Business and Commercial Dispute Negotiation Role-Play:

Tendley Contract

Two-party integrative contract negotiation between a computer consultant and a school district representative at an apparent impasse over different expectations over cost of services

Please note: you must order multiple copies in order to run this simulation. You should order a copy for every person participating in the simulation.

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SCENARIO:

A school district and a computer consultant are negotiating a potential contract for repair of the school district’s failed computer network. Both parties are eager to work with each other: the consultant’s qualifications appear perfect for the school district’s needs, and the school district would help the consultant connect with additional governmental clients. After a fair amount of negotiation, however, the parties find themselves at an impasse: the consultant’s bid (which the consultant feels is very low) is considerably higher than the school’s budget for this project. The consultant and a school representative have agreed to meet one last time in an effort to salvage the deal.

This simulation happens to involve a consulting contract, but the negotiation lessons are generic. The exercise can be used simply to illustrate the importance of the creative, option-generating aspect of negotiation. More importantly, it can also be used as the principal vehicle for presenting integrative theory more broadly.

 

MECHANICS:

This case can be prepared and conducted quickly. Allow 5-15 minutes for preparation, 10-30 minutes for negotiation, and 20-45 minutes for debriefing.

 

MAJOR LESSONS:

  • This exercise is an excellent vehicle for comparing interest-based negotiation and positional bargaining. Conventional offer/counteroffer positional bargaining will almost always fail in this case.
  • Joint problem-solving and creative option generation can help overcome an apparent negotiation impasse.
  • Creative option generation can involve rescoping the task, rescoping the time frame, and trading on different priorities, among other possibilities.

 

TEACHING MATERIALS INCLUDE:

Confidential Instructions for:

  • Representative for the Tendley school district
  • The consultant

 

Teacher’s Package includes:

  • All of the above
  • Teaching Note (English Version only)

 

PROCESS THEMES:

Breaking impasses, creating options, identifying interests, transforming problems from zero-sum to non-zero-sum, mutual gains, linkage to other possible deals, building a long-term relationship.

 

ENHANCED VERSION AVAILABLE:

A digitally enhanced version of this simulation is available through the iDecisionGames platform and includes the following features:

  • An Instructor’s Guide summarizing the negotiation concepts covered in the simulation, a quick review of simulation logistics, and a ready-to-use set of debriefing slides;
  • Highlights from background readings that will help both students and instructors gain a better understanding of negotiation concepts and methods covered in the simulation;
  • Pre- and post-simulation questionnaires instructors can use gauge each student’s grasp of the core concepts before and after participating in the simulation;
  • PowerPoint slides that introduce key concepts before the simulation and highlight lessons for debriefing;
  • Real time, interactive, data analytics provided via the iDecisionGames platform.

To order the Tendley Enhanced Package click here.

 

Tendley Contract Attributes

Time required:
30 minutes – 1 hour
Number of participants:
2
Teams involved:
No
Agent present:
Non-lawyer
Neutral third party present:
None
Scoreable:
No
Teaching notes available:
Yes
Non-English version available:
Portuguese, Spanish, Russian

PON Teaching Negotiation Resource Center

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Soft copy vs. hard copy

You may order this role simulation in either soft copy (electronic) or hard copy (paper) format. If you select the soft copy option, you will receive an e-mail with a URL (website address) from which you may download an electronic file in Adobe Acrobat PDF format. You will have one week to download your materials from when you receive the email. You are then only authorized to use, print, or share the materials as many times as the number of copies you purchase. The TNRC charges for use of this simulation on a per-participant basis. Therefore, you must purchase a separate copy of this simulation for each person who will be participating, regardless of the number of roles in the simulation. You will only receive a link to one electronic file, which includes all general instructions, confidential instructions, and any teaching notes for the simulation. You should separate out the instructions before distributing to participants.

If you select the hard copy option, you will receive paper copies of this role simulation via the shipping method you select.

For additional information about the soft copy option, please visit our FAQ section, or contact the PON Teaching Negotiation Resource Center at tnrc@law.harvard.edu or 800-258-4406 (within the U.S.) or 301-528-2676 (outside the U.S.).

Please note: At the present time, Teaching Negotiation Resource Center soft copies are compatible with the following versions of the Adobe Acrobat Reader: English, German, French, Spanish, Swedish, Portuguese, Japanese, and Korean. If you have a different version of the Acrobat Reader, you may wish to download one of these at http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep2.html, or contact the PON Teaching Negotiation Resource Center at tnrc@law.harvard.edu, 800-258-4406 (within the U.S.), or 301-528-2676 (outside the U.S.) for further assistance. This restriction does not apply to the freely available Teacher’s Package Review Copies.

Ordering a single copy for review

If you wish to review the materials for a particular role simulation to decide whether you’d like to use it, a PDF, or soft copy, version of the Teacher’s Package for the simulation is available as a free download from the description page of most role simulations and case studies. All Teacher’s Packages include copies of all participant materials. In addition, some Teacher’s Packages (but not all) include additional teaching materials such as teaching notes or overhead masters.

Ordering copies for multiple participants

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 “Quantity.” There is no need to calculate how many of each role is required.

If you are ordering hard copies, 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 “Quantity.” 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.