Learn how to negotiate like a diplomat, think on your feet like an improv performer, and master job offer negotiation like a professional athlete when you download a copy of our FREE special report, Negotiation Skills: Negotiation Strategies and Negotiation Techniques to Help You Become a Better Negotiator, from the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School.

Trust

Firm reliance on the integrity, ability, or character of a person or thing. See Also: Relationship Rules and Business Negotiations, Dealmaking: Don’t Wait for Them to Blink, ISIS, International Negotiation, and a Refusal to Communicate.

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Good For You, Great For Me

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Lawrence Susskind Win at win-win negotiating! Find trades that create much more value than either you or your opponent thought possible while satisfying the interests of your back table – the people to whom you report. … Read More 

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MESO: Make Multiple Equivalent Simultaneous Offers to Create Value in Dealmaking Table

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MESO negotiation, a negotiation strategy for creating value with a counterpart who may be reluctant to negotiate, allows negotiators to propose multiple offers without signaling commitment or preference for any one option. Business negotiators that practice integrative negotiation strategies often complain that although they try to focus on creating value, they run into far too many difficult … Read More 

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Akron Steel

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Allison Berland A non-team, multi-issue, non-scorable exercise that gives participants an opportunity to map a conflict at the workplace. … Read More 

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Coastal Flooding and Climate-Related Risks in Launton

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Seven-person, multi-issue facilitated negotiation among local government, community, business, and environmental representatives trying to reach agreement on a strategy for managing climate change risks in a small, beachfront community. … Read More 

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Overcoming Cultural Barriers in Negotiation: How to Launch More Productive Cross-Cultural Negotiations

Posted by & filed under International Negotiation.

On February 28, 2014, Russian troops swarmed into Crimea following violent clashes between protesters and police in Kiev, Ukraine, and Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych’s abrupt departure from the country. Urging Russian president Vladimir Putin to retreat, Western leaders desperately searched for a way to help him “save face.”


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It was a daunting task. Having made an … Read More 

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What To Do With Hexiglass?

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Beth Doherty and Hal Movius 3-player, non-scoreable game designed to teach the benefits of managing communication and trust in the context of a technology negotiation. … Read More 

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Crisis Communication: How to Avoid Being Held Hostage by Crisis Negotiations

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In this free special report negotiation experts offers advice on how to turn crisis situations into collaborative negotiations. Throughout the report, you will discover how to apply the lessons of professional hostage negotiators, avoid disasters through careful planning, diffuse tensions with angry members of the public, and break through impasse with open communication. … Read More 

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How to Conduct a Mediation During Crisis Negotiations

Posted by & filed under Mediation.

The most difficult peace negotiations in recent decades—in Ireland, the Middle East, the former Yugosloavia, and Sri Lanka—were plagued by a common enemy: violent disruptions by spoilers opposed to the peace process. In each of these cases, extremists stalled negotiations by creating security crises that divided public opinion and drove negotiators apart. What can be … Read More 

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Win As Much WATER As You Can!

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Catherine Ashcraft Four-person, scoreable, prisoner’s dilemma game where players decide how to handle low water levels in 10 quick rounds; an adaptation of the case “Win As Much As You Can.” … Read More 

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Police Negotiation Techniques and Negotiation Skills from the New York City Police Department Hostage Negotiations Team

Posted by & filed under Crisis Negotiations.

Few negotiators can imagine negotiation scenarios more stressful than the kinds of crisis negotiations the New York City Police Department’s Hostage Negotiation Team undertake. But police negotiation techniques employed by the New York City Police Department’s Hostage Negotiations Team (HNT) in high-stakes, high-pressure crisis negotiation situations, outlined in a recent article from Jeff Thompson and … Read More 

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Probation Games

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Lawrence Susskind and Susan Podziba A set of three simulations developed for and used in training court probation officers in negotiation techniques. … Read More 

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These Examples Illustrate the Importance of Negotiation in Business

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

A number of noteworthy disputes among businesses, organizations, and individuals made headlines in 2013 and demonstrate the importance of negotiation in business. We point out the negotiation angles behind stories first reported by the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and other media outlets. Keep an eye out for common themes among these top … Read More 

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Oil Pricing Exercise

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Roger Fisher Two-team, scoreable, multiple round, “prisoner’s dilemma”-style negotiation between representatives of two countries over the monthly price for barrels of oil. … Read More 

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Strategic NegotiationsA Theory of Change in Labor-Management Relations

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Labor-management relations have changed dramatically in recent years. Global competition and related economic, technological, political, and institutional changes have forced the collapse of the traditional social compact—based on steadily increasing wages and benefits for workers in exchange for unchallenged managerial autonomy—underpinning the U.S. labor market. In today’s competitive environment, managers can no longer afford the … Read More 

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Negotiation Examples in Business: Putting Your Negotiated Agreement Into Action

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A recent article in Tufts Magazine by Program on Negotiation faculty member Jeswald Salacuse discusses an oft neglected aspect of negotiation: putting into action what negotiators agree to at the bargaining table. Normally negotiators focus on the deal-at-hand as well as those present at the negotiation, neglecting other aspects of the negotiated agreement that would not … Read More 

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Negotiation Genius

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Deepak Malhotra & Max Bazerman Clear and methodical advice for preparing for and executing any negotiation, drawing on decades of behavioral research and the experience of thousands of business clients – Co-winner of the 2008 CPR Award for Excellence in ADR (Outstanding Book Category) … Read More 

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How to Build Trust at the Bargaining Table Using Negotiation Examples of Bargaining Techniques

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To maximize the joint gain created by a deal, both sides need to take risks which requires building trust in negotiations. Here’s how negotiators can establish the necessary trust. What began as a misunderstanding about specifications and deadlines between a manager at RLX, a software development firm, and a manager at Impress, one of its clients, had … Read More 

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Getting Together Building Relationships as We Negotiate

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Expanding on the principles, insights, and wisdom that made Getting to Yes a worldwide bestseller, Roger Fisher and Scott Brown offer a straightforward approach to creating relationships that can deal with difficulties as they arise. Getting Together takes you step-by-step through initiating, negotiating, and sustaining enduring relationships-in business, in government, between friends, and in the … Read More 

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Work Rules Strategy

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Kathleen Valley Two-team iterated scoreable prisoner’s dilemma exercise set in a labor/management context … Read More 

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Williams Medical Center

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Eileen Babbitt and Lawrence Susskind Five-party negotiation among representatives of pharmacists, physicians, nurses, and administrators to develop recommended changes to the drug prescription policy of a large metropolitan teaching hospital … Read More 

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United States v. Dunlop

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Dan Vogel, under the supervision of Robert Bordone Four-person, three-issue, two-round between U.S. prosecutors, an executive charged with securities fraud, and defense counsel over the terms of a possible plea bargain; attorney-client interviews are followed by a plea bargain negotiation … Read More 

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For Better Negotiation Training, Study the U.S. Government’s Mistakes

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Business professionals seeking to improve their negotiation training can learn a great deal from the mistakes made in newsworthy negotiations. To take one recent example, Steven M. Davidoff of the New York Times’ “DealBook” recently analyzed how the U.S. governments rushed negotiations to save U.S. automaker Chrysler led to a costly long-term problem. … Read More 

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Student Paper

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Bruce Patton Simple two-party awareness-building negotiation between a student and a professor regarding an assignment submitted after the deadline … Read More 

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Is Your Negotiation Style Holding You Back?

