Learn how to negotiate like a diplomat, think on your feet like an improv performer, and master job offer negotiation like a professional athlete when you download a copy of our FREE special report, Negotiation Skills: Negotiation Strategies and Negotiation Techniques to Help You Become a Better Negotiator, from the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School.


bargaining table

What is the “Bargaining Table”?

Whether you’re at the bargaining table conducting business negotiations or working through personal disputes with a friend, the following negotiating skills and techniques can help you come to an agreement.

The “bargaining table” is a way to refer to the time and place that parties come together to handle a negotiation. It doesn’t need to be a physical “table”, rather it refers to the act of getting a deal done.

Coming together with negotiating counterparts at the “bargaining table” is a situation fraught with potential mishaps, all of which are compounded by the pressure to get the best deal a negotiator can for herself or her organization.

Before you get to the bargaining table, however, remember that, even when not based in reality, the expectation that someone is “tough” or “cooperative” becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. When you approach an allegedly tough competitor with suspicion and guardedness, he is likely to absorb these expectations and become more a more competitive negotiator. All the more reason to cultivate a cooperative reputation from the start and strive to maintain it at all costs.

Let’s take a look at three guidelines to help you make the most of the power you have when you sit down at the bargaining table.

  1. Don’t squander your negotiating power. Objective power doesn’t always translate into strong outcomes. In fact, the greater the perceived power differential in a negotiation, the more likely counterparts will be to view an upcoming negotiation as a competition rather than as a collaborative enterprise.
  2. Don’t let a lack of power get to you. A lack of objective power can harm people’s sense of psychological power, with detrimental effects on their outcomes. However, weaker parties may be able to bolster their performance and outcomes at the bargaining table by thinking about times when they had power in a negotiation.
  3. Do take practical steps to boost your power. Even as you work on enhancing your psychological power, there are steps you can take to improve your actual power at the bargaining table.

You can improve your skills at the bargaining table by downloading a complimentary copy of our special report, Negotiation Skills: Negotiation Strategies and Negotiation Techniques to Help You Become a Better Negotiator, from Harvard Law School, right now! We will send you a download link to your copy of the report and notify you by email when we post new business negotiation advice and information.

The following items are tagged bargaining table:

Contract Negotiations and Business Communication: How to Write an Iron-Clad Contract

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

In contract negotiations, writing a contract that both encapsulates the negotiated agreement but also incorporates future elements such as the business relationship and the sustainability of the agreement can be a daunting task for even the most experienced negotiators. Executives often leave the legal issues surrounding their deals to their attorneys. While this division of … Read More 

Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems

Posted by & filed under Negotiation and Leadership.

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THREE-DAY COURSE | April 4–6, 2022 Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems BONUS DAY | April 7, 2022 Difficult Conversations: How to Discuss What Matters Most

Three-Day Program Agenda Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems DAY 1: Monday, April 4, 2022UNDERSTANDING KEY NEGOTIATION CONCEPTS MORNING: Negotiation Fundamentals—Key Concepts and Core Vocabulary 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. … Read More 

Negotiation and Leadership March and April 2022 Brochure

Posted by & filed under Free Report.

Over the years thousands of professionals have participated in negotiation programs at the Program on Negotiation (PON) at Harvard Law School. And after a few months or years of putting their negotiation skills and techniques to work, participants inevitably ask us, what’s next? The Program on Negotiation is pleased to announce the Negotiation Master Class, … Read More 

MESO: Make Multiple Equivalent Simultaneous Offers to Create Value in Dealmaking Table

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

MESO negotiation, a negotiation strategy for creating value with a counterpart who may be reluctant to negotiate, allows negotiators to propose multiple offers without signaling commitment or preference for any one option. Business negotiators that practice integrative negotiation strategies often complain that although they try to focus on creating value, they run into far too many difficult … Read More 

Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems

Posted by & filed under Negotiation and Leadership.

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THREE-DAY COURSE | March 14-16, 2022 Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems

Three-Day Program Agenda Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems DAY 1: Monday, March 14, 2022UNDERSTANDING KEY NEGOTIATION CONCEPTS MORNING: Negotiation Fundamentals—Key Concepts and Core Vocabulary 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. ET Led by Guhan Subramanian

Negotiation is a high-transaction-cost activity, and the side that is … Read More 

Negotiation Master Class Fall 2021 Program Guide

Posted by & filed under Free Report.

Over the years thousands of professionals have participated in negotiation programs at the Program on Negotiation (PON) at Harvard Law School. And after a few months or years of putting their negotiation skills and techniques to work, participants inevitably ask us, what’s next? The Program on Negotiation is pleased to announce the Negotiation Master Class, … Read More 

For Greater Value Creation, Look Beyond Your BATNA

Posted by & filed under BATNA.

For value creation in negotiation, you may need to look beyond your greatest source of power. You may have learned— perhaps in this newsletter or in Roger Fisher, William Ury, and Bruce Patton’s landmark negotiation book Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In (Penguin, 1991)—that your most powerful asset is often a strong BATNA, or … Read More 

Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems

Posted by & filed under Negotiation and Leadership.

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THREE-DAY COURSE | December 6–8, 2021 Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems BONUS DAY | December 9, 2021 The Art of Saying No: Save the Deal, Save the Relationship, and Still Say No

Three-Day Program Agenda Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems DAY 1:  Monday, December 6, 2021UNDERSTANDING KEY NEGOTIATION CONCEPTS MORNING: Negotiation Fundamentals—Key Concepts … Read More 

Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems

Posted by & filed under Negotiation and Leadership.

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THREE-DAY COURSE | October 25–27, 2021 Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems BONUS DAY | October 28, 2021 The 4P Framework for Strategic Negotiation and Leadership

Three-Day Program Agenda Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems DAY 1:  Monday, October 25, 2021UNDERSTANDING KEY NEGOTIATION CONCEPTS MORNING: Negotiation Fundamentals—Key Concepts and Core Vocabulary 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. … Read More 

Business Negotiation Skills to Curb Your Overconfidence

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

To avoid the pitfalls of overconfidence, you need a clear understanding of how overconfidence is likely to affect your judgments and decisions (and those of your counterparts) at the bargaining table. Fortunately, new research suggests exactly when to expect overconfidence and offers insight into how you can prevent it from getting you into trouble in … Read More 

Harvard Negotiation Master Class: Advanced Strategies for Experienced Negotiators – November 16-18, 2021

Posted by & filed under Harvard Negotiation Master Class.

Strictly limited to 60 participants who have completed a prior course in negotiation, this first-of-its-kind program offers unprecedented access to experts from Harvard Law School, Harvard Business School, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology—all of whom are committed to delivering a transformational learning experience. By working closely with them, you will: … Read More 

How to Resolve Cultural Conflict: Overcoming Cultural Barriers at the Negotiation Table

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After recently losing an important deal in India, a business negotiator learned that her counterpart felt as if she had been rushing through the talks. The business negotiator thought she was being efficient with their time. In this useful cross-cultural conflict negotiation example, how should this negotiator improve her negotiation skills? … Read More 

Negotiation Workshop: Strategies, Tools, and Skills for Success

Posted by & filed under Harvard Negotiation Institute, Harvard Negotiation Institute (Five-Day Programs).

Course Dates: This course is closed Turn disputes into deals. Transform deals into better deals. Resolve intractable problems. Negotiating effectively requires the ability to change the game – moving away from conflict and toward collaboration. In this intensive, interactive program, you acquire a proven framework for maximizing the value of your negotiation. … Read More 

Top Ten Posts About Conflict Resolution

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Conflict resolution is the process of resolving a dispute or a conflict by meeting at least some of each side’s needs and addressing their interests. Conflict resolution sometimes requires both a power-based and an interest-based approach, such as the simultaneous pursuit of litigation (the use of legal power) and negotiation (attempts to reconcile each party’s … Read More 

The New Conflict Management: Effective Conflict Resolution Strategies to Avoid Litigation

Posted by & filed under Free Report.

This report reveals how wise negotiators extract unexpected value using an indirect approach to conflict management. An aggressive management style can set you up for repeated failure. Direct conflict management approaches can be overly combative and counter-productive. Experienced negotiators know that compromise seldom succeeds. Win/lose is really lose/lose. The best negotiation strategy results in … Read More 

Top 10 Negotiation Skills You Must Learn to Succeed

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Increasingly, business negotiators recognize that the most effective bargainers are skilled at both creating value and claiming value—that is, they both collaborate and compete. The following 10 negotiation skills will help you succeed at integrative negotiation. … Read More 

Harborco: Role-Play Simulation

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Harborco is a consortium of development, industrial, and shipping concerns that are eager to proceed with the building of a new port, but face hurdles and potential opposition as they advance through the licensing process. The Federal Licensing Agency would like to see them work with other stakeholders to develop a project that is acceptable … Read More 

3 Negotiation Strategies for Conflict Resolution

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When a dispute flares up and conflict resolution is required, the outcome can be sadly predictable: the conflict escalates, with each side blaming the other in increasingly strident terms. The dispute may end up in litigation, and the relationship may be forever damaged. … Read More 

Mediation Secrets for Better Business Negotiations: Top Techniques from Mediation Training Experts

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In this Special Report, the experts and editors from Harvard’s Program on Negotiation offer a sampling of advice from past issues of Negotiation to help you learn the techniques you need to resolve your disputes through mediation. You will learn to select the right dispute-resolution process, choose a mediator with appropriate expertise, learn the steps your … Read More 

Win-Win Negotiation Strategies for Rebuilding a Relationship

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When negotiators come together after a period of mutual mistrust, it can be difficult for each side to reconcile their grievances with the other. Here are some strategies that others have used to bring bargaining counterparts together even after a long, contentious period of silence. … Read More 

Managing Difficult Negotiators

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In negotiation, we are often confronted with the task of dealing with difficult people—those who seem to prefer to set up roadblocks rather than break down walls, or who choose to take hardline stances rather than seeking common ground. If you’re skilled in BATNA negotiations, you’ll have an easier time dealing with such people. … Read More 

Training Women to Be Leaders: Negotiating Skills for Success

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In this Special Report, we offer advice selected from the Negotiation newsletter to help women develop the negotiation skills essential to career advancement, and to help organizations encourage women employees to be more effective at the bargaining table. You will learn what hold women back from asking for more, the link between gender and flexible … Read More 

The Opposite of Autocratic Leadership Styles

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While the advantages and disadvantages of leadership styles are not always readily apparent, one thing is certain – being decisive while avoiding autocratic leadership tactics is necessary for successful leaders and negotiators alike. Navigating these treacherous waters can be extraordinarily challenging, but it can also give rise to creative decisions that help resolve disagreements in … Read More 

Dear Negotiation Coach: What is the Secret to Negotiating with Kids Successfully?

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Some of our toughest negotiations happen away from the bargaining table. In fact, they may happen closer to our dinner table. We recently received a question from a reader about negotiation with kids, and asked Program on Negotiation’s Katie Shonk for some insight. Q: I avoid using hardball tactics in my professional negotiations since they often … Read More 

Business Skills: Make Concessions Strategically in Negotiation

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Business negotiators generally understand that to get what they want from another party or parties, they will have to give something away. But what concessions should you offer in the deal-making process, and what form should they take? New research on concession making in negotiation offers tips to add to your repertoire of business skills. Finding … Read More 

Negotiation Skills: Building Trust in Negotiations

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Trust in negotiations may develop naturally over time, but negotiators rarely have the luxury of letting nature take its course. Thus it sometimes seems easiest to play it safe with cautious deals involving few tradeoffs, few concessions, and little information sharing between parties. But avoiding risk can mean missing out on significant opportunities. For this reason, … Read More 

Ask A Negotiation Expert: Rebel Negotiation with Professor Francesca Gino

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In her book, Rebel Talent: Why It Pays to Break the Rules at Work and in Life (Dey Street Books, 2018), Francesca Gino, the Tandon Family Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School, argues that a healthy dose of rebellion can deepen our engagement and help us meet our most important goals. We asked … Read More 

The Star Wars Negotiations and Trust at the Negotiation Table

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What is negotiation in business? Negotiation research has identified it as a process of building trust and negotiation tactics for building trust at the bargaining table have proven effective in helping negotiators create, and claim, more value out of dealmaking scenarios. … Read More 

Alternative Dispute Resolution In-House: Mediation, Arbitration, or Med-Arb?

