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business negotiators

Negotiators who specialize in the dynamics underlying corporate negotiations.

The following items are tagged business negotiators:

Negotiation Tactics for Bargaining with Difficult People: The Comcast Merger

Posted by & filed under Dealing with Difficult People.

If a competitive bargaining session shifts in a counterpart’s direction, your anger could send the wrong signals to your negotiation counterpart. In this instance, strong emotions portray desperation rather than strength. Here are some bargaining and negotiation tactics for dealing with difficult situations in relationships. … Read More 

5 Win-Win Negotiation Strategies

Posted by & filed under Win-Win Negotiations.

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 

10 Popular Business Negotiation Articles

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

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 

What Is an Umbrella Agreement?

Posted by & filed under Dispute Resolution.

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 

Using Body Language in Negotiation

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

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 

Top International Negotiation Case Studies in Business: The Microsoft-Nokia Deal

Posted by & filed under International Negotiation.

International negotiation brings on more challenges than most. On September 3, 2013, Microsoft announced a deal to acquire Finnish mobile phone company Nokia’s handset and services business for $7.2 billion, the New York Times reported. The agreement marked a belated but bold move by Microsoft to upgrade its presence in handheld devices and signals an … Read More 

Writing the Negotiated Agreement

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

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 

Lessons for Business Negotiators: Negotiation Techniques from International Diplomacy

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

Executives rarely view themselves as diplomats engaged in international diplomacy but business negotiators often find the two fields share negotiation skills and negotiation techniques. Rightly or wrongly, diplomacy evokes images of frivolity – days spent wandering exotic capitals, nights spent cruising embassy cocktail parties. … Read More 

How to Negotiate a Business Deal

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

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 

The Pitfalls of Negotiations Over Email

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

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 

Police Negotiation Techniques from the NYPD Crisis Negotiations Team

Posted by & filed under Crisis Negotiations.

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 

The Importance of a Relationship in Negotiation

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Training.

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 Crisis Management in Negotiation?

Posted by & filed under Crisis Negotiations.

Organizations often establish elaborate business crisis management plans. Through a rapid, centralized response, an organization can shift swiftly and efficiently from day-to-day operations into crisis-management mode, whether that crisis involves a building evacuation, a tumble in the company’s stock price, or a product recall. … Read More 

Managing Difficult Negotiators

Posted by & filed under BATNA.

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 

Fairness in Negotiation

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

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 

Top Ten Posts About Conflict Resolution

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

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 

Essential Negotiation Skills: Limiting Cognitive Bias in Negotiation

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

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 

How Does Mediation Work in a Lawsuit?

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

No one likes to go to court. Not only is it expensive and time-consuming, but it often leads to frustrating results and damaged relationships. So, how does mediation work in a lawsuit and is legal mediation a better route? … Read More 

5 Common Negotiation Mistakes and How You Can Avoid Them

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

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 

Top 10 Notable Negotiations

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

In 2017, all eyes were on Washington as a president with a reputation as a dealmaker entered the White House. The following negotiations from the past year, both inside and outside of politics, caught our eye due to the broader lessons they offer business negotiators. … Read More 

Conflict-Solving Strategies: The Value of Taking a Break

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

Business negotiators coping with deeply entrenched conflict often feel defeated and hopeless when conflict-solving strategies fail. However, research from the world of international conflict suggests that taking repeated breaks from conflict can improve the odds of reaching agreement down the road. The research and resulting negotiation strategies may offer new hope to business negotiators. … Read More 

Negotiation Strategies for Dealing with Spoilers

Posted by & filed under BATNA.

Amazon’s announcement on February 14 that it was backing out of a recent deal to build a major new campus in New York City was as bitter as a Valentine’s Day breakup could be. But the budding relationship between Amazon and New York didn’t have to end in acrimony and broken dreams, Harvard Business School … Read More 

How to Negotiate with Difficult People: International Negotiation, and a Refusal to Communicate

Posted by & filed under International Negotiation.

Business negotiators sometimes face the difficult question of whether to negotiate with someone they believe to be immoral, untrustworthy, or otherwise undesirable as a negotiating partner. In his book Bargaining with the Devil: When to Negotiate, When to Fight (Simon & Schuster, 2011), Program on Negotiation chair Robert Mnookin offers negotiation advice on the complex … Read More 

Corporate Negotiation Pitfalls: The Case of Facebook

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

In corporate negotiation, negotiators often care most about getting the best price possible, assessing the other party’s ability to follow through, and closing the deal. Unfortunately, such business preoccupations can lead dealmakers to overlook potential ethical concerns, as current negotiations in the news often attest. Examining some of Facebook’s recent corporate negotiation mistakes, we describe … Read More 

Negotiating Skills: How to Bargain “Behind the Table”

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

After the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, U.S. president George H. W. Bush and his secretary of state, James Baker, were eager to win international support for German reunification and German membership in NATO. But Soviet president Mikhail Gorbachev faced strong opposition to these measures from members of his own Communist Party. Both … Read More 

Coming Up with Win-Win Solutions at the Bargaining Table

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

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 

Negotiate Business Contracts that Last

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

After engaging in the complex process of business negotiation, business negotiators are often happy to pass off the technicalities of deal drafting to their attorneys. Unfortunately, this handoff is prone to errors. Vague, contradictory, and missing deal terms are not uncommon, and they can lead to serious problems during the implementation stage, according to Harvard … Read More 

In Business Negotiations, Eat Before You Negotiate

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

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 

Dispute Resolution for India and Bangladesh

Posted by & filed under International Negotiation.

Sometimes in international negotiation, disputes are left to fester for years, even decades, until parties decide there is something to be gained from reaching agreement. In an example of a cross cultural negotiation case study, the nations of Bangladesh and India seized on an opportunity to push the “restart” button on their bumpy relationship by … Read More 

Negotiation research you can use: Should you brandish your BATNA?