Posted by & filed under Win-Win Negotiations.

All of us have a personal approach to negotiation. Here’s how to make the most of yours. Your boss has asked you and a colleague to collaborate on a marketing campaign for your small company. At your first meeting, you and Jeff, your colleague, present several proposals to each other. You believe Jeff’s plans aren’t … Read More 

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Stakes of Engagement, The

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Nicholas Sabin Two-party, multi-issue, scoreable negotiation regarding a prenuptial agreement, calling for a balance of substantive and relationship concerns … Read More 

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Ship Bumping Case

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Andrew Clarkson Two-party international negotiation between Russian and U.S. negotiators over a naval incident; teams internally prepare instructions for a representative not involved in the preparation … Read More 

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Rosenberg v. Lincoln Landscaping

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Pat Aaron Three-person small claims mediation between a landscaping company and its client over a disputed bill and quality of service … Read More 

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Negotiation Techniques and Negotiation Tips: Diagnose Your Negotiating Style

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Negotiators tend to fall into very specific negotiation styles or employ similar sets of negotiation techniques. Negotiation research has identified four such negotiation styles: individualists, cooperators, competitives, and altruists. Learn how each negotiation style impacts the negotiation process at the bargaining table and how to adjust your negotiation strategies accordingly. … Read More 

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Puerto Mauricio Development Conflict Simulation – Parts I & II

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Mieke van der Wansem, Tracy Dyke and Lawrence Susskind Thirteen-person, multi-issue, two-round, partially scoreable negotiation among government, industry, environmental, and farming stakeholders to develop a land-use plan (Part I) and among additional government stakeholders over plan approval (Part II) … Read More 

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PowerScreen Problem

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Bruce Patton, Mark Gordon and Andrew Clarkson Two-party integrative negotiation between the lawyers for business partners concerning the ownership of a new computer program one of them has developed … Read More 

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Understanding Exclusive Negotiation Periods

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The clearest method for achieving exclusivity is an exclusive negotiating period, during which both sides agree not to talk to third parties, even if approached unexpectedly by others. In some arenas, these terms are called no-talk periods. … Read More 

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Open Lands A Private Planning Negotiation

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Patrick Field, Ric Richardson, and John Harrison Eight-person facilitated negotiation among seven landowners to develop voluntary private land-use plan to provide financial security while preserving open space and agricultural land … Read More 

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MC Metals

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Dan Delisi, under the supervision of Lawrence Susskind and Paul Levy Six-person integrative negotiation among representatives of manufacturing company, occupational safety agency, union, local fire department, and local technical expert to settle claims of safety violations that allegedly caused two employee deaths … Read More 

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Case Study of Conflict Management and Negotiation: The Challenges of Negotiating Online

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

Negotiation research suggests that e-mail often poses more problems than solutions when it comes to relationships, information exchange, and outcomes. Here is a case study of conflict management and negotiation about the challenges of building rapport with your counterpart when negotiating online. First, establishing social rapport via e-mail can be challenging. The lack of nonverbal cues … Read More 

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Body Language in Negotiation Process and Beyond

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But what, exactly, do negotiators learn from nonverbal behavior? Dowe read each other’s gestures and expressions accurately or not? Can we increase our negotiation success by deliberately modifying our own nonverbal behavior? Here we analyze three scenarios to help you understand how nonverbal behavior may be affecting your negotiations. … Read More 

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East Falls Brownfields

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Tracy Dyke, under the direction of Lawrence Susskind and Susan Podziba Seven-person, non-scoreable, facilitated negotiation among planners, regulators and activists regarding the cleanup and redevelopment of environmentally contaminated property … Read More 

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Discount Marketplace and Hawkins Development

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Lawrence Bacow Two-party negotiation between a shopping center developer and a prospective anchor tenant over the terms of the proposed lease’s “use, assignment, and subletting” clause … Read More 

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Contract Negotiations in the Building Trades

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Lawrence Susskind Nine-party, multi-issue contract negotiation among three coalitions involved in the building trades; includes internal coalition meetings before the external negotiations … Read More 

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Common Measures

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Paddy Moore, Hal Movius, and Lawrence Susskind Five-party, four-issue negotiation among managers at an aircraft engine company with the goal of improving quality and operations processes … Read More 

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Integrative Negotiations Examples: Negotiating Skills and Negotiation Tactics for Managing Relationships

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Training.

A relationship is a perceived connection that can be psychological, economic, political, or personal; whatever its basis, wise leaders, like skilled negotiators, work to foster a strong connection because effective leadership depends on it. Positive relationships are important not because they engender warm, fuzzy feelings, but because they engender trust – a vital means of securing … Read More 

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Collective Bargaining at Southern Express

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Lawrence Susskind and Charles Hecksher Two-team, multi-issue collective bargaining contract negotiation between three union representatives and three management representatives for a major airline; includes an internal team meeting before external negotiations … Read More 

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Collective Bargaining at Central Division

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Lawrence Susskind, Charles Hecksher, and Elaine Landry Two-team, multi-issue collective bargaining contract negotiation between three union representatives and three management representatives for a telephone company; includes an internal team meeting before external negotiations … Read More 

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Book Contract, The

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Michael Wheeler Two-party, single-issue distributive negotiation between a publisher and a literary agent over the advance payment for the agent’s unpublished but very promising client … Read More 

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BMP Policy Meeting

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Paddy Moore, Hal Movius, and Lawrence Susskind Five-party, four-issue internal negotiation among employees of a major engine manufacturer to agree on procurement guidelines in preparation for external negotiations with suppliers … Read More 

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Arms Control on Cobia

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P. Terrance Hopmann Multi-issue arms control negotiation among representatives of eight fictional countries … Read More 

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Why is Negotiation Important in Business? Your Reputation at the Bargaining Table

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In multi-issue negotiations, research suggests that the advantage goes to negotiators with a reputation for collaboration rather than competition. In a series of studies by Catherine H. Tinsley and Kathleen O’Connor, participants were told they would be negotiating with someone who had either a tough reputation, a cooperative reputation, or an unknown reputation. Although this … Read More 

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Pepulator Pricing Exercise

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Mark Drooks and Mark Gordon Two-team, scoreable, multiple round, “prisoner’s dilemma”-style negotiation between representatives of two companies over the monthly price for fictional products called “pepulators” … Read More 

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Parker-Gibson

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Michael Wheeler Two-party, single-issue distributive negotiation between two neighbors regarding the potential sale of a vacant lot; refinement of Appleton-Baker … Read More 

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What Makes a Good Mediator?