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The three most common alternative dispute resolution techniques are mediation, arbitration, and med-arb. However, it can often be difficult to determine which method is best for your particular situation. Here are four possible objectives you may have as a leader in your organization and suggestions for which type of ADR may be most appropriate in that … Read More 

Building Coalitions: Apple and the Art of Persuasion

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Whether you have one of its ubiquitous products or even its rivals offerings, you most certainly have heard of Apple, the United States electronics giant whose phoenix-like rise to the top of the business world has inspired legions of fans and detractors alike. … Read More 

Dealmaking: Relationship Rules for Dealmakers

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Here are some concrete guidelines for fostering a strong relationship between deal making partners, drawn from The Global Negotiator: Making, Managing, and Mending Deals Around the World in the 21st Century, by Tufts University professor Jeswald W. Salacuse: … Read More 

Negotiation Research Examines Ethics in Negotiating

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Lack of transparency regarding negotiations between hospitals and the insurers known as preferred provider organizations, or PPOs, is a key contributor to spiraling health-care costs in the United States, back in a 2013 article in the New York Times. This topic has many questioning ethics in negotiating within the healthcare industry. The problem starts with the … Read More 

5 Common Negotiation Mistakes and How You Can Avoid Them

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Sometimes our negotiation mistakes are glaring: We accidentally reveal our bottom line, criticize the other party when patience was warranted, or get our numbers mixed up. More often, though, our negotiation mistakes are invisible: We get a perfectly good deal, but are unaware that we could have gotten a better one if we hadn’t succumbed … Read More 

A Token Concession: In Negotiation, the Gift that Keeps on Giving

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When making concessions in negotiation, we tend to assume that a concession must really cost us, financially or otherwise, for the other side to take notice and give us what we want. But in fact, we can often make real headway toward our negotiation goals by giving a token concession—a concession that costs us little, … Read More 

Dispute Resolution, NHL style

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The deal suggests a valuable way for business negotiators in all realms to break through thorny disputes: expand your focus by looking for tradeoffs that cut across time periods. … Read More 

Emotion and the Art of Business Negotiations

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The sale of Picasso’s works by his heirs is fraught with negative emotion. How do negative emotions impact negotiation and behavior at the bargaining table? This article offers negotiation skills insights into how to counter or prevent negative emotions in negotiation. … Read More 

Collective Bargaining Negotiations and the Risk of Strikes

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Collective bargaining negotiations help level the playing field between individual employees and management by enabling employees to organize and find strength in numbers. But when collective bargaining negotiations fall apart, the result can be a devastating strike. … Read More 

Developing Negotiation Skills for Integrative Negotiations – Does Personality Matter?

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Imagine that after some negative experiences at the bargaining table or if you are frustrated in your efforts to improve your negotiation skills, you’ve started to worry that you simply don’t have the right personality to be a great negotiator let alone a value-creating, integrative negotiations expert. The other party always seems to get the … Read More 

Fairness in Negotiation

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Imagine that you and your business partner agree to sell your company. You end up getting an offer that pleases you both, so now you face the enviable task of splitting up the rewards. How do you ensure that there is fairness in negotiation? … Read More 

International Negotiations and Agenda Setting: Controlling the Flow of the Negotiation Process

Posted by & filed under Uncategorized.

When two groups are embroiled in a conflict, it is common for the party with less power to have difficulty convincing the more powerful party to sit down at the negotiating table in international negotiations. In such cases, the more powerful player is likely to resist the notion of shaking up the status quo—and thus … Read More 

Self-Fulfilling Prophecies and Power in Negotiation

Posted by & filed under Uncategorized.

When you expect people to be competitive, it’s not only your own behavior that changes. You also set up a self-fulfilling prophecy, such that your expectations about the other side’s behavior lead him to behave in ways that confirm your expectations. … Read More 

Why First Impressions Matter in Negotiation

Posted by & filed under Uncategorized.

Even when not based in reality, the expectation that someone is “tough” or “cooperative” becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy at the bargaining table. When you approach an allegedly tough competitor with suspicion and guardedness, he is likely to absord these expectations and become more competitive. … Read More 

Power in Negotiation: The Impact on Negotiators and the Negotiation Process

Posted by & filed under Uncategorized.

According to Dacher Keltner of the University of California at Berkeley and his colleagues, power in negotiation affects two primary neurological regulators of behavior: the behavioral approach system and the behavioral inhibition system. Powerful negotiators demonstrate “approach related” behaviors such as expressing positive moods and searching for rewards in their environment. … Read More 

Best Negotiation Books: A Negotiation Reading List

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Whether you are facing negotiations with Congress, colleagues, customers, or family members, the following negotiation books, published in recent years by experts from the Program on Negotiation, offer new perspectives on common negotiating dilemmas. … Read More 

Negotiation Skills: Threat Response at the Bargaining Table

Posted by & filed under Uncategorized.

When someone issues a threat or an ultimatum, take a step back and diagnose the problem. Consider how you would respond to threats and ultimatums such as these during negotiation. In the face of such tough talk, should you strike back with a counterthreat? Probably not. Because counterthreats raise the emotional temperature of a negotiation, … Read More 

Essential Negotiation Skills: Limiting Cognitive Bias in Negotiation

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In past articles, we have highlighted a variety of psychological biases that affect negotiators, many of which spring from a reliance on intuition, and may hinder integrative negotiation. Of course, negotiators are not always affected by bias; we often think systematically and clearly at the bargaining table. Most negotiators believe they are capable of distinguishing … Read More 

Writing the Negotiated Agreement

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Some negotiations end with a negotiated agreement that is a plan of action rather than a signed contract – for example, a plumber agrees to fix the tile damage caused by his work. Other negotiations wouldn’t be appropriate to commemorate in writing, such as how you and your spouse decide to discipline your young … Read More 

Do Attitudes in Negotiation Influence Results?

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Many people consider negotiations to be stressful and threatening. Others view them as challenges to be overcome. Do these different attitudes influence the outcomes that people reach? New research by professors Kathleen M. O’Connor of Cornell University and Josh A. Arnold of California State University sheds light on this important question. … Read More 

Finding Mutual Gains In “Non-Negotiation”

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The National Football League’s Pittsburgh Steelers faced a dilemma. Mid-contract, the team’s star wide receiver, Antonio Brown, asked the team to improve upon the six-year, $42.5 million deal they negotiated back in 2012. Brown had risen to become the best receiver in football and believed he was underpaid. … Read More 

Negotiation Team Strategy

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Some negotiations are simple enough to handle on our own, but those deals are increasingly rare in the business world. These days, to thrive in negotiation, you often need to be able to work effectively as part of a negotiation team. … Read More 

3 Types of Power in Negotiation

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Social psychologists have described different types of power that exist in society, and negotiators can leverage these types of power in negotiation as well. … Read More 

The Importance of a Relationship in Negotiation

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At the negotiation table, what’s the best way to uncover your negotiation counterpart’s hidden interests? Build a relationship in negotiation by asking questions, then listening carefully. Even if you have decided to make the first offer and are ready with a number of alternatives, you should always open by asking and listening to assess your … Read More 

What is Anchoring in Negotiation?

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Consider this anchoring bias example from Harvard Business School and Harvard Law School faculty member Guhan Subramanian. While running a negotiation simulation in one of his classes, Subramanian noticed that one student spent a considerable amount of time explaining why $10.69 per hour would be an impossible wage rate to offer the student’s counterpart. The … Read More 

How to Overcome Cultural Barriers in Negotiation

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Imagine that you’re the American representative of a U.S. food company, and you’re hoping to procure a new ingredient for several of your products from a German company. A representative from the company is flying in to meet with you. Do you expect your German counterpart to behave differently than the Americans you typically deal … Read More 

Dear Negotiation Coach: Am I Using Deceptive Tactics in Negotiation?

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Ethical negotiators try not to use deceptive tactics in negotiation situations. However, there’s one negotiation technique that may not feel deceptive, but it can slip under the radar and cause problems later. We spoke with Francesca Gino, Tandon Family Professor of Business Administration, Negotiation, Organizations and Markets Unit at Harvard Business School. We asked her … Read More 

Best Negotiators in History: Nelson Mandela and His Negotiation Style

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The late Nelson Mandela will certainly be remembered as one of the best negotiators in history. He was clearly “the greatest negotiator of the twentieth century,” wrote Harvard Law School professor and Program on Negotiation Chairman Robert H. Mnookin in his seminal book, Bargaining with the Devil, When to Negotiate, When to Fight. … Read More 

What Is an Umbrella Agreement?

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Business negotiators tend to want the best of both worlds. When reaching an agreement, they want to pin down parties’ respective rights and responsibilities, but they also want to retain the flexibility they need to deal with ever-changing business conditions. One solution to this apparent dilemma is to craft an umbrella agreement. … Read More 

The Negotiation Process in China

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With its booming economy and growing international consumer influence, the role of negotiation in international business is more important than ever and negotiation skills appropriate for China are in high-demand. Here are a few negotiation tips to help you successfully navigate your next round of business negotiations in China. … Read More 

Union Strikes and Dispute Resolution Strategies

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When a conflict looms, it can be tempting for each side to try to make unilateral decisions on key issues because of the belief that negotiations with the other side will be a dead end. This dispute resolution strategy may pay off in the short term, but it’s important to factor in the long-term costs … Read More 

Understanding Different Negotiation Styles

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In the business world, some negotiators always seem to get what they want, while others more often tend to come up short. What might make some people better negotiators than others? The answer may be in part that people bring different negotiation styles and strategies to the bargaining table, based on their different personalities, experiences, … Read More 

Emotional Triggers: How Emotions Affect Your Negotiating Ability

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Example of negotiation in daily life: Imagine you’re about to negotiate with a competing firm about a possible merger. You enter the conference room and find a reasonable and fair representative from the other company, someone you’ve reached mutually beneficial agreements with in the past. … Read More 

In the Negotiation Planning Process, to Capture the Force, be Patient

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Sometimes the negotiation planning process will take longer than expected to get the best results. On October 30, 2012, Robert A. Iger, CEO of the Walt Disney Company, announced that Disney was acquiring Lucasfilm, the film-production company known primarily for the spectacularly successful Star Wars film franchise. Following lengthy negotiations, George Lucas, Lucasfilm’s founder and sole … Read More 

The Importance of Relationship Building in China

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Although most Americans treat those they know differently than they treat strangers, Chinese relationship building towards insiders and outsiders tends to be more extreme than in the United States – and therefore more important in negotiations in China than many Americans understand. … Read More 

Team Building Using Negotiation Skills

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To avoid conveying weakness to the other side, rather than calling for a break at the first sign of trouble, some negotiation teams devise secret signals they can use to bring wayward members in line—for instance, someone might stretch out her arms to communicate to another member that he’s getting off track. … Read More 

The Pitfalls of Negotiations Over Email

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Negotiation research suggests that email often poses more problems than solutions when it comes to relationships, information exchange, and outcomes in conflict resolution negotiation scenarios. First, establishing social rapport via email can be challenging. The lack of nonverbal cues and the dearth of social norms regarding its use can cause negotiators to be impolite and … Read More 

Win Win Negotiations: Can’t Beat Them? Join a Coalition.

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This negotiation case study demonstrates the power of coalitions to achieve objectives at the bargaining table. How can negotiators cooperate with bargaining counterparts to create value for both sides? Here is the strategy used by Wyoming ranchers to achieve just that. … Read More 

Why is Negotiation Important: Mediation in Transactional Negotiations

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We generally think of mediation as a dispute-resolution device. Federal mediators intervene when collective bargaining breaks down. Diplomats are sometimes called in to mediate conflicts between nations. So-called multi-door courthouses encourage litigants to mediate before incurring the costs – and risks – of going to trial. … Read More 

Mediation and the Conflict Resolution Process

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It’s often the case that when two people or organizations try to resolve a dispute by determining who is right, they get stuck. That’s why so many disputes end up in court. There is a better way to resolve your dispute: by hiring an expert mediator who focuses not on rights but on interests—the needs, … Read More 

Salary Negotiation: How to Ask for a Higher Salary

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For a new employee, salary negotiation skills can be the most important and the most intimidating, but the most important, of difficult conversations to have at the beginning of your career. A new employee, successfully negotiating a salary offer up by $5,000 could make a huge difference over the course of her career. … Read More 

The Importance of Communication in Negotiations: Preparing Your Negotiating Team

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When a team is preparing for a critical negotiation, members need to appoint a leader, allocate roles and responsibilities, and discuss their at-the-table strategy. Another key objective that teams sometimes fail to discuss is the importance of staying “on message” – that is, making sure that statements by individual members don’t contradict the group’s agreed-upon … Read More 

Take your BATNA to the Next Level

Posted by & filed under BATNA.

