Power Asymmetry and the Principal Agent Problem

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Power Asymmetry and Principal Agent Video

Downloadable Video Simulation from the Teaching Negotiation Resource Center

This video simulation on power asymmetry and principal agent dynamics by Professor Lawrence Susskind and Robert Wilkinson was designed to give students insights into the challenges surrounding difficult conversations, both with people across the table, as well as with people on their own side.

The Power Asymmetry and the Principal Agent Problem video scenario also focuses on negotiating with those who are more senior and who may exhibit nonconstructive behavior. The video can be used in variety of courses covering management, leadership, negotiation, communication, and leading diverse organizations. The video is only 15 minutes long and includes a three-minute introduction by Professor Susskind.

The video is separated into three sections, highlighting separate phases of a difficult conversation or negotiation:

  1. preparation and goal alignment,
  2. re-evaluation of mid-course strategy, and
  3. review and coaching.

Check out this brief preview of the video:

The full 15 minute video comes with teaching notes and the full simulation dialogue. The exchange was designed to bring numerous concepts “to life” on the screen, provoke debate, facilitate small group discussion and spark individual reflection.

Key concepts embedded in the dialogue include:

  • Managing the tension between principals and agents (the “principal- agent problem”).
  • Handling Difficult Conversations
  • Coaching as a Managerial Responsibility
  • The “Dealmaking Mindset” vs. the “Implementation Mindset”
  • Dealing with Power Asymmetries
  • Influencing Without Authority
  • The “Fixed Mindset” vs. the “Growth Mindset”

Download the Power Asymmetry and the Principal Agent Problem video from the Teaching Negotiation Resource Center (TNRC) today.

This simulation pairs well with the book Negotiating on Behalf of Others: Advice to Lawyers, Business Executives, Sports Agents, Diplomats, Politicians, and Everyone Else by Robert Mnookin and Lawrence Susskind, in which the authors outline a framework for understanding the complexity and effects of negotiating on behalf of others and explores how current negotiation theory can be modified to account for negotiation agents. 


Take your training to the next level with the TNRC

The Teaching Negotiation Resource Center offers a wide range of effective teaching materials, including

TNRC negotiation exercises and teaching materials are designed for educational purposes. They are used in college classroom settings or corporate training settings; used by mediators and facilitators seeking to introduce their clients to a process or issue; and used by individuals who want to enhance their negotiation skills and knowledge.

Negotiation exercises and role-play simulations introduce participants to new negotiation and dispute resolution tools, techniques and strategies. Our videos, books, case studies, and periodicals are also a helpful way of introducing students to key concepts while addressing the theory and practice of negotiation and conflict management.

Which negotiation exercises have helped you? Let us know in the comments.

Check out all that the TNRC has in store >>

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