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What makes a good mediator? And how is it that mediators—who themselves lack any power to impose a solution—nevertheless often lead bitter disputants to agreement? … Read More 

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Flagship Airways

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Paddy Moore, Hal Movius and Lawrence Susskind Six-person, four-issue negotiation between three representatives of an industrial manufacturer and three representatives of its primary client over restructuring of an existing purchase agreement … Read More 

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Emotional Intelligence as a Negotiating Skill and Negotiation Tactic

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The concept of emotional intelligence burst into the cultural imagination in 1995 with the publication of psychologist Daniel Goleman’s bestselling book of the same name. Experts have predicted that scoring high on this personality trait would boost one’s bargaining outcomes and have found many successful negotiation examples using emotional intelligence in their research. After all, … Read More 

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Sally Soprano I

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Norbert Jacker and Mark Gordon Two-party integrative negotiation between agents for an opera singer and an opera house regarding a possible contract for an upcoming production … Read More 

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Win Win Negotiation Example: Different Cultures, Shared Meals

Posted by & filed under Win-Win Negotiations.

From movie moguls hammering out film deals in Los Angeles to publishers and agents assessing each other’s tastes in New York, the “power lunch” has become a familiar institution. Across the globe, negotiators often do business over shared meals, whether out of convenience or as part of a concerted effort to get to know one … Read More 

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Conflict Negotiation Strategies: Apple’s Apology in China

Posted by & filed under Dispute Resolution.

In China this April, Apple CEO Timothy D. Cook made the unusual move of apologizing to Chinese customers for his company’s warranty policy and promised to make amends, the New York Times reports. On March 15, International Consumers’ Day in China, the nation’s largest state-run television network criticized Apple for giving iPhone customers in China a … Read More 

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Conflict and Negotiation Case Study: Long-Term Business Partnerships and Negotiated Agreements

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

To protect the future interests of their organization, negotiators sometimes must accept fewer benefits or absorb greater burdens in the short run to maximize the value to all relevant parties – including future employees and shareholders – over time. Suppose that the operations VPs of two subsidiaries of an energy company are preparing to negotiate the … Read More 

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Negotiation Training with Heart

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Training.

In typical negotiation skills training, we are taught to get beyond our emotions and look at situations rationally. There’s merit to this approach, of course, as feelings can cloud our judgment. But consider what Lieutenant Jack Cambria, who retired in August as the longest-running head of the New York Police Department’s (NYPD’s) hostage negotiation team, said … Read More 

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Seeking a Win-Win Negotiation? Pass the Chips and Salsa

Posted by & filed under Win-Win Negotiations.

From movie moguls hammering out film deals in Los Angeles to publishers and agents assessing each other’s tastes in New York, the “power lunch” has become a familiar institution. Across the globe, negotiators often do business over shared meals, whether out of convenience or as part of a concerted effort to get to know one … Read More 

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Alternative Dispute Resolution: Corporate Stakeholder Engagement and Mineral Extraction in Colombia

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I want to make four simple points regarding corporate stakeholder engagement and mineral extraction in Colombia. I presented these ideas several weeks ago at a Harvard Law School seminar sponsored by the Colombian government. We had senior officials present along with a great many Colombian graduate students studying at Boston-area schools. I think these prescriptions … Read More 

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How Does Mediation Work in a Lawsuit: Choosing the Right Mediator

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How does mediation work in a lawsuit? For those new to mediation, we advise you being by getting a list of mediators from a reputable provider agency. You can find these agencies by searching under “dispute resolution” or by inquiring with your organization’s legal department. You should ask the mediators for names of the chief … Read More 

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Define Dispute Resolution: Understanding Uncertainty, Risk, and Opportunity

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When countries face contending water claims, one of the biggest obstacles to reaching an agreement is uncertainty. Specifically, there are three types of uncertainty: uncertainty of information, uncertainty of action, and uncertainty of perception. In part 2 of this 5 part series, Program on Negotiation faculty member Lawrence Susskind explains the uncertainties facing negotiators trying … Read More 

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Define Negotiation Skills: Trust in Negotiations

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Trust may develop naturally over time, but negotiators rarely have the luxury of letting nature take its course. Thus it sometimes seems easiest to play it safe with cautious deals involving few tradeoffs, few concessions, and little information sharing between parties. But avoiding risk can mean missing out on significant opportunities. For this reason, fostering … Read More 

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After the West Coast Ports Conflict, Damage Remains

Posted by & filed under Crisis Negotiations.

No one wants to engage in crisis negotiations. When parties need to hurriedly work out a solution to a shared problem, time is short, tempers are frayed, and the disaster is looming. Feeling they’ve exhausted good-faith bargaining, parties in crisis negotiations may believe they face an impossible choice between caving in to the other side’s … Read More 

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The Moral Quandary: Negotiation Exercises Featuring Ethical Dilemmas

Posted by & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

In a negotiation, few issues heighten tensions faster than when one party feels that the other party has done something ethically or morally incorrect. To help professionals prepare for times like this, the Program on Negotiation’s Teaching Negotiation Resource Center (TNRC) offers a variety of negotiation exercises designed to teach participants how to handle disputes that … Read More 

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Powerful Conflict Resolution Games To Help You Teach Negotiation

Posted by & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

From complicated negotiation strategies to artful subterfuge, conflict resolution games are one of the very best ways to prepare for the challenges of real-world negotiation. Games that employ a Prisoner’s Dilemma structure (where rational parties may not cooperate despite their best interests) enable participants to analyze negotiations, make strategic decisions, and anticipate their counterpart’s next … Read More 

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Dismantling a Family Business: Three Brothers, Game Theory, and a Coin Toss

Posted by & filed under BATNA.

The dissolution of a partnership can be fraught with conflict, especially when the business is all in the family. But as Charles V. Bagli recently reported in the New York Times, three New York brothers recently proved that careful planning—and a willingness to trust in fate—can be keys to a peaceful breakup. … Read More 

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How Case Studies Facilitate Negotiated Agreements

Posted by & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

What do a Nobel Peace Prize recipient, the CEO of an international financial advisory firm, and the former United States ambassador to the United Nations have in common? They’ve all received the Great Negotiator Award. Every year, the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School bestows this prestigious honor on distinguished leaders whose lifelong accomplishments in … Read More 

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Dealmaking: Beyond Collusion – How to Include Outsiders in Your Deal in Business Negotiations

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

The issue of bidder collusion raises a larger question for negotiators: What ethical responsibility do we have to those who aren’t seated at the table with us? Harvard Business School professor Max H. Bazerman uses the term “parasitic value creation” to describe the common tendency of negotiators to focus so narrowly on identifying benefits for those … Read More 

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International Negotiation Skills: Before Apologizing, Consider the Culture

Posted by & filed under International Negotiation.