If your current negotiation reaches an impasse, what’s your best outside option? Most seasoned negotiators understand the value of evaluating their BATNA, or best alternative to a negotiated agreement, a concept that Roger Fisher, William Ury, and Bruce Patton introduced in their seminal book, Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In (Penguin, 1991, second … Read More 

Mediation: Sitting Down at the Table

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One of the central skills of a mediator is the ability to solve problems. And while problem solving skills may lead to successfully negotiated agreements between disputing parties, an effective mediator also has to get each side to agree to sit down at the bargaining table in the first place. … Read More 

Negotiation Ethics: Dealing with Deception at the Bargaining Table

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In his book Bargaining for Advantage: Negotiation Strategies for Reasonable People (Penguin, 2006), G. Richard Shell analyzes this story from Nancy Griffin and Kim Masters’s book Hit & Run: How Jon Peters and Peter Guber Took Sony for a Ride in Hollywood (Simon & Schuster, 1996) as an example of the deceptive tactics negotiators sometimes … Read More 

Types of Conflict in Business Negotiation—and How to Avoid Them

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Conflict in business negotiation is common, but it doesn’t have to be that way. There are steps we can take to avoid types of conflict and misunderstandings. Often, it helps to analyze the unique causes of conflict in particular negotiation situations. Here, we look at three frequent types of conflict in business negotiations and offer … Read More 

In Business Negotiations, Eat Before You Negotiate

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When preparing for your next business negotiation, you may want to strategize not only about what you’ll put on the bargaining table, but also how much food you’ll put in your belly beforehand. That’s the message of new research that Cornell University professor Emily Zitek and Dartmouth College professor Alexander Jordan presented at the annual … Read More 

Are Salary Negotiation Skills Different for Men and Women?

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Most negotiators don’t engage in the kinds of high-stakes bargaining we read about in publications such as The Wall Street Journal and The Financial Times, but almost every negotiator will need advanced salary negotiation skills during the course of her career to deal with a scenario that is, in many ways, the definition of a … Read More 

Repairing Relationships Using Negotiation Skills

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Negotiation is not only something we do at work; often the toughest negotiations we encounter are in our personal lives. Some of the most successful negotiation examples of the power of negotiation skills in dispute resolution is when they repair relationships between friends. … Read More 

Value Claiming in Negotiation

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In most negotiations, we face two goals: claiming value and creating value. Value can be defined as anything you would like to get out a negotiation, whether it be more dollars, a consulting contract, a new rug, an end to conflict, and so on. … Read More 

What is Distributive Negotiation and Five Proven Strategies

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Most negotiations call for very different, even opposing, skills: collaboration and competition. To get a great deal, we typically must work with others to find new sources of value while also competing with them to claim as much of that value for ourselves. Before mastering the intricacies of value creation in negotiation, it helps to … Read More 

Negotiation in Business: Ethics, Bias, and Bargaining in Good Faith

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As we’ve discussed in previous articles about negotiation examples in business, a negotiator’s beliefs concerning negotiation ethics are affected by cognitive biases. You probably can recall times when a negotiating opponent made what appeared to be a blatant misstatement. If you’re like most people, you assumed the person was lying to gain an advantage. … Read More 

Negotiators: Resist Vividness Bias in Negotiations

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Vividness bias is the tendency to overweight the vivid and prestigious attributes of a decision, such as salary or an employer’s status, and underweight less impressive issues, such as location or rapport with colleagues. Let’s talk about a clear vividness bias example from 2015 in Major League Baseball. For the New York Mets, it was hard … Read More 

Conflict Management Skills When Dealing with an Angry Public

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When negotiators get along well, creative problem solving is easy. When they become upset, however, they seem to forget everything they know about finding joint gain, to the point of giving up tangible wins simply to inflict losses on the other party. This is especially true in high-profile negotiations that turn nasty. … Read More 

What Leads to Renegotiation?

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Renegotiation is generally triggered for one of two reasons: an imperfect contract or changed circumstances. The goal of any written contract is to express the parties’ full understanding of their deal. … Read More 

Q&A with William Ury, author of Getting To Yes With Yourself

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Are You Your Own Worst Enemy? We interviewed William Ury, co-founder of the Program on Negotiation, one of the world’s leading experts on negotiation, and bestselling author of Getting to Yes and Getting Past No, about his book, Getting To Yes With Yourself. Great negotiators know that the path to resolution is not always linear but rather … Read More 

Distributive Bargaining Strategies

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Wise negotiators recognize the value of both collaborating and competing at the bargaining table. They look for ways to increase the pie of value for all parties, often by identifying differences across issues and making tradeoffs. And they also rely on distributive bargaining strategies to try to claim as much of that larger pie for … Read More 

Bargaining for a New Car: Real World Negotiations Examples

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According to a recent report from NPR Morning Edition’s Sonari Glinton, women not only negotiate harder bargains than men when it comes to vehicle purchases, but also they do more extensive preparatory work. Conventional wisdom has always placed the automobile in the realm of the masculine, but the emergence of the prepared and educated female … Read More 

Using Body Language in Negotiation

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Negotiation experts typically advise us to meet with our counterparts in person whenever possible rather than relying on the telephone or Internet. As convenient as electronic media may be, they lack the visual cues that help convey valuable information and forge connections in face-to-face talks. Without access to gestures and facial expressions, those who negotiate … Read More 

The Right Negotiation Environment: Your Place or Mine?

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Everyone knows the three rules of real estate: “Location! Location! Location!” When it comes to making deals, choosing the right negotiation environment can be just as important. The location you select can dramatically affect the ensuing process and, ultimately, the end result. In deal making, the answer to the question “Your place or mine?” is … Read More 

Business Negotiations: How to Improve Your Reputation at the Bargaining Table

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In multi-issue business negotiations, research suggests that the advantage goes to negotiators with a reputation for collaboration rather than competition. In a series of studies by Catherine H. Tinsley and Kathleen O’Connor, participants were told they would be negotiating with someone who had either a tough reputation, a cooperative reputation, or an unknown reputation. Although … Read More 

How to Portray Confidence in Negotiation So You Don’t Look Desperate

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In our negotiations, we all regularly cope with counterparts who try too hard—such as salespeople who pester us with phone calls or show up at our office or home unannounced. Their desperation to reach a deal comes through loud and clear, making them seem not only annoying but also potentially ripe for exploitation. At the … Read More 

How Much Does Personality in Negotiation Matter?

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We tend to have strong intuitions about which personality traits help or hurt us in negotiation, but does research on the topic confirm our hunches? Does personality in negotiation matter? Before we explore this topic, please answer “True” or “False” in response to the following questions: 1. Extroverted negotiators tend to perform better than introverted negotiators. 2. Agreeable … Read More 

Cultural Barriers and Conflict Negotiation Strategies: Apple’s Apology in China

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When dealing with a difficult counterpart, it helps to take a conciliatory approach to the bargaining table. While apologies necessarily involve moments of vulnerability, they can also open doors to value creation and strengthen the relationship you have with your bargaining counterpart. Let’s look back at Apple’s apology in China for its maligned warranty policies … Read More 

Tired of Liars? Promote More Ethical Negotiation Behavior

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Promoting ethical negotiation is one of the steps we can take to reduce the odds that someone will try to deceive you, and is likely to be a more fruitful strategy than trying to improve your ability to detect lies. Negotiators tend to view lies on a spectrum ranging from marginally acceptable to egregious. Certain types … Read More 

Implicit and Explicit Bias: When Negotiators Discriminate Based on Race

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Implicit and explicit bias are common, whether the guilty parties are aware of it, or not.  On July 14, 2015, American Honda Finance Corporation (AHFC), the U.S. financing division of Japanese car manufacturer Honda, agreed to refund $24 million to minority borrowers to settle federal investigations. AHFC was alleged to have racially discriminated against the … Read More 

Bargaining in Bad Faith: Dealing with “False Negotiators”

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We tend to forget—at our peril—that not everyone at the bargaining table wants to close a deal and may be bargaining in bad faith. Consider the following negotiations:

A competitor approaches you about a potential partnership. After a series of meetings that seemed promising, however, your counterpart stops returning your calls. You are left with the nagging … Read More 

Are Introverts at a Disadvantage in Negotiation?

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Are extroverts by nature better negotiators than introverts? Or are they at a disadvantage in negotiation? As we’ll see, the answer is far from decided. However, we all have clear opportunities to build on our own strengths and learn from those of others. Quiet, loud, and somewhere in between Introversion is a personality trait marked by a … Read More 

Conflict Off the Rink: The NHL Negotiations

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Negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement (CBA) between the National Hockey League Player’s Association (NHLPA) and the NHL’s team owners took a tumultuous turn in mid-August, a month before the current agreement’s looming expiration date of September 15. … Read More 

Negotiating with Difficult Personalities and “Dark” Personality Traits

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Have you ever found yourself negotiating with difficult personalities, or negotiating with someone who seemed entirely ruthless and lacking in empathy? From time to time, we may end up in the deeply unsettling position of negotiating with someone who appears to have no concern for us or our outcomes. People who are antisocial, lack empathy, and … Read More 

For a Mutually Beneficial Agreement, Collaboration is Key

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At the Program on Negotiation, we urge you to aim higher by combining such competitive value-claiming with collaborative value creation. Not because it’s the “nice” thing to do, but because it’s been proven to be the best path to a truly mutually beneficial agreement. … Read More 

Putting Your Negotiated Agreement Into Action

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Normally negotiators focus on the deal-at-hand as well as those present at the negotiation table, neglecting other aspects of the negotiated agreement that would not only impact others outside of the room but also require their cooperation for the agreement’s success and viability. … Read More 

Managing the “Negotiator’s Dilemma” with Multiple Equivalent Simultaneous Offers

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Today we’ll talk about multiple equivalent simultaneous offers, or MESOs. Consider the following two perspectives on negotiation:

Following the finalization of a new trade agreement among Canada, Mexico, and the United States, Enrique Peña Nieto, then the president of Mexico, said on September 3, 2018, that the agreement “achieves what we proposed at the start: a … Read More 

BATNA and Risky Negotiation Tactics

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Your BATNA is your “best alternative to a negotiated agreement.” Expect that your negotiating counterpart has one going into a negotiation, and so should you. Below is a good BATNA negotiation example involving how to leverage your away-from-the-bargaining-table options and the risks inherent with such a negotiation strategy. … Read More 

Negotiating for a Win Win Coalition at the Bargaining Table

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If a pet project of yours is facing an up-or-down vote, negotiation can be a powerful tool to help sway the outcome in your favor. One example was New York governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s successful campaign to legalize same-sex marriage in the state, as described by Michael Barbaro in the New York Times. … Read More 

Asking for More in Salary Negotiation: When Jennifer Lawrence and Jennifer Aniston Spoke Out

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“We’re very much a sexist society,” actress Jennifer Aniston said in back in 2015 in an interview with the New York Times, addressing not just the constant questions she faces about marriage and children, but about recent revelations of pay discrimination and salary negotiation in Hollywood. “Women are still not paid as much as men,” Aniston … Read More 

Setting Standards in Negotiations

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As the starting point from which all commercial transactions occur, from purchasing equipment to setting salaries, negotiatiosn in business is an essential skill no matter what field a negotiator finds herself. Using an objective standard can strengthen your proposal and eliminate emotional bias. … Read More 

The Winner’s Curse in Negotiations: How to Avoid It

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These business negotiations – an auction and a negotiated acquisition – highlight both the promise and risks of high-priced purchases and the dangers of the winner’s curse in negotiation. Negotiators fall victim to the winner’s curse in negotiations when they over-compete (and overbid) for items in the pursuit of a “victory” at the bargaining table. … Read More 

Teach Your Children How to Resolve Conflicts With This Book

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We’ve all been there. One kid wants it his way; the other wants it her way and an inevitable conflict ensues. Shouting, crying, and harsh words are often part of the mix—creating stress for everyone, including the parents who just want to know how to resolve conflicts. … Read More 

Navigating Business Relationships Using Negotiation

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A three-year dispute between Starbucks and Kraft Foods over distribution of Starbucks packaged coffee in grocery stores was resolved in 2013 when an arbitrator determined that Starbucks had breached its agreement with Kraft and ordered the coffeemaker to pay the food giant $2.75 billion. … Read More 

