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.


benefits of negotiation

What are the Benefits of Negotiation?

The benefits of negotiation are numerous. Here are some of the most common of those benefits. 

People often view negotiation as a win-lose enterprise, but in most situations, a win-win mindset will lead to greater benefits of negotiation. Adding issues to the discussion is often the key to value creation and a great deal. For example, in a corporate negotiation about a merger, in addition to discussing valuation and price, parties can discuss personnel issues, headquarters location, long-term strategic plans, and so on. Then explore tradeoffs based on each party’s preferences. 

In integrative negotiations involving multiple issues, as compared to distributive negotiations involving just one issue, parties often achieve the benefits of negotiation by making wise tradeoffs across their differing preferences across issues. Consider the simple case of a couple that is trying to decide how to spend their evening on the town. If one member cares more about what movie they see, and the other cares more about where they have dinner, each can make concessions on an issue of low value in exchange for a concession on an issue he or he values more.

You can also get the benefits of negotiation in a distributive negotiation, where there is likely only one issue at stake, typically price. Once you get a sense of each party’s reservation point and BATNA, you should be able to determine if a zone of possible agreement, or ZOPA, exists in your distributive negotiation. The ZOPA is the range of all possible deals that both parties would accept. 

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.

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 benefits of negotiation:

5 Types of Negotiation Skills

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Businesspeople who are looking for effective negotiation strategies often confront a dizzying array of advice. It can be useful to take a step back and categorize these strategies into various types of negotiation tactics. Highlighting the benefits of negotiation in business, the following five types of negotiation tactics can help you think more broadly about … Read More 

Effective Negotiation Strategies for Dealing with Competitors

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Negotiation Skills.

In the business world, organizations take competition for granted, to the extent that they often overlook opportunities to meet their goals by working with one another. But the benefits of negotiation in business can extend to our dealings with competitors. Recent high-profile negotiations highlight three effective negotiation strategies competitors can use to cooperate and compete. … Read More 

Deceptive Tactics in Negotiation: How to Ward Them Off

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Deceptive tactics in negotiation can run rampant: parties “stretch” the numbers, conceal key information, and make promises they know they can’t keep. The benefits of negotiation in business offer strong incentives to detect these behaviors. Unfortunately, however, most of us are very poor lie detectors. Even professionals who encounter liars regularly, such as police officers and … Read More 

Videoconferencing in Business Negotiation

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Business Negotiations.

With face-to-face negotiations currently hazardous to our health, businesspeople across the world have switched to Zoom meetings, Skype calls, Google Hangouts, and other forms of videoconferencing. In addition to enabling social distancing, videoconferencing seems at first glance to have all the advantages of in-person meetings. It eliminates the costs of meeting face to face, including … Read More 

Negotiation Best Practices for Business Competitors

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Industry rivals often struggle to engage in negotiation best practices, balancing profit maximization through competition with industry-strengthening cooperative moves. Become overly competitive, and firms risk fostering conflict and constricting innovation. Collaborate in the wrong ways, and they could cut ethical corners or even break the law. When an industry is struggling, this balance can be especially … Read More 

Positional Bargaining Pitfalls

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Negotiation Skills.

When they think of negotiation, many people imagine a positional bargaining scenario where two people are haggling back-and-forth over the price of an item, both refusing to budge. In positional bargaining, “each side takes a position, argues for it, and makes concessions to reach a compromise,” write Roger Fisher, William Ury, and Bruce Patton in … Read More 

Online Negotiation Strategies: Email and Videoconferencing

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Online negotiation has become ubiquitous, as it allows us to negotiate across the miles cheaply and quickly. Yet online negotiation creates special challenges. With email, instant messaging, and text messages, negotiators typically lack visual, verbal, and other sensory cues to interpret how their counterpart is feeling. And while videoconferencing—via Skype, Google Hangouts, and so on—adds … Read More 

In Preparation for Negotiation, Choose the Right Process

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

In preparation for negotiation, sellers face a choice between negotiating one on one with buyers, holding an auction, or combining elements of both processes. Consider the different paths that Amazon and Apple followed in 2017 when each began scouting locations for a new campus: 

Dangling the prospect of a $5 billion campus and about 50,000 jobs, … Read More 

How Body Language Affects Negotiation

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Experts typically advise us to study our counterparts’ body language in negotiation and to be aware of our own body language. What, exactly, can we learn from others’ nonverbal behavior? And how can we modify our own nonverbal behavior to increase our negotiation success? We analyze three scenarios to help you understand how body language … Read More 

Negotiate a Deal that Lasts

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

When trying to negotiate a deal with a potential business partner, you need to come up with a plan for ensuring the two sides will mesh rather than clash. Facebook’s leaders and WhatsApp’s founders appeared to skip that vital step when negotiating the social media giant’s purchase of the text-messaging app in 2014—an oversight that … Read More 

ESL Negotiation: Avoid Confusion and Conflict

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Negotiation Skills.

“The language of international business,” a British executive once said to Tufts University professor Jeswald Salacuse, “is broken English.” The observation is rooted in the fact that most international business and diplomacy is conducted in English, Salacuse writes in his book Negotiating Life: Secrets for Everyday Diplomacy and Deal Making (Palgrave Macmillan, 2013). … Read More 

A Contingent Agreement Can Allow Negotiators to Agree to Disagree

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Negotiators often try to overcome their differences of opinion about how future events will unfold through persuasion techniques. A more fruitful approach might be to “bet” on your differing views with a contingent agreement. By adding incentives or penalties based on future performance to your contract, you protect both parties against risk. … Read More 

Announcing the 2012-2013 PON Graduate Research Fellows

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Daily, Graduate Research Fellowships, PON Graduate Research Fellowships, Students.

The Program on Negotiation Graduate Research Fellowships are designed to encourage young scholars from the social sciences and professional disciplines to pursue theoretical, empirical, and/or applied research in negotiation and dispute resolution. Consistent with the PON goal of fostering the development of the next generation of scholars, this program provides support for one year of … Read More