In 2004, after Japanese regulators shut down Citigroup’s private bank in the country for breaking numerous laws, then-CEO Charles O. Prince made headlines by traveling to Japan, bowing deeply before television cameras, and apologizing for his firm’s mistakes. As unusual as it seemed in American eyes, the public apology was widely seen in Japan as … Read More 

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Beware the Domino Effect in International Negotiations

Posted by & filed under International Negotiation.

This expectation of a “domino effect” may be especially likely in international negotiations, where cultural differences and territorial concerns perpetuate an “us versus them” approach. Take the international debate over Japan’s long tradition of hunting whales, a practice that many other nations condemn as barbaric and have tried to halt. In 1986, the United States … Read More 

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In the NFL, Roger Goodell’s Dealmaking for Mutual Gains

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

Because an agent’s incentives are rarely, if ever, perfectly aligned with those of her principal (principal-agent theory), many business negotiators have been burned by agents who put their own interests first. Agents in many fields, for example, have a motivation to close deals quickly – rather than for the best price – and earn quick … Read More 

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Dealmaking: Don’t Wait for Them to Blink

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

Adapted from “Negotiators: How You Can Avoid Striking Out,” first published in the December 2012 issue of Negotiation. In labor disputes, negotiators on both sides are likely to overestimate the odds that the other side will view their proposals as fair. In fact, however, self-serving perceptions of what constitutes a fair settlement can cause negotiators to … Read More 

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Negotiation Skills: Negotiating to Give Good Advice

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Many of us advise others on the job yet fail to plan adequately for this responsibility. Set up a strong relationship by negotiating your role as advisor. Name-calling, backstabbing, and turf wars erupted among President Barack Obama’s civilian and military advisors in 2009, as he tried to devise a strategy for ending the war in … Read More 

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Negotiation Skills: Which Negotiating Style Is Best?

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Is one negotiating style “better” than another? Most research suggests that negotiators with a primarily cooperative style are more successful than hard bargainers at reaching novel solutions that improve everyone’s outcomes. Negotiators who lean toward cooperation also tend to be more satisfied with the process and their results, according to Weingart. At the same time, … Read More 

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Conflict Management: The Lasting Influence of Emotions

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

Psychologists have long known that an emotion triggered in one realm—anger over an argument at home, for example—can affect how we behave in a subsequent situation, including a negotiation. Such incidental, or unrelated, emotions might influence how fully we trust someone or how much we’re willing to pay for a product. Incidental emotions can even … Read More 

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Conflict Resolution: When Forgiveness Seems Elusive

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

In the aftermath of events ranging from the Catholic Church’s child sexual abuse scandal to the 1994 Rwandan genocide, victims have received apologies from those who caused or perpetuated their suffering. Yet those who have been harmed are not always willing or able to forgive. In the context of business negotiations, when a counterpart apologizes … Read More 

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Negotiation Skills: Threat Response at the Bargaining Table

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

When someone issues a threat or an ultimatum, take a step back and diagnose the problem. Consider how you would respond to threats and ultimatums such as these during negotiation. In the face of such tough talk, should you strike back with a counterthreat? Probably not. Because counterthreats raise the emotional temperature of a negotiation, … Read More 

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How to Deal When the Going Gets Tough

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

Most business negotiators understand that by working collaboratively with their counterparts while also advocating strongly on their own behalf, they can build agreements and longterm relationships that benefit both sides. During times of economic hardship, however, many negotiators abandon their commitment to cooperation and mutual gains. Instead, they fall back on competitive tactics, threatening the other … Read More 

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Negotiators: Guard Against Ethical Lapses

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

During the past several years, one scandalous story of unethical behavior after another has made headlines: Countrywide’s and AIG’s risky business practices, trader Bernard Madoff’s Ponzi scheme, and former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich’s alleged attempt to sell a U.S. Senate seat. As instances of people behaving badly proliferate, some commentators have wondered if we are … Read More 

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Cooperation in Congress? Liberals and Libertarians Polish Their Negotiation Skills

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

On June 19, Republican Representative Thomas Massie of Kentucky, a libertarian, teamed up with two liberal Democrats, Zoe Lofgren of California and Rush D. Holt of New Jersey, to push through an amendment that places new prohibitions on the National Security Agency and the CIA’s surveillance operations, including barring the agencies from engaging in warrantless … Read More 

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In International Negotiations, Memories of “Mr. Yes”

Posted by & filed under International Negotiation.

On July 7, Eduard Shevardnadze, foreign minister to Mikhail Gorbachev and a driving force behind the perestroika era in Russia, died in his native Georgia at the age of 86. In June 1985, Shevardnadze—then a lifelong Communist official with no diplomatic experience—was reportedly taken aback when his old friend Gorbachev asked him to take charge of … Read More 

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In Conflict Resolution, Fairness Concerns Loom Large

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

On June 30, compensation expert Kenneth R. Feinberg unveiled a plan to give restitution to victims of accidents related to the fatal ignition flaw in 2.6 million General Motors vehicles. The plan—designed to be as generous as other compensation plans Feinberg has overseen, including payouts to victims of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings—is part of … Read More 

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For Steve Ballmer, Negotiation Skills Go on the Back Burner

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

On May 30, the National Basketball Association (NBA) announced it had approved former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer’s record-breaking $2 billion offer to buy the Los Angeles Clippers from Shelly Sterling, wife of Clippers owner Donald Sterling. In April, the NBA banned Sterling from the league for life after racist remarks he made during a phone … Read More 

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Dealmaking: What About the Fine Print?

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

Choosing the right words for your contract is a negotiation in itself. Five guidelines will help you achieve greater precision. When negotiators sign on the dotted line, they sometimes worry about the wrong concerns. “Did I overpay?” wonders the buyer as he inks the sales agreement. Across the table, the seller is thinking, “I bet if I’d pushed … Read More 

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In Mediation, Set Conditions with Care

Posted by & filed under Mediation.

On April 9, Israel said it was “deeply disappointed” by remarks by Secretary of State John Kerry that seemed to primarily blame Israel for the current breakdown in U.S.-mediated Middle East peace talks, as reported in the New York Times. Last July, the United States brought Israel and the Palestinians back together for a series of … Read More 

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Top 10 International Negotiations of 2013: Apple’s Apology in China

Posted by & filed under International Negotiation.

In China this April, Apple CEO Timothy D. Cook made the unusual move of apologizing to Chinese customers for his company’s warranty policy and promised to make amends, the New York Times reports. On March 15, International Consumers’ Day in China, the nation’s largest state-run television network criticized Apple for giving iPhone customers in China a … Read More 

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Top Business Negotiations of 2013: Fiat’s Pursuit of Chrysler

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

In 2009, when Chrysler on the verge of financial collapse, the Treasury Department negotiated a swift solution to save it from extinction. Chrysler would go into bankruptcy, and then its ownership would be divided up, with the majority going to a Chrysler union workers’ health-care trust, 20% to Italian automaker Fiat, 10% to the U.S. … Read More 

Daily

Dealmaking: Why It’s Tempting to Trust Your Gut

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

In his best-selling novel Blink, Malcolm Gladwell scans the psychological literature and uncovers fascinating nuggets of knowledge. He describes people who can assess the integrity of a work of art within seconds, predict the likelihood that a couple will get divorced based on a short conversation, and assess their romantic interest in another on a “speed … Read More 

Daily

The Deal is Done – Now What?