Negotiating with Millennials – How to Overcome Cultural Differences in Communication

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Negotiation training often focuses on bridging gaps between negotiators with different styles, backgrounds, or objectives, but what about overcoming generational barriers in negotiation? Generational differences need not stymie efforts at the bargaining table. In this segment from “Dear Negotiation Coach,” we explore how to overcome cultural differences in communication with members of the Millennial generation. … Read More 

MESO Negotiation Strategies and Negotiation Techniques

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MESO negotiation techniques for negotiators include creating value at the bargaining table by identifying multiple proposals of equal value and presenting them to your counterpart simultaneously. By making tradeoffs across issues, parties can obtain greater value on the issues that are most important to them. But how can you be sure you’re making the right … Read More 

The Importance of Power in Negotiations: Taylor Swift Shakes it Off

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In negotiation, our success often hinges on our bargaining power—which in turn can depend on forces beyond our control. That truism was highlighted in two recent disputes arising from business negotiations over the pricing of copyrighted material in the digital era, one from the music world, the other from publishing. … Read More 

Emotional Intelligence as a Negotiating Skill

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The concept of emotional intelligence burst into the cultural imagination in 1995 with the publication of psychologist Daniel Goleman’s bestselling book of the same name. Experts have predicted that scoring high on this personality trait would boost one’s bargaining outcomes and have found many successful negotiation examples using emotional intelligence in their research. … Read More 

Police Negotiation Techniques from the NYPD Crisis Negotiations Team

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Few negotiators can imagine negotiation scenarios more stressful than the kinds of crisis negotiations the New York City Police Department’s Hostage Negotiation Team undertake. But police negotiation techniques employed by the New York City Police Department’s Hostage Negotiations Team (HNT) in high-stakes, high-pressure crisis negotiation situations, outlined in an article from Jeff Thompson and Hugh … Read More 

An Example of the Anchoring Effect

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People tend to irrationally fixate on the first number put forth in a negotiation—the anchor—no matter how arbitrary it may be. Even when we know the anchor has limited relevance, we fail to sufficiently adjust our judgments away from it. This is the anchoring effect. … Read More 

How to Negotiate a Business Deal

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In late 2016 and early 2017, news stories abounded of companies that were having second thoughts about planned mega-mergers. Abbott Laboratories began looking for ways to exit its acquisition of Alere, citing investigations of the medical test maker, for example. And Verizon started rethinking its acquisition of Yahoo! following a data breach at the tech … Read More 

What to Do When Your BATNA is Not Good Enough

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The following question was featured in the “Ask the Negotiation Coach” section of the Negotiation Briefings newsletter, April 2010 issue. Question: What should I do when a negotiation seems to be all about price, I have no BATNA, and the other side knows it? … Read More 

Negotiation Techniques from the M&A World

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Negotiators often have to deal with more than one party to reach their goals and often tailor their negotiation techniques towards this end. These negotiation scenarios pose unique challenges, yet most negotiation advice focuses on talks between two parties. … Read More 

The Benefits of Coalitions at the Bargaining Table

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Labor unions may be the most obvious example of a negotiating coalitions. When a company negotiates with an employee individually, it could threaten to hire someone else in the face of the employee’s demands. By contrast, when employees bargain collectively through a union, they avoid the need to compete against one another (at least on … Read More 

Irrationality in Negotiations: How to Negotiate the Impossible

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Negotiators often struggle with the task of bargaining with those who behave rashly, reason poorly, and act in ways that contradict their own self-interest. But as it turns out, behavior that negotiators often view as evidence of irrationality may in fact indicate something entirely different. … Read More 

In Business Negotiations, Dress the Part

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Negotiators involved in high-stakes mergers and acquisitions typically come to the table armored in meticulously tailored apparel and designer shoes. But as Dana Mattioli reports in a recent Wall Street Journal negotiation topics in business article, those who are trying to woo business from an apparel company often end up dressing down at the bargaining … Read More 

Coming Up with Win-Win Solutions at the Bargaining Table

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Even those who effectively engage in an integrative negotiations or mutual-gains approach to negotiation, a bargaining scenario in which parties work together to meet interests and maximize value creation during the negotiation process, can be stymied by the task of dividing up a seemingly fixed pie of resources, such as budgets, revenue, and time. … Read More 

When a Job Offer is “Nonnegotiable”

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Question: I am in my final year of business school and starting to prepare for job interviews. I have heard many of the organizations that recruit on campus are not open to negotiating specific terms of employment. Rather, they offer everyone roughly the same deal terms. To what extent should I respect such conventions versus … Read More 

The Hidden Hazards of BATNA Development

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The following question was posed to Program on Negotiation faculty member and associate professor of business administration at Harvard Business School in the Negotiations, Organizations & Markets Unit, Francesca Gino and involves a negotiation example from real life from the world of business negotiations. … Read More 

What is BATNA?

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What is BATNA? Negotiations in which each counterpart has a best alternative to a negotiated agreement are scenarios in which the incentive to work together must exceed the value of alternatives away from the negotiation table. … Read More 

Negotiation Techniques: How to Predict a Negotiator’s Decisions

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Improving your negotiation skills can only take you so far – eventually you need to assess you behavior preferences as a negotiator. Being able to predict how you will behave in a given bargaining scenario will help you augment the negotiation training you have received as well as help you achieve better outcomes at the … Read More 

Metaphorical Negotiation and Defining Negotiation Skills

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Negotiators talk about building agreement, bluffing the opposition, and volleying offers back and forth. According to mediator Thomas Smith, careful attention to such metaphors can reveal deeper meaning beneath the explicit words that people use, notably regarding how they view the negotiation process and their relationship to one another. … Read More 

What is the Right of First Refusal?

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When transferring property, sellers sometimes insist on real estate rights of first refusal – the chance to be first in line to repurchase the property if their buyer later decides to sell. … Read More 

Negotiation Strategies: Seek Advice from Others When Negotiating

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Negotiation skills in business communication and seeking advice from others, what are the potential benefits? Advice seeking inherently employs multiple self-presentation tactics (including ingratiation, self-promotion, and supplication), it allows us to improve both our competence and our likability. … Read More 

5 Win-Win Negotiation Strategies

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Business negotiators understand the importance of reaching a win-win negotiation: when both sides are satisfied with their agreement, the odds of a long-lasting and successful business partnership are much higher. But concrete strategies for generating a win-win contract often seem elusive. The following five, from experts at the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School, … Read More 

Creative Use of Power in Negotiations: Avoid “Last Call”

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In negotiation, power often comes from the ability to walk away from the bargaining table. But what should you do when walking away would mean giving up? Faced with this dilemma, the owner of a venerable New York bar came up with a solution just in the nick of time. The story highlights both the … Read More 

Negotiation Case Study: Sincerity’s Power in Negotiation

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Most of us have had the experience of delivering an apology that fell on deaf ears. When apologies fail to achieve their aims, poor delivery is usually to blame. The importance of sincerity in such a situation cannot be overstated, because if the recipient thinks your apology is less than sincere, she is unlikely to … Read More 

Deception in Negotiation

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Daniel, a senior manager at a large consumer products firm, has been asked by a company vice president to submit a detailed budget request for his department. Daniel has an incentive to overstate anticipated costs: in the case of overruns, it’s nice to have a little cushion built into the budget, rather than having to … Read More 

Win Win Negotiation: Different Cultures, Shared Meals

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From movie moguls hammering out film deals in Los Angeles to publishers and agents assessing each other’s tastes in New York, the “power lunch” has become a familiar institution. Across the globe, negotiators often do business over shared meals, whether out of convenience or as part of a concerted effort to get to know one … Read More 

Negotiation Skills: How to Become a Negotiation Master

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Negotiation jujitsu means breaking the vicious cycle of escalation by refusing to react. Resistance should be channeled into activities such as “exploring interests, inventing options for mutual gain, and searching for independent standards.” … Read More 

Negotiation Strategies and Techniques for Activists: Lessons from Mandela

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In the aftermath of George Floyd’s killing in Minneapolis by a White police officer, activists, politicians, and other concerned citizens are grappling with a big question: Where do we go from here? The quest for reforms to policing and other societal institutions can be pursued through many means, including continued demonstrations, political lobbying, and community-wide … Read More 

Should You Really Negotiate?

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Imagine that you’re about to hire someone to provide a service—say, to repair your leaky roof, design a new website for your business, or cater a family event. When you receive a price quote, should you try to negotiate a better deal? Conventional wisdom would answer with a resounding yes. Opening up price negotiations could very … Read More 

The Impact of Anxiety and Emotions on Negotiations

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Intense negotiation scenarios, we often choose to consult an expert for advice, preferably someone who has carried out hundreds of similar deals with great success. When we consult with others on our negotiations, we must weigh their advice against our own opinions and research. Past negotiation research finds that we tend to undervalue advice from … Read More 

Successes & Messes: At Closing Time, Avoid “Last Call”

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When your negotiating leverage seems to be nonexistent, you may need to enlist the help of an influential advocate. The owner of a venerable New York bar came to that realization just in the nick of time. More than just a watering hole Neir’s Tavern, which opened in the Woodhaven neighborhood of Queens in 1829, may be … Read More 

Collaborative Leadership: Managing Constructive Conflict

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“I like conflict,” U.S. President Donald Trump said at a March 6, 2018 press conference, referring to his style as a businessman and as president. With many key leaders departing his administration, Trump denied the White House was in chaos and suggested any internal conflict had been beneficial. “I like having two people with different … Read More 

Don’t get schooled in your next negotiation

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Chicago mayor Lori Lightfoot, a former federal prosecutor and head of the Chicago Police Board, was elected in 2018 as a reformer calling for big improvements to Chicago’s chronically underfunded public schools, including smaller class sizes, and more nurses and social workers. One of Lightfoot’s first major challenges after being sworn in on May 20, 2019, … Read More 

Collaborative Leadership: Managing Negotiators

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Organizational leaders, from middle managers to heads of state, often face the difficult task of overseeing mission-critical negotiations and managing individual negotiators and negotiating teams. Collaborative leadership—a focus on giving employees autonomy and a voice in key decisions—is often key to managing negotiators effectively. We often overlook the important role of leadership in negotiation. But as … Read More 

Negotiation in the News: When “Mini-Deals” Are the Easy Way Out

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Donald Trump campaigned for president in 2016 as the consummate dealmaker, vowing to renegotiate a new nuclear deal with Iran, forge new trade deals with countries ranging from China to Mexico to Japan, and reach creative agreements with the U.S. Congress. Nearly three years into his presidency, few of these promises have come to fruition. … Read More 

The Effects of Power in Negotiation

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You might think that you’re entering a negotiation as the more powerful party, but those with considerable power often fail to take advantage of their privileged bargaining position. Meanwhile, negotiators who lack power routinely miss out on opportunities to gain leverage. To make the most of the power you have, it’s important to understand the … Read More 

Get Beyond “Take It or Leave It”

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“This is the best I can do. Take it or leave it.” It’s a statement negotiators often dread, as it seems to leave us with a choice between two unappealing options: accept an offer we don’t like or walk away from the bargaining table. No matter which choice you make, an ultimatum appears to bring a … Read More 

Must-Read Negotiation Books for 2019

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The year 2017 offered plenty of negotiation hits and misses in the realms of government, business, and beyond. To avoid failed negotiations in 2018, politicians, business leaders, and the rest of us would be wise to explore the following recent negotiation books, which can help steer us through our most difficult negotiating dilemmas: … Read More 

10 Popular Business Negotiation Articles

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Here are ten popular business negotiation articles on the Program on Negotiation website. Drawn from a variety of negotiation case studies as well as negotiation research, the following articles offer strategies for engaging in integrative negotiations aimed at creating win-win scenarios for each party at the negotiation table. 1. What is the Right of First Refusal? Rights … Read More 

Crisis Negotiation Skills: The Hostage Negotiator’s Drill

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Here are some negotiating skills from the world of crisis negotiations: Hostage negotiators stress the importance of discussing the “drill”—goals, ground rules, and operating principles—with their team before beginning talks with a hostage taker. … Read More 

Intercultural Negotiation: Does the BATNA Concept Translate?

