Negotiation Skills

Negotiation is a deliberative process between two or more actors that seek a solution to a common issue or who are bartering over an item of value. Negotiation skills include the range of negotiation techniques negotiators employ to create value and claim value in their dealmaking business negotiations and beyond. Negotiation skills can help you make deals, solve problems, manage conflicts, and build relationships as well as preserve relationships. Negotiation skills can be learned with conscious effort and should be practiced once learned.

Negotiation training includes the range of activities and exercises negotiators undertake to improve their skills and techniques. Role-play simulations developed from real-world research and negotiation case studies, negotiation training provides benefits for teams and individuals seeking to create and claim more value in their negotiations.

The right skills allow you to maximize the value of your negotiated outcomes by effectively navigating the negotiation process from setup to commitment to implementation.

Negotiation training courses include Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems, the Advanced Negotiation Master Class, Harvard Negotiation Institute programs, and the PON graduate seminars.

This training allows negotiators to:

  • Acquire a systematic framework for analyzing and understanding negotiation
  • Assess and heighten awareness of your strengths and weaknesses as a negotiator
  • Learn how to create and maximize value in negotiations
  • Gain problem-solving techniques for distributing value fairly while strengthening relationships
  • Develop skills to deal with difficult negotiators and hard-bargaining tactics
  • Learn how to match the process to the context
  • Discover how effectively to manage and coordinate across and behind-the-table negotiations
See full description

Professional Negotiators: Give Texts a Chance

Katie Shonk   •  08/19/2019   •  Filed in Negotiation Skills


Do you negotiate via text? If you’re a young person early in your career, your answer may be an emphatic yes. If you’re a little older, maybe you answered no. Even so, if you took a closer look at the saved text messages on your smartphone, you might find you’ve recently negotiated the division of … Read More 

Creating Value in Negotiations through Word Choice

Katie Shonk   •  08/05/2019   •  Filed in Negotiation Skills

creating value in negotiation

When the delegates from the Group of 20—the world’s 20 largest economies, or G20—met in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in December 2018 to negotiate reforms to the global trading system, the words they didn’t use turned out to be just as important as the ones they did when it came to creating value in negotiations. … Read More 

The Art of the Threat

PON Staff   •  07/31/2019   •  Filed in Negotiation Skills

What do you do when the other party won’t give you what you want in negotiation? There are many possibilities: Offer multiple proposals to find out what the other party values most, make tradeoffs to convey you’re willing to concede, go around the other party by finding a different negotiating partner, and so on. But if … Read More 

Effective Negotiation Techniques: Strive for a Precision Advantage

Katie Shonk   •  07/01/2019   •  Filed in Negotiation Skills

negotiation techniques

As you may have noticed, the first offer made in a negotiation often has a significant influence on the final outcome. In their research, psychologists Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky documented that the first number introduced in a negotiation serves as an “anchor” that can be impossible to ignore—no matter how irrelevant, outrageous, or insulting … Read More 

Negotiate a Deal that Lasts

PON Staff   •  06/03/2019   •  Filed in Negotiation Skills

negotiate a deal

When trying to negotiate a deal with a potential business partner, you need to come up with a plan for ensuring the two sides will mesh rather than clash. Facebook’s leaders and WhatsApp’s founders appeared to skip that vital step when negotiating the social media giant’s purchase of the text-messaging app in 2014—an oversight that … Read More 

Negotiation research you can use: Why displays of anger can backfire

PON Staff   •  05/31/2019   •  Filed in Negotiation Skills

When negotiators get angry, their counterparts often snap to attention, research shows. We tend to perceive negotiators who appear angry as hard bargainers, and thus make lower demands of them and offer them higher concessions than when dealing with happy opponents, University of Amsterdam professor Gerben A. Van Kleef has found in his research.

Sensing this, negotiators … Read More 

Types of Negotiation for Business Professionals

Katie Shonk   •  05/13/2019   •  Filed in Negotiation Skills

types of negotiation

What is negotiation? In her book The Mind and Heart of the Negotiator, Northwestern University professor Leigh Thompson defines negotiation as “an interpersonal decision-making process necessary whenever we cannot achieve our objectives single-handedly.” This definition stresses the interdependence that’s fundamental to any negotiation.

Narrowing in on this definition, when preparing to negotiate, business professionals often wonder … Read More 

Top 10 Notable Negotiations

PON Staff   •  04/23/2019   •  Filed in Negotiation Skills


In 2017, all eyes were on Washington as a president with a reputation as a dealmaker entered the White House. The following negotiations from the past year, both inside and outside of politics, caught our eye due to the broader lessons they offer business negotiators. … Read More 

Hardball Tactics in Negotiation Increase with Rivalry

Katie Shonk   •  04/22/2019   •  Filed in Negotiation Skills

hardball tactics in negotiation

Coke vs. Pepsi. Clinton vs. Trump. Apple vs. Samsung. The New York Yankees vs. the Boston Red Sox.

Whether we work in business, politics, sports, or another arena, our competitors sometimes turn into fierce rivals. In addition, many sales, legal, and financial firms structure jobs, incentives, and promotion systems in ways that pit employees against one … Read More 

Success & Messes: Nancy Pelosi’s next-to-last stand

PON Staff   •  03/31/2019   •  Filed in Negotiation Skills

On February 14, the White House announced that President Donald Trump would sign a federal budget deal that included only a fraction of the funds he had demanded for a border wall with Mexico and attempt to secure the remaining wall funding by declaring a national emergency.

For many congressional Democrats, Trump’s capitulation on the budget— following … Read More 

Would you like us to inform you when new posts become available?

We hate spam as much as you do. You have our promise not to sell or share your email address — ever! Please read our privacy policy.