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

At last, the deal is done. After 18 months of negotiation, eight trips across the country, and countless meetings, you’ve finally signed a contract creating a joint venture with a Silicon Valley firm to manufacture imaging devices using your technology and their engineering. The contract is clear and precise. It covers all the contingencies and has … Read More 

Daily

South Korea Shows Off Savvy Negotiation Skills

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

In negotiation, a combination of several negotiation skills and tactics may be needed to break past a difficult impasse. A recent protracted negotiation between North Korea and South Korea provides a case study. In April, North Korea abruptly removed its workforce from the Kaesong Industrial Complex, a joint venture it launched within its borders nine years … Read More 

Daily

Beyond the Bottom Line

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

What do people value when they negotiate? Research by Professors Jared R. Curhan and Heng Xu of MIT’s Sloan School of Management and Hillary Anger Elfenbein of Berkeley’s Haas School of Business provides useful insights concerning this basica question. Using survey data collected from everyday negotiators and filtering it through a sorting procedure conducted by negotiation … Read More 

Daily

Negotiation Design Dimensions: A Checklist

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Here the Program on Negotiation offers a checklist of negotiation design categories. Whether your overall negotiation design is decide-announce-defend (DAD) or full-consensus (FC), or a hybrid of both, raising these issues is usually preferable to falling into a set of important decisions by default. … Read More 

Daily

Plant a Trust Land Mine

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

In any negotiation, you’re likely to have information about the other party or about the deal (industry facts, economic health, new products, and so on) that the other party might not know you have. … Read More 

Daily

Fickle Intuition

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Placing Trust in Others When it comes to trusting others, negotiators often rely on their gut instincts. Recent studies indicate, however, that extraneous factors can sway such judgments. For example, Michael Kosfeld and other University of Zurich researchers introduced a twist in a classic trust game in which subjects must decide on how much money to invest when … Read More 

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Daily

Negotiating the Fiscal Crisis

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

How can we avert a full-throttle drive over the fiscal cliff? Despite some promising signs of movement on both sides of the aisle, the current negotiation approach – positional bargaining – is bound to bring us dangerously close to the edge. … Read More 

Daily

Are You an Overconfident Negotiator?

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

In 1901, J.P. Morgan wanted to buy the Carnegie Steel Company from its founder, Andrew Carnegie. Carnegie was 65 years old and considering retirement. As Harold C. Livesay recounts in his book Andrew Carnegie and the Rise of Big Business (Little, Brown, 1975), when Carnegie finally decided he was ready to sell, he jotted down his … Read More 

Daily

Overconfidence About Future Failure or Success: Limiting Strategic Miscalculation in Business Negotiations

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Over-precision doesn’t necessarily lead us to think we’re better negotiators than we actually are. Rather, it causes us to trust our initial instincts too much. Sometimes we’re actually overconfident that we’ll perform worse than others. This tendency applies to competitive situations, including negotiation. Those who underestimate their ability to be competitive usually will choose to stay out … Read More 

Daily

Measuring the Cost of Betrayal Aversion

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

Richard Zeckhauser and Program on Negotiation faculty member Iris Bohnet have found that negotiators leave substantial amounts of money on the table due to betrayal aversion. They conducted experiments in which they compared people’s willingness to take risks in two decision situations. The first situation is a lottery whose outcome is based on chance. Participants … Read More 

Daily

Water Diplomacy: Using a Creative Approach

Posted by & filed under Dispute Resolution.

The case of Jordan and Israel shows how even countries at war can negotiate a water agreement if it is framed in non-zero sum terms and trust continues to be built over time. And that is not the only case of a treaty that has succeeded against all odds to bridge conflicting water interests; the … Read More 

Daily

Water Diplomacy: The Role of Science in Water Diplomacy

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

Scientific and technical knowledge is important in water negotiations, but not in the ways it has often been used. It is counterproductive to use scientific information to justify arbitrary (political) decisions. For example, scientific information about water has increased dramatically over the last several decades, but our ability to manage water resources has not improved … Read More 

Daily

Water Diplomacy: Creating Value and Building Trust in Transboundary Water Negotiations – Israel and Jordan, From War to Water Sharing

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

Most difficulties in water negotiations are due to rigid assumptions about how water must be allocated. When countries (or states) share boundary waters, the presumption is that there is a fixed amount of water to divide among them, often in the face of ever-increasing demand and uncertain variability. Such assumptions lead to a zero-sum mindset, … Read More 

Daily

Roger D. Fisher, 1922-2012

Choosing to Help

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

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 … Read More 

Daily

What Can an Apology Do?

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

Following a violation, negotiators become less cooperative, less trusting, more upset, and more likely to retaliate against the perceived perpetrator. An apology can reverse the damage. … Read More 

Daily

When an Apology is Most Effective

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

Some researchers have found that the most effective type of apology depends on the nature of the mistake made. In a study by Peter Kim of the University of Southern California, Cecily Cooper of the University of Miami, Kurt Dirks of Washington University, and Donald Ferrin of Singapore Management University, participants assumed the role of a … Read More 

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Daily

How Mood Affects Negotiators

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

What are social psychologists learning about the connections among emotions, negotiation, and decision making? Negotiation contributor Jennifer S. Lerner of Harvard Kennedy School and her colleagues have identified two critical themes. First, they have studied the carryover of emotion from one episode, such as a car accident, to an unrelated situation, such as a workplace … Read More 

Daily

Getting Off on the Wrong Foot

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

Sometimes negotiators get off on the wrong foot. Maybe you and your partner had a different understanding of your meeting time, or one of you makes a statement that the other misinterprets. Such awkward moves at the beginning of an interaction can lead one party to question the other side’s motives. In a recent article, Robert … Read More 

Daily

Rapport Comes First

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

How is it that mediators – who themselves lack any power to impose a solution – nevertheless often lead bitter disputants to agreement? Substantive expertise helps, as does keen analytic skill. According to a recent survey by Northwestern University law professor Stephen Goldberg, veteran mediators believe that establishing rapport is more important than employing specific techniques … Read More 

Daily

Mediating Better Community Relations in New Orleans

Posted by & filed under Mediation.

On May 14, Susan Hutson, the independent police monitor for the city of New Orleans brought together community stakeholders and police officials to help formulate a program that would allow police officers and citizens to mediate minor disagreements, the New Orleans Times-Picayune reports. Aided by a professional mediator, citizens and officers would sit face to … Read More 

Daily

Negotiation Myths, Exposed

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

In her book, The Mind and Heart of the Negotiator, Leigh Thompson cites four widely held myths that bar negotiators from improving their skills. This analysis is worth the attention of anyone who wants to move beyond platitudes to a deeper understanding of negotiation. Myth 1: Great negotiators are born. While we’re all born with varying abilities … Read More 

Daily

Leading Horses to Water

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

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 … Read More 

Daily

2012 Great Negotiator Award event will honor former Secretary of State James A. Baker, III on March 29th

Posted by & filed under Great Negotiator Award, International Negotiation, News.