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When should you walk away in negotiation? That’s a common question that negotiation experts pose of professional negotiators. We are typically advised to walk away from the bargaining table when we haven’t been able to get a better deal than we can get elsewhere. But in intercultural negotiation, particularly in international negotiation in certain countries … Read More 

What is the Multi-Door Courthouse Concept

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As a collaboration between UST School of Law and the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School, the following is the transcript of a conversation between the creator of the multi-door courthouse, Harvard Law Professor Frank E.A. Sander, and the executive director and founder of the University of St. Thomas (UST) International ADR [Alternative Dispute … Read More 

What an Operatic Role-Play Simulation Can Teach You About Negotiation

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A distinguished older soprano, Sally has not had a lead role in two years. However, when another soprano falls ill, the Lyric Opera is eager to hire Sally…but at what price? Sally Soprano is one of the best-known role-play simulations from the Program on Negotiation’s Teaching Negotiation Resource Center (TNRC). And it’s a classic for good … Read More 

Managing negotiators? Avoid 3 common mistakes

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A second round of face-to-face meetings between U.S. president Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, held in Hanoi, Vietnam, at the end of February, came to an abrupt end after Kim insisted that the United States lift all economic sanctions against his country in return for denuclearization. Trump refused and ended the talks, … Read More 

Handling Difficult People: The Antisocial Negotiator

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Have you ever found yourself negotiating with someone who seemed entirely ruthless and lacking in empathy? From time to time, we may end up in the deeply unsettling position of handling difficult people who appear to have no concern for us or our outcomes. People who are antisocial, lack empathy, and habitually engage in impulsive, manipulative, … Read More 

10 Negotiation Failures

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Here’s a list of some of the most notable negotiation flops – from deals that were over before they started, to those that were botched at the table, to those that proved disastrous well after the ink had dried. … Read More 

Negotiation Techniques and Tactics: Power Plays

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Imagine you’re a chef who is having trouble finding cooks in an oversaturated restaurant market. You’re so desperate to get fully staffed that you find yourself making significant concessions on salary, scheduling, and other issues during interviews with potential hires. … Read More 

4 Negotiation Tactics Robert Kraft Used to End the NFL Lockout

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Robert Kraft, owner of the New England Patriots, was by all accounts a major factor in getting the NFL collective bargaining agreement signed earlier in October 2011. To do so, Kraft employed four key negotiation tactics to help the players and owners come to a “win-win” solution. … Read More 

Learn How to Detect Lies in Negotiation

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Whether we like it or not, negotiators often lie. Researchers have found that while most of us are generally aware of this fact, few of us are adept at detecting actual lies in negotiation. In two studies, Maurice E. Schweitzer and Rachel Croson of the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania move beyond the challenge … Read More 

Need Some Negotiating Help? In the future, ask your phone

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Today, many people use “virtual assistants,” such as the iPhone’s Siri or Amazon’s Alexa, to perform simple tasks and provide answers to straightforward questions. So-called chatbots, or bots, grease the wheels of everyday life by giving directions, looking up arcane facts, providing customer service, and much more. The best bots can also carry out lengthy conversations … Read More 

How to Find the Zone of Possible Agreement (ZOPA) Between Friends

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Finding the zone of possible agreement in negotiations can be difficult, especially when dealing with friends and family. We all know people who have “alligator arms.” When the restaurant check comes, they can’t manage to reach their wallets, or they quibble that they had the small tomato juice, and you had the large. … Read More 

How to Deal with Difficult People

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We’ve all met them: people who prefer competition over collaboration, stonewalling over problem solving, tough talk over active listening. Think of the boss who refuses to allow you time off to help an ailing relative, or the potential customer armed with a “nonnegotiable” proposal. When considering how to deal with difficult people, we tend to write … Read More 

Deal Design: Strategies for Complex Dealmaking

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As experienced negotiators well know, the more parties involved in a negotiation, the more difficult it often is to come to agreement, due in part to the logistical challenge of making sure each voice is heard. Yet multiparty negotiation offers considerable benefits. Most notably more opportunities for making tradeoffs and creating value in negotiation than … Read More 

Bargaining at a Fever Pitch

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Have you ever won an auction only to realize later that you overbid for the prize? In competitive bidding situations, it’s easy to get carried away in the heat of the moment and overpay. The Boston Red Sox 2006 procurement of Japanese pitching phenomenon Daisuke “Dice-K” Matsuzaka offers a lesson in keeping cool in these … Read More 

Managing Faultlines in Group Negotiations

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Group negotiations are a fact of managerial life, yet the outcomes of teamwork are highly unpredictable. Sometimes groups cohere, reaching novel solutions to nagging problems, and sometimes infighting causes them to collapse. How can you predict when conflict will emerge in groups, and what can you do to stop it? Dora Lau of the Chinese University … Read More 

The Winner’s Curse: Will You Be Its Next Victim?

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Imagine that you’re up for a new job that you’d like very much. At the end of a long hiring process, the HR manager asks you to name your price. You propose a salary that you believe to be ambitious, expecting some haggling to follow. Instead, the HR manager smiles and holds out her hand … Read More 

Women Negotiators Break New Ground

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In many other parts of the world, women face the daunting challenge of winning a place at the negotiating table in the first place. In particular, UN Women, an agency of the United Nations, has noted that women are vastly underrepresented in formal peace negotiations worldwide. … Read More 

Ask A Negotiation Expert: Learning More From Our Negotiations

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This month, we talk to Harvard Business School professor Michael Wheeler about the challenges and opportunities of learning from our negotiations. Wheeler is the author of The Art of Negotiation: How to Improvise Agreement in a Chaotic World (Simon & Schuster, 2013) and the “Negotiation 360” preparation app, which is available for Android and Apple devices. Negotiation Briefings: … Read More 

Beyond slingshots: Better tools for negotiating with Goliaths

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When Alexandra Elbakyan was growing up in Kazakhstan, books, music, and movies were expensive. To access them, she learned how to pirate intellectual property and eventually came to believe that it should be available to all. After enrolling in graduate school in Russia, Elbakyan began pirating journal articles for herself and other researchers who couldn’t afford … Read More 

How a Bad BATNA Keeps Medicare Drug Prices High

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It’s Negotiation 101: to get what you want, you need to be able to make a credible threat to walk away from a subpar deal. And for your threat to be credible, you can’t walk in with a bad BATNA, you have to have a strong BATNA, or best alternative to a negotiated agreement. In … Read More 

For Hollywood Writers, a Heavily Negotiated New Script

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In its negotiations for a new contract with entertainment companies this spring, the Writers Guild of America (WGA) delivered at the bargaining table what many film and TV viewers crave onscreen: plenty of suspense and a hard-won, if imperfect, victory. The WGA, which represents more than 12,000 film and TV writers, negotiated for seven weeks with … Read More 

MESO Negotiation: Learn from a Seller’s Market

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What negotiating skills can negotiators take away from hyper competitive bargaining situations? With home sales heating up (again) in some parts of the United States, homebuyers are facing competition they haven’t seen since before the real-estate bubble burst back in 2008, and it’s showing up in the form of packed open houses, multiple bids above … Read More 

Peace and Conflict Resolution with Difficult Partners

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When peace and conflict resolution are your goals, what should you do when your would-be counterpart doesn’t want to come to the negotiating table? U.S. president Donald Trump faces this question as he tries to determine the right path to take with North Korea. Tensions have ratcheted up lately as concerns mount that North Korea could … Read More 

Integrative Negotiation Examples: MESOs and Expanding the Pie

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In our society, we’re bombarded with a multitude of decisions each day, beginning with the increasingly complex question of how to order our morning coffee. In his book The Paradox of Choice: Why More Is Less (Ecco, 2004), Swarthmore College psychology professor Barry Schwartz describes the contemporary phenomenon of becoming exhausted by “the tyranny of … Read More 

Negotiation Research You Can Use: When Women Negotiate More Ethically Than Men

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Men and women approach negotiation differently, on average, research suggests. Women initiate negotiations on their own behalf less frequently than men, for example, though they are just as likely as men to advocate for others. In addition, women—and not men—tend to face a backlash for bargaining on their own behalf, an outcome that may explain … Read More 

Negotiation Topics in Business: Make a Bump Plan

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Regrouping from the cancellation of the 2004–2005 season due to failed labor negotiations, National Hockey League (NHL) teams and players faced the challenge of radically restructuring their collective bargaining agreement (CBA) in July 2005. The new CBA instituted a uniform cap (as well as a floor) on team payrolls. It also set maximums and minimums … Read More 

Dealmaking: Don’t Wait for Them to Blink

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In labor disputes and dealmaking, negotiators on both sides are likely to overestimate the odds that the other side will view their proposals as fair. In fact, however, self-serving perceptions of what constitutes a fair settlement can cause negotiators to remain miles apart. These factors appear to have come into play when the National Hockey … Read More 

How to Overcome Cultural Barriers to Communication in International Negotiations

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How to overcome cultural barriers to communication: As members of organizations and families, we all know from experience that even people with identical backgrounds can have vastly different negotiating styles and values. Nonetheless, we continue to be intrigued by the idea that distinct patterns emerge between negotiators from different cultures. … Read More 

BATNA: Negotiation Preparation to Help Avoid Giving Up at the Bargaining Table

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When you expect an opponent to be competitive, your confidence in the outcomes you can achieve in negotiation is likely to plummet. In negotiation research with Adam Galinsky of Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management, negotiators were provided with some background about their counterpart including information on how competitive their counterpart has been in previous negotiations. … Read More 

When Dealmaking Breaks Down, Take the High Road

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When a negotiation reaches an impasse, it can be tempting to use threats and punishment to try to coerce the other side into conceding. That happened in a dispute between Amazon and Hachette, one of the largest New York publishers, as reported in the New York Times. … Read More 

If At First You Don’t Succeed…

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In negotiation, it’s nice to get the deal right the first time. But if carefully laid plans fall apart, you may still be able to recover. That’s what the government of Colombia and the rebel group Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or the FARC, did after their peace agreement was narrowly defeated in a national … Read More 

A Dealmaking President’s Opening Moves

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As a lifelong dealmaker, Donald J. Trump will enter the Oval Office with considerable bargaining experience in the business world. But his blank slate as an elected official combined with his fluctuating positions on key issues such as immigration and tax policy throughout the presidential race have left many wondering what kind of negotiator he … Read More 

How to Deal with Outsiders at the Bargaining Table

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How can negotiators anticipate roadblocks earlier in the bidding process? The following example attests to the necessity of thinking through the range of problems you could face in an upcoming negotiation, including threats from deal challengers and outsiders. … Read More 

Promoting Fair Outcomes in Negotiation

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So, you believe you’ve done everything you can do create value in your negotiation. You engaged in logrolling, making trades based on your and the other party’s different preferences on particular issues. You brainstormed new issues to add to the discussion, added a contingent contract, and proposed multiple offers simultaneously to identify which your counterpart … Read More 

Don’t Forget to Negotiate the Process

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This past October, as the United Kingdom (UK) began gearing up for its negotiations to exit the European Union (EU)—a process known as Brexit—scheduled to begin in March, Reuters reported that the EU’s lead Brexit negotiator, former French foreign minister Michel Barnier, had asked for the negotiations to be conducted in French rather than English. … Read More 

How Professional Negotiators Can Avoid Public Controversy

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In negotiation, we sometimes become so focused on what we’re trying to achieve at the bargaining table that we fail to adequately account for how the deal could look to observers. As two recent deals that the U.S. government reached with Iran show, it’s important for professional negotiators to consider the optics. … Read More 

In Platform Negotiations with Clinton, Sanders Was Victorious

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With the 2016 Democratic National Convention now over, Vermont senator Bernie Sanders used the Hillary Clinton campaign’s fear of a divisive spectacle in Philadelphia to extract concessions on the party’s official platform and committee assignments. The senator’s tough dealmaking suggests an important negotiation lesson: Always know your BATNA and ZOPA in any negotiation. … Read More 

Creating and Claiming Value Through Haggling – Assess The Other Party’s BATNA in Dealmaking Negotiations

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Now it’s time to assess the best deal you might get. Figuring out the other party’s reservation price is the key to knowing how far you will be able to push him, write Deepak Malhotra and Max H. Bazerman in their book Negotiation Genius: How to Overcome Obstacles and Achieve Brilliant Results at the Bargaining … Read More 

Worst Negotiation Tactics of 2015

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Here are some of the worst negotiation tactics displayed during calendar year 2015 – from hard-bargaining, distributive negotiation strategies aimed at getting the whole pie to stonewalling strategies intended to stymy the development of a negotiated agreement. … Read More 

Worst Negotiation Tactics of 2015

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Here are some of the worst negotiation tactics displayed during calendar year 2015 – from hard-bargaining, distributive negotiation strategies aimed at getting the whole pie to stonewalling strategies intended to stymy the development of a negotiated agreement. … Read More 

Manage Your Power at the Bargaining Table

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Avoid the common traps that come with having high power or low power. In early August, employees of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), New York University (NYU), and Yale University sued their employers for allowing investment companies to charge excessive fees on their retirement plans, the New York Times reports. The universities were accused of … Read More 

How to Write a Contract: Three Deal-Drafting Pitfalls

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The transfer of an agreement from negotiators to lawyers or other professional deal drafters can introduce three main types of mistakes. Read on to discover how you can avoid making these same mistakes at the bargaining table during your next dealmaking negotiation session. … Read More 

Conflict Management: Anger – The Good and the Bad

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Most negotiations are “mixed motive” in structure, requiring us both to compete to claim value and to cooperate to create value. The ability to move back and forth between these two goals is a critical – and difficult – skill to master. … Read More 

Maintaining Your Power in Negotiations

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Given the pitfalls of having a position of relative power, what is a powerful negotiator to do? By following these steps, you can keep your edge while encouraging cooperative, rather than competitive, behavior. … Read More 

How to Avoid Faulty Negotiated Agreements

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Some of the trickier aspects of designing the right contract with your agent include properly aligning her incentives and monitoring her work. Supervising your agent can be especially hard when she knows more than you do about the area of work. For example, hiring an agent who is a lawyer and paying her on an … Read More 

Is Your Deal Too Good to Be True?

