about who tells better stories.”
Roger Fisher, co-founder of the Program on Negotiation and the Harvard Negotiation Project, died on August 25 at age 90. A true pioneer and leader, he helped launch a new way of thinking about negotiation, and he worked tirelessly to help people deal productively with conflict.
“Through his writing and teaching, Roger Fisher’s seminal contributions literally changed the way millions of people around the world approach negotiation and dispute resolution,” commented Professor Robert H. Mnookin, Chair of the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School. “He taught that conflict is not simply a ‘zero-sum’ game in which a fixed pie is divided through haggling or threats. Instead, he showed how by exploring underlying interests and being imaginative, parties could often expand the pie and create value. Here at the Program on Negotiation and the Harvard Negotiation Project, both of which Roger helped launch, we, his colleagues, are committed to carrying on his work of improving the theory and practice of negotiation and dispute resolution.”
Roger Fisher, one of the cofounders of the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School and Samuel Williston Professor of Law, Emeritus, was honored on the 8th of April with a celebration of his career, research, and contributions to both the HLS community and the field of negotiation.
Imagine that you are buying a used car from its original owner. Of course, you want to get the best deal you can for your money, while your counterpart wants to maximize the value of his asset. After haggling with one another, each side finally arrives at a price point acceptable to both parties.
The above scenario is common in many transactional negotiations: you play your cards close and share as little information as needed to achieve the end goal.
The hardest step in negotiation is often the first. Costly lawsuits can drag on it everyone is afraid to be the first to blink. Prospective buyers and sellers can waste endless hours dancing around a possible deal. And in collective bargaining, labor and management teams sometimes paint themselves into corners by refusing to negotiate “matters of principle.”
Adapted from “Contracts 101: What Every Negotiator Should Know about Contract and Agency Law” by Guhan Subramanian (professor, Harvard Business School and Harvard Law School), first published in the Negotiation newsletter, February 2006.
While hammering out an agreement, a mid-level manager offered a customer a significant price discount. When the discount failed to materialize, the customer