The Program on Negotiation (PON) at Harvard Law School and the Future of Diplomacy Project at Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) will jointly honor former U.S. Secretary of State James A. Baker, III with the 2012 Great Negotiator Award on Thursday, March 29, 2012, at the Ames Courtroom, Austin Hall, Harvard Law School. The Great Negotiator Award … Read More 

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Trying to Forgive and Move Forward

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution, Dispute Resolution.

In business negotiations, when a counterpart apologizes for harming or offending you, should you forgive and move forward? What if doing so seems impossible? In a chapter in The Negotiator’s Fieldbook (American Bar Association, 2006), Ellen Waldman and Frederic Luskin write that forgiveness isn’t an essential component of negotiation; you may be able to get to … Read More 

Daily

Negotiate How You’ll Negotiate

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

When a negotiation ends, our satisfaction with the final outcome doesn’t depend solely on how much we objectively gained or lost, according to research by Jared Curhan and Hen Xu of Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Hillary Anger Elfenbein of the University of California at Berkeley. In fact, negotiator satisfaction hinges on four factors: our … Read More 

Daily

Negotiate your role as advisor

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

Whether you spend most or just a fraction of your workday advising others, it pays to reconsider how you approach your advisees, writes Tufts University professor Jeswald W. Salacuse in his book The Wise Advisor: What Every Professional Should Know About Consulting and Counseling (Praeger, 2000). When advisors and their clients clash over expectations and … Read More 

Daily

When not to show your hand

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

In all your negotiations, you must calculate the risks and rewards of sharing information with your counterpart. Here, we consider four types of information that may be best kept under wraps: sensitive or privileged information, information that isn’t yours to share, information that diminishes your power, and information that may fluctuate. Fearful of being hurt by … Read More 

Daily

Why your lawyer could be wrong about apologies

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

If you’ve ever had a minor car accident in which neither you nor the other driver was obviously at fault, familiar advice may have run through your head as you got out of your car: Don’t say you’re sorry! Don’t say you’re sorry! Most of us have been cautioned in such contexts that an apology can … Read More 

Daily

Professor Susskind talks negotiation obstacles

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

Q&A with Professor Susskind, MIT’s Ford Professor of Urban and Environmental Planning, and Vice Chair of the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School Q: You’ve taught for years about overcoming organizational obstacles. What are the most common roadblocks to effective negotiations? Typically, obstacles occur at all four stages of the negotiation process. First is the preparation … Read More 

Daily

Avoid conflict and broken trust

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

While negotiations are inherently risky, there are proven ways to reduce risk and improve your odds of success. To do so, you must focus on the very basis of your relationship with the other party: trust. Think about a time when you lost trust in a fellow negotiator. Did you try to renegotiate the terms of … Read More 

Daily

The Shalit Deal: Opportunities for Negotiators

Posted by & filed under International Negotiation, Middle East Negotiation Initiative.

Last weekend’s violent deal between Israel and Islamic Jihad In Gaza was interpreted by some as proof that the Gilead Shalit prisoner exchange compromised Israeli security. Beyond these recent events it is indeed clear, as Professor Robert H. Mnookin and others warned, that the Shalit deal generated numerous risks for Israel, the Palestinian Authority, and … Read More 

Daily

How facial expressions affect trust

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “Negotiating with All Your Senses,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter, December 2010. When we’re deciding whether to trust a counterpart, his facial expressions matter a great deal, suggests a study by Jeroen Stouten of the University of Leuven, Belgium, and David De Cremer of the Rotterdam School of Management, the Netherlands. In … Read More 

Daily

The link between happiness and negotiation success

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “How Mood Affects Negotiator Trust,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter, September 2006. Social psychologists are learning a great deal about the connections among emotions, negotiation strategies, and decision making. Negotiation contributor Jennifer S. Lerner of Carnegie Mellon University and her colleagues have identified two critical themes. First, they have studied the carryover of … Read More 

Daily

Defend yourself against deception

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “Are You Prepared for Dirty Tricks?” first published in the Negotiation newsletter, August 2010. Should you simply refuse to negotiate with someone you know has lied to you? Consider the results of a 1998 survey of 750 MBA students by researchers Robert J. Robinson, Roy J. Lewicki, and Eileen M. Donohue. Most of the … Read More 

Daily

When emotions linger

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “The Lasting Influence of Emotions,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter, April 2010. Psychologists have long known that an emotion triggered in one realm—anger over an argument at home, for example—can affect how we behave in a subsequent situation, including a negotiation. Such incidental, or unrelated, emotions might influence how fully we trust someone … Read More 

Daily

When irrationality isn’t the issue

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations, Daily.

Adapted from “Is Your Counterpart Rational . . . Really?” by Deepak Malhotra (professor, Harvard Business School), first published in the Negotiation newsletter, March 2006. How can you negotiate with someone who seems irrational? First, by questioning whether it is reasonable for you to judge your counterparts as irrational. As it turns out, behavior that negotiators … Read More 

Daily

Negotiation tactics in the spotlight as debt ceiling debate continues

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

The lack of progress on the debt ceiling negotiations has raised serious concerns that an agreement will not be reached before the August 2nd deadline.  How have the negotiations gotten so derailed? In a recent interview on Radio Boston, Professor Robert Bordone, director of the Harvard Negotiation and Mediation Clinical Program, suggested that one of the … Read More 

Daily

Why “thinking” trumps “blinking”

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills, Uncategorized.

Adapted from “In Negotiation, Think Before You ‘Blink’,” by Max H. Bazerman (professor, Harvard Business School), first published in the Negotiation newsletter, October 2006. Most experienced negotiators trust their instincts. They believe they can identify a good business opportunity within five minutes. They think they can quickly assess whether a salesperson is honest. And if … Read More 

Daily

The Value of Satisfaction

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

What do people value when they negotiate? Research by professors Jared R. Curhan and Heng Xu of MIT’s Sloan School of Management and Hillary Anger Elfenbein of Berkeley’s Haas School of Business provides useful insights concerning this basic question. Using survey data collected from everyday negotiators and filtering it through a sorting procedure conducted by negotiation … Read More 

Daily

Sad Negotiators, Poor Outcomes?

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution, Daily.