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In an episode of the fictional HBO series Silicon Valley, partners in a red-hot technology startup, Pied Piper, receive funding offers from a number of venture capitalist firms. Raviga Capital is by far the highest bidder; its offer of $20 million values Pied Piper at a whopping $100 million. … Read More 

Conflict Resolution Games: Life, Death, and Career Consequences

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High-Stakes Conflict Resolution Games In Drug Testing in the Workplace—a popular role-play from the TNRC—a truck driver tests positive for marijuana in a random drug test. To play this conflict resolution game, participants assume the roles of truck driver, personnel director, and a representative from the Employee Assistance Program Center, and then explore the question: What is the … Read More 

Drinks at the White House? Clinton Plans on It

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The practice of using alcohol to grease the wheels has a long and storied role in famous negotiations. In recent decades, shared drinks during adversarial bargaining helped lead to breakthroughs in conflicts in Serbia and Northern Ireland, for example. … Read More 

How Your Organization Can Benefit from Mediation Techniques

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If you manage people, disputes will show up at your door. The marketing VP protests that the budget cap you and your new finance VP proposed is hindering a research initiative you supported. Two young sales representatives are embroiled in a turf war. Your administrative assistant is upset because the HR director won’t approve the … Read More 

A Second Look at Rights of First Refusal

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When transferring property, sellers sometimes insist on rights of first refusal—the chance to be first in line to repurchase the property if their buyer later decides to sell. A right of first refusal can be an obvious advantage if your financial circumstances later change. … Read More 

Adaptability at the Bargaining Table: How Improvisation and Jazz Music Inform Negotiation Strategy

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Aggressive tactics and hard-bargaining strategies may, at face value, provide a roadmap to success at the bargaining table but, as the Washington Post’s Kelly Johnson discovered in her interview with Program on Negotiation faculty member Michael Wheeler, adaptability to ever-changing circumstances is essential for the “dynamic” negotiations one encounters in everyday life. … Read More 

Negotiation Research Demonstrates the Impact of Memory on Decision Making Processes in Bargaining Scenarios

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Recent negotiation research published by Psychological Science from Program on Negotiation faculty member and assistant professor at Harvard University’s Department of Psychology Joshua Greene and his colleague Elinor Amit explores the impact vivid mental imagery has on decision-making processes for negotiators. The negotiation skills insights that can be obtained from such negotiation research are many … Read More 

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

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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 … Read More 

Negotiation Research You Can Use: When Cultural Expectations Lead Us Astray

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In September 2014, a Chinese court found the British pharmaceutical firm GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) guilty of bribing government officials, hospital officials, and doctors to sell more drugs at higher prices, according to the Wall Street Journal. The court fined the company nearly $500 million and convicted five of GSK’s managers, including its former top executive in … Read More 

Dealmaking and the Trade Deal: Obama’s Uphill Battle with Congress

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Sometimes in dealmaking, reaching agreement would require us to make compromises that we know will displease those who need to authorize the deal, such as our superiors back at the office. Fail to compromise, and impasse may be inevitable. Compromise and save the deal, and accept the difficulty of closing the deal in negotiations with … Read More 

Overcoming Cultural Barriers in Negotiations: The Importance of Culture and Etiquette in Bargaining Scenarios

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Learn how and when to engage in appropriate cultural traditions when negotiating with counterparts from a different culture. In this article we offer negotiation tips for overcoming cultural barriers in negotiation and present additional articles drawn from negotiation research that may be of benefit to negotiators who need to improve their international negotiation skills. … Read More 

Top 10 Celebrity Negotiations of 2015

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Here are the top 10 celebrity negotiations from the year 2015. From integrative bargaining strategies to building bridges with counterparts in contentious talks, these negotiation scenarios demonstrate the effectiveness of collaborative, win-win negotiation tactics. … Read More 

Financial Negotiations During the Banking Crisis: Did the Mortgage Foreclosure Settlement Meet Its Goals?

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The mortgage foreclosure settlement reached by the Obama Administration and major US banks bailed out during the 2008 financial crisis illustrates the importance of an integrative negotiations approach to bargaining with your counterpart. Here are the strategies and techniques employed by each side to reach a consensus on the mortgage foreclosure settlement. … Read More 

The Program on Negotiation’s Top Ten International Negotiations Posts

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Whether dealing with difficult or hard bargainers like Putin or forging business partnerships, international negotiations are fraught with a level of complexity rarely encountered in everyday negotiations. Here are the top ten international negotiation articles on the Program on Negotiation’s website. … Read More 

Negotiation Research You Can Use

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Negotiators often are advised to tamp down strong emotions and behave as rationally as possible at the bargaining table, but that can be easier said than done. More realistically, negotiators need skills and tools that can help them cope with their own potentially destructive emotions and those of their counterparts. Some people come by these skills … Read More 

Seeking a Win-Win Negotiation? Pass the Chips and Salsa

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From movie moguls hammering out film deals in Los Angeles to publishers and agents assessing each other’s tastes in New York, the “power lunch” has become a familiar institution. Across the globe, negotiators often do business over shared meals, whether out of convenience or as part of a concerted effort to get to know one … Read More 

Negotiation Skills in Business Communication: Heading Off Deception

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In all types of negotiations and across all phases of the process, people can sometimes misrepresent or fail to tell the truth. Individual negotiators lie with the hope of improving their own outcomes. When negotiating his salary with the Cranbury, N.J.–based pharmaceutical marketing firm Carter-Wallace in 1997, Robert Bonczek misrepresented his prior title and salary … Read More 

Negotiation Skills in Business Communication: Status Anxiety

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Negotiation Skills in Business Communication: Campeau Corporation and Federated Department Stores Sometimes in negotiation we are forced to deal not only with the issues on the table but also with concerns about status. One famous instance took place in the late 1980s, when Robert Campeau, head of the Campeau Corporation and then one of Fortune magazine’s “50 … Read More 

Negotiating Skills and Negotiation Tactics: Damage Control in Conflict Resolution

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Framing in negotiation, and the negotiating skills and negotiation tactics that go behind effective bargaining, can help not only achieve a negotiator’s goals at the bargaining table, but also can anticipate the fallout or kickback received from parties away from the negotiation table. President Obama’s tax-cut negotiations with Senate Republicans in late 2010 offer cautionary … Read More 

Dear Negotiation Coach: Expertise Can Blind Us

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Question I have been in the real estate business for many years and have closed many successful deals. Over the past year, I have been involved in a negotiation over the sale of a piece of land. It’s hard for me to believe we have made so little progress. This is an important deal in the … Read More 

When armed with negotiating power, use it wisely

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The buzz of excitement that arose in February at the news that Harper Lee, author of the beloved novel To Kill a Mockingbird, would be publishing a second novel quickly turned to concern. The 88-year-old Lee, who suffered a stroke in 2007 and resides in an assisted-living facility in her hometown of Monroeville, Alabama, long … Read More 

Secret Agent Man: Should You Keep Your Deal Private?

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President Obama recently surprised the world with the outcomes of three high-profile negotiations. We look at the pros and cons of a clandestine approach. In Washington, D.C., press leaks and rumors are practically the local currency. Secrets frequently explode into the public eye, and key negotiations sometimes seem to unfold on parallel tracks—in the media and … Read More 

International Negotiation: Your Own Worst Enemy?

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Knowing how to manage your own internal conflicts before engaging in negotiations is an invaluable negotiation skill negotiators should develop prior to engaging in international negotiations, business or otherwise. … Read More 

Negotiation Frontiers: Exploring New Opportunities to Negotiate

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Many U.S. law schools are in crisis, to hear some tell it. During the recent recession, many law firms instituted mass layoffs and pay cuts, and few have fully recovered. As a result, college graduates are thinking twice about becoming lawyers, and many law schools have fewer high-quality applicants to choose from. In the past … Read More 

Deal Negotiation and Dealmaking: What to Do On Your Own

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Six negotiation skills tips for negotiators seeking to creative value during their next round at the bargaining table. Business negotiators are often faced with the complex task of coordinating multiple parties – here are some tips for the individual business negotiator on how to achieve success in her next deal negotiation. … Read More 

Tough Negotiation Tips from Jennifer Aniston?

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Fans of the television show Friends got a treat last month when Netflix made all 236 episodes of the blockbuster hit available to stream online. At first glance actors Lisa Kudrow, Jennifer Aniston and the rest of the star-studded cast might not be your first pick to peg as formidable negotiators, but at the height … Read More 

Negotiation Skills: When It’s Better to Be in the Dark

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When your agent negotiates on your behalf, it’s generally smart to have her keep you in the loop throughout the process with regular phone calls, e-mails, or meetings. But in a recent article in Poets & Writers magazine, literary agent Betsy Lerner identified conditions in which you might prefer to be uninformed. … Read More 

When a little power is a dangerous thing

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In 1975, Leigh Steinberg launched his career as a sports agent with what appeared to be a tough negotiation. The Atlanta Falcons had chosen Steinberg’s client, rookie quarterback Steve Bartkowski, as their first pick in the first round of the National Football League (NFL) draft. The Falcons had other choices they could turn to if … Read More 

Too eager to close?

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This past November, word got out that toy maker Hasbro was in advanced talks to purchase DreamWorks Animation. Purchasing an animated-film studio would move Hasbro CEO Brian Goldner closer to his goal of transforming the successful toy company into a global entertainment powerhouse, as the Lego Group has done in recent years, write Andrew Ross … Read More 

Negotiation Skills: Could I Really Make a Difference?

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Individual negotiators are sometimes overwhelmed by the idea of leading organization-wide changes to negotiation practices. In fact, it doesn’t take much time or effort to set the wheels of reform in motion, write Hallam Movius and Lawrence Susskind in Built to Win. … Read More 

Dealmaking: Beyond Collusion – How to Include Outsiders in Your Deal in Business Negotiations

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The issue of bidder collusion raises a larger question for negotiators: What ethical responsibility do we have to those who aren’t seated at the table with us? Harvard Business School professor Max H. Bazerman uses the term “parasitic value creation” to describe the common tendency of negotiators to focus so narrowly on identifying benefits for those … Read More 

Business Negotiation Advice: When Your Image is Everything

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Turning to another questionable negotiation from Illinois politics, in 2005, then–U.S. senator Barack Obama and his family bought a house in Chicago. On the same day the Obamas closed on the property, the wife of real estate developer Antoin Rezko bought an adjacent parcel of land. Rezko was a key fundraiser for Obama’s Senate campaign. … Read More 

Build On Your Past Success in Business Negotiations

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For fans of AMC’s hit show Mad Men, the news was terrible. In late March 2011, the network publicly confirmed that the fifth season of the show, originally set to air summer of 2011, would not air until early 2012. A contract dispute with the show’s creator, producer, and head writer, Matthew Weiner, had held … Read More 

To set more accurate negotiation goals, try unpacking

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As negotiators, we understand the importance of estimating the likely parameters of an agreement in upcoming talks. Yet even the most experienced negotiators have moments of surprise at the bargaining table when they realize that their estimates were far off the mark. A new negotiation study by professor Michael P. Haselhuhn of the University of California … Read More 

Lawyers in Mediation and the Mediation Process

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How does the presence of lawyers affect the process of mediation? You might guess that when one or both sides bring an attorney to a mediation, the process would become more contentious and adversarial, with impasse more likely, than if the parties worked solely with a mediator. That conventional wisdom is contradicted by new research … Read More 

Conflict Management Techniques: Should You Take Your Dispute Public?

