Good For You, Great For MeFinding the Trading Zone and Winning at Win-Win Negotiation

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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.

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You’ve read the classic on win-win negotiating Getting to Yes… but so have they, the folks you are now negotiating with. How can you get a leg up … and win?

“Win-win” negotiation is an appealing idea on an intellectual level: Find the best way to convince the other side to accept a mutually beneficial outcome, and then everyone gets their fair share. The reality, though, is that people want more than their fair share; they want to win. Tell your boss that you’ve concocted a deal that gets your company a piece of the pie, and the reaction is likely to be: “Maybe we need to find someone harder-nosed than you who knows how to win. We want the whole pie, not just a slice.” However, to return to an earlier era before “win-win” negotiation was in fashion and seek simply to dominate or bully opponents into submission would be a step in the wrong direction—and a public relations disaster.

By showing how to win at win-win negotiating, Lawrence Susskind provides the operational advice you need to satisfy the interests of your back table—the people to whom you report. He also shows you how to deal with irrational people, whose vocabulary seems limited to “no,” or with the proverbial 900-pound gorilla. He explains how to find trades that create much more value than either you or your opponent thought possible. His brilliant concept of “the trading zone”—the space where you can create deals that are “good for them but great for you,” while still maintaining trust and keeping relationships intact—is a fresh way to re-think your approach to negotiating. The outcome is often the best of both possible worlds: You claim a disproportionate share of the value you’ve created while your opponents still look good to the people to whom they report.

Whether the venue is business, a family dispute, international relations, or a tradeoff that has to be made between the environment and jobs, Susskind provides a breakthrough in how to both think about, and engage in, productive negotiations.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Lawrence E. Susskind is Ford Professor of Urban and Environmental Planning at MIT, President of the Consensus Building Institute, and one of America’s most experienced public dispute mediators.

PON Teaching Negotiation Resource Center

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If you wish to order multiple copies of a role simulation for use in a course or workshop, simply enter the total number of participants in the box next to “Participant Copies.” There is no need to calculate how many of each role is required; the Teaching Negotiation Resource Center will calculate the appropriate numbers of each role to provide, based on the total number of participants. For example, if you wish to order a 2-party role simulation for use with a class of 30 students, you would enter “30” in the box next to “Participant Copies.” You then would receive 15 copies of one role and 15 copies of the other role, for use with your 30 participants. As another example, if you ordered 30 participant copies of a 6-party role simulation, you would receive 5 copies of each role.

In the event that the number of participant copies you order is not evenly divisible by the number of roles in the simulation, you will receive extra copies of one or more roles. Participants receiving the extra roles may partner with other participants playing the same role, thus negotiating as a team. So, for instance, if you ordered 31 copies of a 2-party role simulation, you would receive 15 copies of the first role and 16 copies of the second role. One of the participants playing the second role would partner with another participant playing that same role, and the two would negotiate as a team.