Adapted from “How Mood Affects Negotiator Trust,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter, September 2006. In recent years, social psychologists have begun to explore connections among emotions, negotiation, and decision making. Negotiation contributor Jennifer S. Lerner of Carnegie Mellon University and her colleagues have identified two critical themes. First, they have studied the carryover of emotion … Read More 

Daily

Debunking Negotiation Myths

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “Negotiation Myths, Exposed,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. In her book The Mind and Heart of the Negotiator, Leigh Thompson cites four widely held myths that bar negotiators from improving their skills. This analysis is worth the attention of anyone who wants to move beyond platitudes to a deeper understanding of negotiation. Myth 1: … Read More 

Daily

Put Apologies in Your Toolbox

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “Regain Your Counterpart’s Trust with an Apology,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. The problem: Whether you meant to or not, you’ve hurt or offended your negotiating counterpart through your words or actions. Perhaps you’ve shown up late for an appointment one time too many, neglected to follow through on a key contract term, … Read More 

Daily

How to Get to the Table

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

Adapted from “Leading Horses to Water,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. The hardest step in negotiation is often the first. Costly lawsuits can drag on if 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 … Read More 

Daily

Avoid the Green-eyed Monster

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

Adapted from “Negotiating with the Green-eyed Monster,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. Envy can cause us to engage in deception at the bargaining table. That’s the cautionary finding of research by Simone Moran of Ben-Gurion University in Israel and Maurice E. Schweitzer of the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. Why might negotiators be more … Read More 

Daily

Norwegian Foreign Minister visits PON

Posted by & filed under Daily, International Negotiation.

On December 6, 2010, faculty and associates from the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School met at a private lunch with Norway’s Foreign Minister, Jonas Gahr Store, and the ambassador of Norway to the U.S., Wegger Chr. Strommen. At the meeting, the Foreign Minister described how he helped bring decades of negotiation with the … Read More 

Daily

Who’s Looking Over Your Shoulder?

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations, Daily.

Adapted from “Onlooker Alert!” First published in the Negotiation newsletter. Unless your official title is “lawyer” or “agent,” you probably don’t think of yourself as an agent. But if you’ve ever represented a family member, your boss, your department, or your organization in a negotiation, you’ve served as that party’s agent. Representing others at the bargaining table … Read More 

Daily

The Power of Schadenfreude

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “Negotiating with the Green-eyed Monster,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. Envy can cause us to engage in deception at the bargaining table. That’s the cautionary finding of recent research by Simone Moran of Ben-Gurion University in Israel and Maurice E. Schweitzer of the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. In one experiment, Israeli … Read More 

Daily

“The Afghan Challenge: What will it take for them to trust their own security forces?”

Posted by & filed under Daily, Events, The Kelman Seminar.

“The Afghan Challenge:  What will it take for them to trust their own security forces?”

with Paul Bricker and Abdul Waheed Wafa

Date: December 7, 2010

Time: 4:00-6:00 PM

Where: CGIS Building, Weatherhead Center for International Affairs, 1737 Cambridge Street, Room N-262, Cambridge MA Contact Chair: Donna Hicks (dhicks@wcfia.harvard.edu). Speaker Bios Paul W. Bricker, United States, colonel, United States Army is currently … Read More 

Daily

Change the Trust Default

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “How to Build Trust at the Bargaining Table,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. Carol’s longtime doctor diagnoses her with a serious illness and recommends immediate, aggressive treatment. Carol would like to seek a second opinion, but she doesn’t want to offend her doctor—who, after all, has always provided her with excellent care. Carol … Read More 

Daily

Honor Your Fellow Negotiator

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “Negotiators: Guard Against Ethical Lapses,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. During the past couple of years, a number of scandalous stories involving unethical behavior made headlines: Countrywide’s and AIG’s risky business practices, trader Bernard Madoff’s Ponzi scheme, and former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich’s alleged attempt to sell a U.S. Senate seat. As instances … Read More 

Daily

Conquering the Challenges in the Toughest Negotiations

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

Negotiating with an adversary you don’t trust or who you think may be out to harm you requires a special set of skills. Your tone and language are just two key components. In a recent interview on the PBS NewsHour, Robert Mnookin, chair of the Program on Negotiation and author of Bargaining With the Devil, … Read More 

Daily

Trusting from Square One

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “How Much Should You Trust?” by Iris Bohnet (professor, Harvard Kennedy School) and Stephan Meier (professor, Columbia Business School), first published in the Negotiation newsletter. What’s the best way to cope with a fellow negotiator who has betrayed your trust? Ignoring the problem is rarely the best solution. When you distrust someone, you’re forced to … Read More 

Daily

Choosing Your Next Relationship

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “For Better or Worse: How Relationships Affect Negotiations,” by Kathleen L. McGinn (professor, Harvard Business School), first published in the Negotiation newsletter. Six years ago, Esther Lorenza, an experienced entrepreneur and the founder of a new Internet and catalog retailer, concluded that only one supplier could meet her unique product specifications and high standards … Read More 

Daily

Making Time for Relationships

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations, Daily.

Adapted from “Leverage Time to Your Advantage,” by Deepak Malhotra (professor, Harvard Business School), first published in the Negotiation newsletter. Businesspeople often make the mistake of beginning negotiations only after an offer is on the table or after an old contract has expired. Why is this a problem? When money is at stake, it can be … Read More 

Daily

Think Fast!

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “What Negotiators Can Learn from Improv Comedy,” by Lakshmi Balachandra (lecturer, MIT Sloan School of Management) and Michael Wheeler (professor, Harvard Business School), first published in the Negotiation newsletter. You’re onstage without a script, relying on your mind and wits to come up with lines and actions that advance the game. Should you trust … Read More 

Daily

Check Your Impulses

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “Fickle Intuition,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. When it comes to trusting others, negotiators often rely on their gut instincts. Recent studies indicate, however, that extraneous factors can sway such judgments. For example, Michael Kosfeld and other University of Zurich researchers introduced a twist in a classic trust game in which subjects must … Read More 

Daily

Smoking out liars

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “How Body Language Affects Negotiation,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. In a real-life example of the power of image, Christian Karl Gerhartsreiter, a German, successfully passed himself off as a member of the Rockefeller family for many years while living in the United States. Armed with little more than an aloof personality and … Read More 

Daily

Occupational safety

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

The PON Clearinghouse offers hundreds of role simulations, from two-party, single-issue negotiations to complex multi-party exercises. The following role simulation is a six-person integrative negotiation among representatives of a manufacturing company, an occupational safety agency, a union, a local fire department, and a local technical expert to settle claims of safety violations … Read More 

Daily

Securities fraud plea bargain

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

The Clearinghouse at PON offers hundreds of role simulations, from two-party, single-issue negotiations to complex multi-party exercises. United States v. Dunlop is a four-person, three-issue, two-round exercise between U.S. prosecutors, an executive charged with securities fraud, and defense counsel over the terms of a possible plea bargain; attorney-client interviews are followed by … Read More 

Daily

Announcing the 2010-2011 PON Graduate Research Fellows

Posted by & filed under Daily, Graduate Research Fellowships, PON Graduate Research Fellowships.