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To turn up the heat on opponents, negotiators sometimes advertise their grievances. Here’s negotiation skills advice on when it’s a good idea to be vocal—and when to keep talks private. The decision seemed nonsensical. Early on the morning of March 7, 2010, with the Academy Awards telecast just hours away, the Walt Disney Company pulled the signal on … Read More 

Why We Focus on Culture in Negotiations

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Adapted from “Coping with Culture at the Bargaining Table,” first published in the May 2009 issue of Negotiation. Why we focus on culture Why does concentrating on the other side’s culture lead to problems in negotiation? Consider that negotiators often focus too narrowly on the most obvious information about the task at hand. Such focusing failures lead negotiators to … Read More 

Intercultural Negotiations: When Negotiators Try Too Hard

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Adapted from “Coping with Culture at the Bargaining Table,” first published in the May 2009 issue of Negotiation. Though intercultural negotiating schemas can be useful, negotiators often give too much weight to them, according to an article in the May issue of the journal Negotiation and Conflict Management Research, “Starting Out on the Right Foot: Negotiation Schemas When … Read More 

Hong Kong Lawyer Benny Tai Inspired by Harvard Negotiation Project Authors

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The Harvard Negotiation Project was recently mentioned in the Wall Street Journal by David Feith in his interview with Benny Tai, “China’s New Freedom Fighters.” Benny Tai, a 49 year old lawyer who has been branded an “enemy of the state,” founded Occupy Central with Love and Peace, a group that promotes civil disobedience in order … Read More 

At the Met, Conflict Management in a Minor Key

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This spring, the Metropolitan Opera opened labor talks with the 16 unions representing its workers, whose contracts all expire at the end of July, the New York Times reports. Labor and management agree on one fundamental point—that the opera is struggling financially amid falling ticket sales, a depleted endowment, and growing expenses. Perhaps not surprisingly, … Read More 

Have You Negotiated How You’ll Negotiate?

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A large pharmaceutical company was engaged in licensing negotiation with a small biotech firm over the terms of a technology transfer. When the talks reached a standstill over royalty rates, the two sides began an all-weekend marathon session. Each side came armed with supporting arguments and data, but, by Sunday afternoon, they had failed to converge toward … Read More 

In negotiation, are your differences holding you back?

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In July 2012, Google executive Marissa Mayer, a top contender for the position of CEO of Yahoo, had a dazzling interview with the struggling Internet company’s board of directors. Mayer presented a detailed, impressive plan to lead each sector of Yahoo’s business, and she skillfully reassured board members about her perceived weaknesses, reports Bethany McLean … Read More 

Beyond walking away: Facing difficult negotiation tactics head-on

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In late February, the trial of Jesse Litvak, a former bond trader for Jefferies & Co., got under way in New Haven, Conn. Litvak was charged with defrauding investors of $2 million by behaving deceptively in his trades of mortgage-backed securities in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis. In one bond negotiation, Litvak is … Read More 

Will you behave ethically?

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A lack of transparency regarding negotiations between hospitals and the insurers known as preferred provider organizations, or PPOs, is a key contributor to spiraling health-care costs in the United States, according to an August article in the New York Times. The problem starts with the somewhat arbitrary, sky-high prices that hospitals put on their supplies and … Read More 

The Program on Negotiation’s MIT-Harvard Public Disputes Program Releases “Collaborative Approaches to Environmental Decision-Making” Case Studies

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The MIT-Harvard Public Disputes Program, one of the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School’s many research programs, acts as a center for research committed to thinking about and resolving disputes in the public sector. Led by its Director and Program on Negotiation executive committee member Lawrence Susskind, the MIT-Harvard Public Disputes Program conducts research … Read More 

Social Comparisons in Negotiation

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Social comparisons – the assessments we make about how we measure up to others – are key to understanding how status operates in negotiation. These comparisons, which signal concern about relative status, have a profound impact at the bargaining table. To make social comparisons, first we choose a reference group against which we can measure ourselves. … Read More 

What If We Have the Same Social Motive at the Bargaining Table?

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When two people share the same motive, they fall prey to the same flaws and reinforce each other’s failings. Consider a labor negotiation in which the chief management negotiator withholds information about revenue projections, while the labor leader holds back details about workforce sentiment. Impasse is the predictable result. When you’re negotiating with a fellow … Read More 

The Deal is Done – Now What?

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At last, the deal is done. After 18 months of negotiation, eight trips across the country, and countless meetings, you’ve finally signed a contract creating a joint venture with a Silicon Valley firm to manufacture imaging devices using your technology and their engineering. The contract is clear and precise. It covers all the contingencies and has … Read More 

How Mental Shortcuts Lead to Misjudging

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Judges don’t make decisions based on a thorough accounting of all the relevant and available information. Instead, like all of us, they rely on heuristics – simple mental shortcuts – to make decisions. As many past articles have noted, heuristics often lead to good decisions, but they can also create cognitive blinders that produce systematic … Read More 

Program on Negotiation Faculty On How To End the US Government Shutdown

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The Washington Post’s “On Leadership” column by Jenna McGregor asked renowned negotiation experts on how the government shutdown in Washington, DC could be ended at the bargaining table. Among the experts interviewed were Robert Mnookin, Chair of the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School (PON) and author of Bargaining With The Devil: When To Negotiate, … Read More 

Choosing When to Choose

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When it comes to negotiation, the more choices on the table, the better your outcomes will be – right? Not necessarily. An excess of options can stand in the way off efficient agreements and, moreover, prevent you from being satisfied with the final result. … Read More 

Bring Long-Term Concerns to the Bargaining Table

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It can be difficult to keep future concerns at the forefront of your company’s most important decisions. Fortunatly, research on intergenerational conflict has uncovered best practices for ensuring that you and your employees take the long view. … Read More 

International Negotiations: Threats at the Bargaining Table

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The agreement seemed well on its way to being passed. On November 20, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry announced that the United States and Afghanistan had finished negotiating a bilateral security agreement.  The terms included a continued American troop presence through 2024 and a promise of billions in international aid to the Afghan government. The … Read More 

Taking Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Too Far

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More and more companies are inserting alternative dispute resolution (ADR) clauses in their contracts with customers and vendors, and even in agreements with their own employees. ADR processes such as mediation and arbitration can be beneficial for all concerned if they help avoid the cost, delay, and uncertainty of going to court. Mediation, in particular, … Read More 

Negotiation Tips: A Value-Creation Checklist

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By following these tips in your next negotiation, you’ll improve your chances of meeting everyone’s interests. Before you sit down at the bargaining table, imagine a wide-range of options and packages, including some that may seem far-fetched. When talks begin, remember that getting down to business too quickly can stand in the way of building trust. Emphasize to … Read More 

Negotiating Two Steps Ahead of the ‘Fiscal Cliff’

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Program on Negotiation and Harvard Business School professor Deepak Malhotra recently sat down with CNBC to discuss the fiscal cliff and how Democrats and Republicans can not only complete their current negotiation successfully, but also their future negotiations. … Read More 

Are You an Overconfident Negotiator?

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In 1901, J.P. Morgan wanted to buy the Carnegie Steel Company from its founder, Andrew Carnegie. Carnegie was 65 years old and considering retirement. As Harold C. Livesay recounts in his book Andrew Carnegie and the Rise of Big Business (Little, Brown, 1975), when Carnegie finally decided he was ready to sell, he jotted down his … Read More 

Anchor Trials or Balloons in Conflict Resolution

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The power of anchors in negotiation has been demonstrated time and again. Sellers who demand more tend to get more. Indeed, the initial asking price is usually the best predictor of the final agreement. A trio of researchers may have found an important exception to this rule, however; lower starting numbers set by the seller in … Read More 

A Worse Deal than You Think?

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Most negotiators leave the bargaining table believing they were better at pushing the other side to its limit than was actually the case, according to recent experimental studies by Richard P. Larrick of Duke University and George Wu of the University of Chicago. … Read More 

When Umbrella Agreements Spring Leaks in Dispute Resolution

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Negotiators tend to want the best of both worlds. When reaching an agreement, they want to nail down parties’ respective rights and responsibilities, but they also want to retain the flexibility to deal with ever-changing business conditions. One solution to this apparent dilemma is to craft umbrella, or framework, agreements. (The term umbrella is more commonly … Read More 

When More is Less

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It’s an article of faith in negotiation that expanding the pie of value enhances the parties’ welfare. When there’s only one issue on the bargaining table, the size of the pie is fixed. If one party gets more, the other party gets less. But when multiple issues exist, negotiators can expand the size of the … Read More 

Taking ADR Too Far

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More and more companies are inserting alternative dispute resolution (ADR) clauses in their contracts with customers and vendors, and even in agreements with their own employees. ADR processes such as mediation and arbitration can be beneficial for all concerned if they help avoid the cost, delay, and uncertainty of going to court. Mediation, in particular, … Read More 

Leading Horses to Water

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The hardest step in negotiation is often the first. Costly lawsuits can drag on it everyone is afraid to be the first to blink. Prospective buyers and sellers can waste endless hours dancing around a possible deal. And in collective bargaining, labor and management teams sometimes paint themselves into corners by refusing to negotiate “matters … Read More 

Accounting for Outsiders in Your Negotiations

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If you’re in the middle of talks that seem to be going well, here’s a warning: consider the impact of the agreement on those who aren’t at the table, or suffer the consequences. That’s a lesson that Apple and some of the largest U.S. book publishers are currently learning the hard way. On April 12, the … Read More 

Finally, A Win-Win Deal from Congress

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To the surprise of many, Congress reached a bipartisan agreement on the 17th of February to extend payroll tax cuts and unemployment benefits. It was only the second time a House bill in the 112th Congress split roughly along party lines, according to the New York Times. Largely regarded as a coup for Congressional Democrats, … Read More 

Moving Forward in Mediation Together

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The teacher’s federation has qualms with the current education bill’s stipulations regarding the scheduling and terms for mediation between the federation and provincial government. The government is open to further negotiations, but refuses to offer more money. Susan Lambert, president of the British Columbia Teacher’s Federation, asserts that the government is acting in bad faith, … Read More 

When Others are Counting on You

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Unless your official title is “lawyer” or “agent” you probably don’t think of yourself as an agent. But if you’ve ever represented a family member, your boss, your department, or your organization in a negotiation, you’ve served as that party’s agent. Representing others at the bargaining table creates both opportunities and hazards. In their book, Negotiating … Read More 

Dealing with emotions during tough economic times

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A major measure of the economy is the prevailing mood. A bleak job market and less-than-rosy economic outlook influence how we feel in an organization. Tighter budgets and increased layoffs are causes for concern, and many of us respond with “fight or flight” behavior.  We defend our turf or avoid tense conversations in the hopes … Read More 

Have you negotiated the authority you need?

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Adapted from “Great Deal—But How Will It Play at the Office?” by Jeswald W. Salacuse (professor, Tufts University), first published in the Negotiation newsletter, October 2006. To close any deal, you not only have to reach agreement with the other side but also convince your own organization of the deal’s value. In fact, you may … Read More 

When advice to negotiators is wasted

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Adapted from “Is Giving Advice a Waste of Time?” first published in the Negotiation newsletter, July 2007. It’s the end of the week, and you’re trying to crank out an important report. A colleague slips into your office. “Do you have a couple of minutes?” he asks. “I need your advice on a negotiation that’s falling … Read More 

Bringing Mediators to the Bargaining Table

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Adapted from “Mediation in Transactional Negotiation,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter, July 2004. We generally think of mediation as a dispute-resolution device. Federal mediators intervene when collective bargaining bogs down. Diplomats are sometimes called in to mediate conflicts between nations. So-called multidoor courthouses encourage litigants to mediate before incurring the costs—and risks—of going to trial. Scott … Read More 

Negotiating for the Long Haul

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Adapted from “Take the Long View,” by Kimberly A. Wade-Benzoni (professor, Duke University), first published in the Negotiation newsletter, April 2006. Negotiators often overlook the long-term consequences of various issues on the table. Amid the pressures to meet short-term financial targets, it’s difficult to remember that the effects of managerial decisions may be felt years, even … Read More 

Did You Really Get a Great Deal?

