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.

The Program on Negotiation’s Executive Education negotiation training programs include Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems, the Harvard Negotiation Master Class, and the Harvard Mediation Intensive.

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
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Emotion in Negotiations: How to Detect Sincerity at the Bargaining Table

PON Staff   •  03/21/2016   •  Filed in Negotiation Skills

Following the British Petroleum oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in the spring of 2010, some media observers criticized President Barack Obama for seeming to be emotionally detached. Obama ultimately did display anger about the oil spill in a televised interview, only to be further critiqued on the grounds that his anger did not … Learn More About This Program

Top 10 Best Negotiations of 2014: Negotiation Case Studies Drawn from Negotiation Examples in Real Life

Katie Shonk   •  03/10/2016   •  Filed in Negotiation Skills

Rather than unparalleled triumphs and victories, many of the 10 Best Negotiations of 2014 share a common theme of “making the best of a bad situation.” From climate change to Congress to Cuba, negotiators often found themselves trying to claw their way out of the darkness and into the light. Here are 10 negotiations that … Learn More About This Program

Negotiation Skills for Resolving International Conflicts

PON Staff   •  03/08/2016   •  Filed in Negotiation Skills

What are the essential skills a negotiator needs to resolve conflicts abroad? How do international conflicts differ from domestic conflicts? What issues specific to bargaining across borders emerges in intercultural negotiations? In this article we explore ways in which negotiators can develop bargaining skills to overcome any barriers to communication they may encounter in negotiations … Learn More About This Program

Top 10 Best Pieces of Negotiation Advice of 2015

Katie Shonk   •  01/11/2016   •  Filed in Negotiation Skills

Across politics, business, entertainment, and sports, negotiators reminded us that collaboration and close attention are needed to resolve disputes and reach innovative deals.

10. Searching the haystack. As reported this year, an unexpected break came in the U.S. Department of Justice’s investigation of large U.S. banks’ role in the 2008 subprime mortgage crisis after an … Read Top 10 Best Pieces of Negotiation Advice of 2015

What You Can Learn from Putin’s Negotiation Style

PON Staff   •  01/08/2016   •  Filed in Negotiation Skills

In January 2015 the Negotiation Briefings newsletter featured an article, “Dealing with difficult people – even when you don’t want to,” discussing the impasse NATO leaders had reached with Russian President Vladimir Putin with regards to his unilateral actions in the Crimea. Aside from exhibiting obstinacy in the face of a unified European front, Putin … Learn More About This Program

In Negotiation, Display Anger with Caution

PON Staff   •  12/09/2015   •  Filed in Negotiation Skills

Virtually all of us experience feelings of anger from time to time during our negotiations. Past research findings reassured business negotiators that their displays of anger could benefit them by conveying toughness and motivating their counterparts to make concessions. But a new research study by professors Hajo Adam of Rice University and Jeanne M. Brett … Read In Negotiation, Display Anger with Caution

Top Worst Negotiation Case Studies: Real Life Examples of Bargaining Gone Wrong

Katie Shonk   •  11/29/2015   •  Filed in Negotiation Skills


Sometimes negotiators care so much about the issues at stake that they mistake compromise for surrender. Sometimes they’re so confident things will go their way they don’t try hard enough. Our list of the 10 Worst Negotiations of 2014 includes talks that failed for one or both of these reasons, as well as for numerous … Learn More About This Program

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