The Program on Negotiation Graduate Research Fellowships are designed to encourage young scholars from the social sciences and professional disciplines to pursue theoretical, empirical, and/or applied research in negotiation and dispute resolution. Consistent with the PON goal of fostering the development of the next generation of scholars, this program provides support for one year of … Read More 

Daily

After the deal is inked

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “Uncover Hidden Value with a Post-settlement Settlement,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. You’ve reached an agreement that you find satisfactory and your counterpart does as well-but you can’t shake the sense that you could have done even better. For example, you might be happy with the price you achieved in a purchasing contract … Read More 

Daily

Staying in touch with strategic partners

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations, Daily.

Adapted from “Handle with Care: Negotiating Strategic Alliances,” by Lawrence Susskind (professor, Massachusetts Institute of Technology), first published in the Negotiation newsletter. Some business partnerships are more important than others. This is especially true in supply chains, where producers of key components can be irreplaceable. Consider the relationship between two hypothetical companies, Brattlebury Corporation, which manufactures … Read More 

Daily

“Are We Exclusive?”

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

Ron McAfee, a carpenter and roofing expert, spent considerable time working with a condominium association on the design of a new roof deck. After gaining agreement on the proposed layout, design, and materials, McAfee submitted a written bid of $12,500. One of the board members subsequently showed McAfee’s plans to another roofer, who offered to … Read More 

Daily

A more cooperative divorce

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “Negotiating a More Civil Divorce,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. In the United States, lawyers who recognize the benefits of collaborative negotiation are sometimes stymied by vengeful clients and ruthless opposing counsel.  Many attorneys put up with a contentious settlement process in which litigation is a threat. Yet some U.S. lawyers have begun … Read More 

Daily

When We Expect Too Much

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

How often have you heard a friend or colleague refer to a contract as being “in the bag,” only to find out later that the deal didn’t go through? There always turns out to be a good reason a negotiation fell apart. Yet the fact remains that most negotiators are overconfident about their chances of … Read More 

Daily

Allies and Enemies

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

Imagine that you and a colleague get into an argument about the layout of a final report in front of a coworker you both like. Now suppose the same argument occurs in front of someone your colleague likes but you do not or vice versa—in front of an ally who is your colleague’s foe. As … Read More 

Daily

Choosing a mediator

Posted by & filed under Daily, Mediation.

Adapted from “Beyond Blame: Choosing a Mediator,” by Stephen B. Goldberg (professor, Northwestern University), first published in the Negotiation newsletter.

When a negotiation escalates into a dispute, most managers understand the value of seeking out a mediator for professional assistance with the matter. The question of whom to hire, however, is less clear-cut. What type of … Read More 

Daily

Business Negotiations: Spoiler Alert!

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

At one time or another, most of us have confronted a fellow negotiator who seemed intent on blocking even our most reasonable requests and actions. This was the situation faced by Alexis, the CIO at a midsize publishing company. Phil, the company’s CEO, hired Alexis to create an online information system tailored to the needs … Read More 

Daily

To trust or not to trust

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “The Payoff of Trust,” by Iris Bohnet (Professor, Harvard Kennedy School), first published in the “Negotiation newsletter.” It’s natural to fear trust betrayal, or the violation of pivotal expectations of trustworthiness. Recent corporate and religious scandals have tragically demonstrated the substantial costs of such betrayals. Victims suffer emotional harm, and their ability to trust … Read More 

Daily

Turn Vicious Cycles Into Virtuous Ones

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

For decades, Hormel Foods and its employees enjoyed one of the most cooperative and productive labor-management relationships in the processed foods industry. But beginning in the late 1970s, when Hormel pushed for wage concessions, the company’s relationship with its workforce began to deteriorate, especially at the plant in Austin, Minn., the quiet “company town” where … Read More 

Daily

When It Pays to Delay

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

Kathy, a serial entrepreneur, was negotiating the acquisition of a boutique software-development firm when a dispute arose regarding the valuation of one of the software firm’s assets. Specifically, the firm owned the rights to a technology patent of uncertain value. The firm’s owner argued that this patent was worth millions. Kathy agreed that the patent … Read More 

Daily

Go the extra mile

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “Build Rapport—and a Better Deal,” by Janice Nadler, professor, School of Law, Northwestern University. In negotiation, rapport is a powerful force that can promote mutually beneficial agreements. Negotiators who already have a good working relationship are fortunate to have rapport built into their interactions. Strangers, however—especially those whose communications are limited to telephone or … Read More 

Daily

How to say “I’m sorry”

Posted by & filed under Daily, Dispute Resolution.

Adapted from “Wise Negotiators Know When to Say ‘I’m Sorry’” by Maurice E. Schweitzer, Associate Professor, the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. In negotiation, it’s unavoidable: sooner or later, you’ll do or say something that offends or hurts your counterpart. Whether or not the harm you cause is intentional, you’ll need to rebuild trust … Read More 

Daily

Be sure to give at the office

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

Reciprocation tactics are tried and true. Politicians “logroll” votes on pet projects, companies offer free product samples to consumers, and charitable organizations include small gifts when soliciting donations. According to the norm of reciprocity, if you’re nice to me, I’ll be nice in return, and vice versa. In the realm of negotiation, you can gain many … Read More 

Daily

Negotiation Journal July issue focuses on mediation, multi-party negotiation, trade negotiations and curiosity

Posted by & filed under Daily, Mediation.

As the use of mediation continues to grow, researchers continue to examine what makes mediators effective and what the impact of mediation is on parties in dispute. Four articles in the July 2009 issue of Negotiation Journal provide an in-depth view of mediation effectiveness, with some interesting findings. In the first article, Stephen Goldberg, Margaret Shaw, … Read More 

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Sharing the market

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

The PON Clearinghouse offers hundreds of role simulations, from two-party, single-issue negotiations to complex multi-party exercises.  The Pepulator Pricing Exercise is a two-team, scoreable, multiple round, “prisoner’s dilemma”-style negotiation between representatives of two companies over the monthly price for fictional products called “pepulators”. SCENARIO: The pepulator market is controlled by two giant … Read More 

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Daily

Practice taking risks

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

The Clearinghouse at PON offers hundreds of role simulations, from two-party, single-issue negotiations to complex multi-party exercises. Win as Much as You Can is a four-person, simplified, iterated prisoner’s dilemma exercise. SCENARIO: This exercise is analytically similar to both the Oil Pricing and Pepulator Pricing exercises. Participants’ sole objective is to maximize their … Read More 

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Resolving Hot Conflicts: Skills for Managers

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

Conventional wisdom suggests that team conflicts be resolved by focusing on the task at hand and avoiding interpersonal relationship issues. However, Amy Edmonson of Harvard Business School and Diana McLain Smith of The Monitor Group argue that this approach only works with issues that are “cool” because they can be resolved using objective means. On the … Read More 

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Negotiating with Your Children

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Negotiating with your children may seem counterintuitive but parents can build stronger relationships with them by implementing a problem-solving approach when trying to resolve family conflicts. In his book How to Negotiate with Kids…Even When You Think You Shouldn’t (Viking, 2003), Scott Brown, a founder of the Harvard Negotiation Project at Harvard Law School, outlines a … Read More