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Adapted from “A Worse Deal Than You Think?” First published in the Negotiation newsletter, August 2006. Most negotiators leave the bargaining table believing they were better at pushing the other side to its limit than was actually the case, according to experimental studies by Richard P. Larrick of Duke University and George Wu of the University … Read More 

Reducing Negotiation Stress

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Adapted from “Poise under Pressure: The Well-Balanced Negotiator,” by Michael Wheeler (professor, Harvard Business School), first published in the Negotiation newsletter, December 2006. Too many people overlook the fact that negotiation is a demanding physical act. They cram for negotiations, pulling all-nighters in an attempt to master each and every detail—only to become irritable and fuzzy … Read More 

Learning from Negotiation Training

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Adapted from “Putting Negotiation Training to Work,” by Max H. Bazerman (professor, Harvard Business School), first published in the Negotiation newsletter. Many executives read books and newsletters to improve their negotiating skills. Many also take time out of their busy work lives to attend classes and training programs, including ones focused on negotiation. Their teachers pass … Read More 

When Negotiators Act Like Parasites

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Adapted from “Creating Values, Weighing Values,” by Max H. Bazerman (professor, Harvard Business School), first published in the Negotiation newsletter. In April 2001, the FTC filed a complaint accusing pharmaceutical companies Schering-Plough and Upsher-Smith of restricting trade. Upsher-Smith had been preparing to introduce a generic pharmaceutical product that would threaten a near monopoly held by Schering-Plough. … Read More 

Don’t get Lost in Translation

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Adapted from “Coping with Culture at the Bargaining Table,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. As if intercultural negotiations weren’t complicated enough, you may find yourself facing a language barrier. Whenever one party doesn’t speak the other party’s language well, you should consider hiring a translator (or one for each language, if necessary). The presence of translators … Read More 

When Two Cultures are Better Than One

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Adapted from “Coping with Culture at the Bargaining Table,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. Do you have firsthand experience navigating two cultures? Have you lived abroad for a significant period of time? Are you an immigrant, or were you raised by immigrants? If you are “bicultural,” you may be an especially adept negotiator, research suggests. Researchers … Read More 

How to Get to the Table

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Adapted from “Leading Horses to Water,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. The hardest step in negotiation is often the first. Costly lawsuits can drag on if everyone is afraid to be the first to blink. Prospective buyers and sellers can waste endless hours dancing around a possible deal. And in collective bargaining, labor and management … Read More 

Avoid the Green-eyed Monster

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Adapted from “Negotiating with the Green-eyed Monster,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. Envy can cause us to engage in deception at the bargaining table. That’s the cautionary finding of research by Simone Moran of Ben-Gurion University in Israel and Maurice E. Schweitzer of the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. Why might negotiators be more … Read More 

Who’s Looking Over Your Shoulder?

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Adapted from “Onlooker Alert!” First published in the Negotiation newsletter. Unless your official title is “lawyer” or “agent,” you probably don’t think of yourself as an agent. But if you’ve ever represented a family member, your boss, your department, or your organization in a negotiation, you’ve served as that party’s agent. Representing others at the bargaining table … Read More 

The Regretful Negotiator

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Adapted from “Second Thoughts,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. “Of all sad words of tongue or pen,” wrote the poet John Greenleaf Whittier, “the saddest are these: ‘It might have been.'” Many negotiators would second that sentiment. Regret can be a powerful emotion when a deal slips through our fingers or when we kick ourselves … Read More 

The Power of Schadenfreude

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Adapted from “Negotiating with the Green-eyed Monster,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. Envy can cause us to engage in deception at the bargaining table. That’s the cautionary finding of recent research by Simone Moran of Ben-Gurion University in Israel and Maurice E. Schweitzer of the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. In one experiment, Israeli … Read More 

Everyday Ingenuity

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Adapted from the Negotiation newsletter. Negotiation expert Roger Fisher sagely counsels, “Solutions are not the answer.” Instead of tossing demands back and forth on their way to an outcome, negotiators should focus on the process of exploring their underlying needs and interests. Get the process right, and practical solutions often follow. But process still depends on the … Read More 

Change the Trust Default

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Adapted from “How to Build Trust at the Bargaining Table,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. Carol’s longtime doctor diagnoses her with a serious illness and recommends immediate, aggressive treatment. Carol would like to seek a second opinion, but she doesn’t want to offend her doctor—who, after all, has always provided her with excellent care. Carol … Read More 

Culture and Communication

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Adapted from “Cultural Notes,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. As members of organizations and families, we all know from experience that even people with identical backgrounds can have vastly differing negotiating styles and values. Nonetheless, we continue to be intrigued by the idea that distinct patterns emerge between negotiators from different cultures. Researchers do confirm a … Read More 

Pull Ahead of the Pack

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Adapted from “Think You’re Powerless? Think Again,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. If your organization regularly bids for business, you may be accustomed to feeling like the weaker party, write Deepak Malhotra and Max H. Bazerman in their book Negotiation Genius: How to Overcome Obstacles and Achieve Brilliant Results at the Bargaining Table and Beyond … Read More 

Learn More From Your Deals

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Adapted from “Learning to Learn,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. Learning about a concept or technique is one thing. Actually putting new knowledge to work is quite another. The gap between “knowing” and “doing” is a challenge for managers who want to hone their effectiveness, whether through formal training or private reflection on their experience. Recent … Read More 

Are Your Talks too Complex?

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Adapted from “When More Is Less,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. It’s an article of faith in negotiation that expanding the pie of value enhances parties’ welfare. When there’s only one issue on the bargaining table, the size of the pie is fixed. If one party gets more, the other party must get less. But … Read More 

Should You Ignore a Threat

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Adapted from “Threat Response at the Bargaining Table,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. Consider how you would respond to threats and ultimatums such as these during a negotiation: • “If you try to back out, you’ll never work in this industry again.” • “Give us what we want, or we’ll see you in court.” • “That’s our final … Read More 

Find Strength in Numbers

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Adapted from “Make Your Weak Position Strong,” by Deepak Malhotra (professor, Harvard Business School), first published in the Negotiation newsletter. A common complaint among managers and executives who attend negotiation courses and seminars is that they don’t learn enough about negotiating from a position of weakness. What can you do when you have a weak BATNA, … Read More 

Caveat Emptor?

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Adapted from “Fair Enough? An Ethical Fitness Quiz for Negotiators,” by Michael Wheeler (professor, Harvard Business School), first published in the Negotiation newsletter. Imagine that you bought a rustic cabin at its asking price. Now flash-forward a few years. You’ve enjoyed the place immensely but just learned that a motorcycle racetrack will be up and running … Read More 

Choose Your Words

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Adapted from “Metaphorical Negotiation,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. Negotiators talk about building agreement, bluffing the opposition, and volleying offers back and forth. According to mediator Thomas Smith, careful attention to such metaphors can reveal deeper meaning beneath the explicit words that people use, notably regarding how they view the negotiation process and their relationship … Read More 

Keeping Your Options Alive

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Adapted from “Better or Best: Keeping Your Options Open,” by Michael Wheeler (professor, Harvard Business School), first published in the Negotiation newsletter. Jim, a well-regarded residential developer operating outside Philadelphia, has been scouting around for a site for his next project. Two properties seem promising. The Abbott estate consists of 75 acres of woodlands and some … Read More 

Questioning threats

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Adapted from “How to Defuse Threats at the Bargaining Table,” by Katie A. Liljenquist (professor, Brigham Young University) and Adam D. Galinsky (professor, Northwestern University), first published in the Negotiation newsletter. Sooner or later, every negotiator faces threats at the bargaining table. How should you respond when the other side threatens to walk away, file a … Read More 

Teams across cultures

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Adapted from “Team Negotiating: Strength in Numbers?”, first published in the Negotiation newsletter. According to conventional wisdom, when it comes to negotiation, there’s strength in numbers. Indeed, several experimental studies have supported the notion that you should bring at least one other person from your organization to the bargaining table if you can. On average, this … Read More 

Dropping anchors

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Adapted from “Anchors or Trial Balloons?”, first published in the Negotiation newsletter. The power of anchors in negotiation has been demonstrated time and again. Sellers who demand more tend to get more. Indeed, the initial asking price is usually the best predictor of the final agreement. A trio of researchers may have found an important exception … Read More 

Make more out of less

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Adapted from “When More Is Less,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter. It’s an article of faith in negotiation that expanding the pie of value enhances parties’ welfare. When there’s only one issue on the bargaining table, the size of the pie is fixed. If one party gets more, the other party must get less. But … Read More 

When We Expect Too Much

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How often have you heard a friend or colleague refer to a contract as being “in the bag,” only to find out later that the deal didn’t go through? There always turns out to be a good reason a negotiation fell apart. Yet the fact remains that most negotiators are overconfident about their chances of … Read More 

Should You Trust Your Agent?

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You’ve found a beautiful condo that you’d like to call your own. You conduct a thorough assess¬ment of its value and identify several other ap¬pealing properties in the same neighborhood and price range. Believing you’ve found the magic bid, you phone your real-estate agent. … Read More 

Are you afraid of commitment?

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Adapted from “Overcoming Stage Fright: How to Prepare for a Negotiation,” by Michael Wheeler (Professor, Harvard Business School), first published in the Negotiation newsletter.

Many negotiators grow anxious as they approach the bargaining table, a reaction that puts them in good company with other distinguished professionals. Laurence Olivier’s stage fright almost ended his acting … Read More 

Learning from the Soda Wars

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This past November, in an unusual move, Costco, the largest wholesale club in the United States, removed Coca-Cola products from its shelves and posted messages telling shoppers that Coke products would not be available until the company lowered its prices. … Read More 

Making the first move

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Adapted from “Should You Make the First Offer?” by Adam D. Galinsky (Professor, Northwestern University). First published in Negotiation Newsletter. Whether negotiators are bidding on a firm, seeking agreement on a compensation package, or bargaining over a used car, someone has to make the first offer. Should it be you, or should you wait to … Read More 

The upside of threats

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Negotiation researchers have long studied how to use “carrots”-promises of mutual gains-to induce agreement. Less attention has been given to “sticks,” specifically, the effectiveness of threats. Threats often have a negative connotation-understandably so, as they’ve often been associated with offers that can’t be refused or, in some cases, warnings of annihilation. But sometimes threats are justified. … Read More 

Negotiating Without Conditions

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Adapted from “Without Conditions:  The Case for Negotiating With the Enemy” by Deepak Malhotra. is Associate Professor at Harvard Business School and a co-author of Negotiation Genius: How to Overcome Obstacles and Achieve Brilliant Results at the Bargaining Table and Beyond. For the full article, visit Foreign Affairs. Diplomacy appears ready to make a comeback. The … Read More 

Negotiate how you’ll negotiate

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Adapted from “Have You Negotiated How You’ll Negotiate?” by Robert C. Bordone, Professor, and Gillien S. Todd, Lecturer, Harvard Law School. Breakdowns in negotiation are common. In the face of impasse at the bargaining table, managers are quick to blame either the challenges of the issues being negotiated or the hard-line tactics of the opposing parties. … Read More 

Dealing with choice overload

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When it comes to offering and considering choices in a negotiation, the more the better, right? In fact, the presence of too many options may actually hamper people from coming to any agreement. A study from the decision-making realm supports this conclusion. Draeger’s Market in Menlo Park, Calif., is renowned for its wide selection of gourmet … Read More 

Be sure to give at the office

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Reciprocation tactics are tried and true. Politicians “logroll” votes on pet projects, companies offer free product samples to consumers, and charitable organizations include small gifts when soliciting donations. According to the norm of reciprocity, if you’re nice to me, I’ll be nice in return, and vice versa. In the realm of negotiation, you can gain many … Read More 

Coping with cultural differences

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Have you ever found yourself negotiating with people from other cultures, whether at home or abroad?  If so, did you try to adapt your negotiating style to fit the other person or team’s culture, and if so, how? Most negotiators understand that cultural differences are likely to be a factor in negotiations. Unfortunately, many negotiators actually … Read More 

Why We Strike

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What happens when disputants feel like they have invested too much in a conflict to back down? There are a number of reasons that negotiations fail and lead to protracted strikes, often to the detriment of both parties. Both sides frequently believe that their case is stronger due to overconfidence. If one side doubts the other’s claims … Read More