Posted by & filed under BATNA.

On August 23, the British government unveiled an initial set of contingency plans for exiting the European Union (E.U.) in the event the so-called Brexit negotiations end in impasse. Brexit negotiations have been slow and contentious, stymied most recently by infighting within factions of the British government about how closely to bind the nation’s economy … Read More 

Dealing with Difficult People? Negotiation Lessons from Ronald Reagan

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

In recent months, U.S. President Barack Obama and other world leaders have struggled to find a winning strategy to convince Russian President Vladimir Putin to back away from his aggressions toward Ukraine. In a Wall Street Journal editorial, Ken Adelman, U.S. President Ronald Reagan’s ambassador to the United Nations and arms-control director, writes that recently … 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 

How to Negotiate Under Pressure

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

At the time, it seemed to be an example of coolheaded dealmaking in the midst of disaster. In 2009, hit hard by the 2008 financial crisis and changes in consumer preferences, U.S. automaker Chrysler was on the brink of collapse, and the Treasury Department stepped in to do a deal. In exchange for about $12 … Read More 

Conflict and Negotiation Case Study: Long-Term Business Partnerships and Negotiated Agreements

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

To protect the future interests of their organization, negotiators sometimes must accept fewer benefits or absorb greater burdens in the short run to maximize the value to all relevant parties – including future employees and shareholders – over time. Suppose that the operations VPs of two subsidiaries of an energy company are preparing to negotiate the … Read More 

When Conflict Becomes a Self-Fulfilling Prophecy

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

When one party brings up the possibility of a lawsuit in a business dispute, the threat can become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Yet business negotiators often benefit from settling their disputes before going to court, write Robert H. Mnookin, Scott R. Peppet, and Andrew S. Tulumello in their book Beyond Winning: Negotiating to Create Value in … Read More 

When agreements fall apart

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

In early June, the New York Times reported that since at least 2010, Facebook has negotiated more than 60 data-sharing partnerships with hardware manufacturers such as Apple and Samsung, as well as four Chinese companies. One of the deals gave access to data on Facebook users to Huawei, a Chinese telecommunications company that U.S. intelligence … Read More 

How to Write a Contract that Lasts

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

Joint ventures, strategic alliances, purchasing agreements, and other types of partnerships between organizations often begin with a great deal of promise—and a hefty amount of risk. Serious misunderstandings and opportunistic behavior are relatively common in such relationships. Formal contracts offer a method for reducing such risk, but negotiators and their attorneys are often unsure about … Read More 

Deal Design: Strategies for Complex Dealmaking

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

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 

Negotiation research you can use: To curb dishonesty in negotiation, confront “paranoid pessimism”

Posted by & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

Business negotiators often worry about being deceived, and understandably so. The potential for being lied to or swindled can be high in negotiation, given that our counterparts typically have access to information about preferences, alternatives, product quality, and so on, that we lack. Yet research shows that negotiators often behave honestly even when doing so costs them money. Interestingly, … Read More 

For Better Negotiation Training, Study the U.S. Government’s Mistakes

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Training.

Business professionals seeking to improve their negotiation training can learn a great deal from the mistakes made in newsworthy negotiations. To take one recent example, Steven M. Davidoff of the New York Times’ “DealBook” recently analyzed how the U.S. governments rushed negotiations to save U.S. automaker Chrysler led to a costly long-term problem. … Read More 

Negotiation research you can use: The pitfalls of put-downs: When “trash talk” backfires

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

“Rocket Man.” “Little Marco.” “Crooked Hillary.” “Sloppy Steve.” These are just a few of the mocking nicknames that President Donald Trump has given to his perceived rivals. Trump seems to have a penchant for trash talk—which psychologists define as boastful comments about oneself or insulting comments about an opponent delivered before or during a competition—but he’s … Read More 

Mediation Used in Dispute Resolution Over Art Museums

Posted by & filed under Mediation.

When partners are negotiating a new business deal, overconfidence can lead them to overlook the possibility that the business will fail or otherwise struggle. Wise negotiators envision not only the best-case scenario, but the worst-case scenario, and prepare for it before signing on the dotted line. … Read More 

A Dealmaking President’s Opening Moves

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

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 

10 Top Business Negotiations

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

Looking back on the past, 2013 witnessed a series of colorful mergers, acquisitions, and other deals. Here are the 10 top negotiations and negotiation trends of that year from which business dealmakers can learn. … Read More 

How to Conduct a Mediation During Crisis Negotiations

Posted by & filed under Mediation.

The most difficult peace negotiations in recent decades—in Ireland, the Middle East, the former Yugoslavia, and Sri Lanka—were plagued by a common enemy: violent disruptions by spoilers opposed to the peace process. In each of these cases, extremists stalled negotiations by creating security crises that divided public opinion and drove negotiators apart. … Read More 

Negotiation in the News: In Oregon standoff, allies of occupiers broker a resolution

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

How can you end a conflict with someone who doesn’t trust you? Consider bringing in someone the other party does trust to mediate the dispute, as the FBI and the occupiers of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon did to promote a peaceful end to their standoff this past February. Strategic patience On January 2, an … Read More 

For Kesha, Support of Peers Could Bring Settlement Leverage

Posted by & filed under Dispute Resolution.

Business negotiators are typically advised to keep their dealmaking and dispute resolution efforts private. Complaining about an adversary’s negotiation and conflict resolution strategies to the press or on social media can escalate disputes and increase the likelihood of impasse. Yet when a negotiation becomes so contentious that it requires formal dispute resolution, such as a lawsuit, … Read More 

New Strategies for Your Multiparty Negotiation Toolkit

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

“Confessionals.” “Informal informals.” “Indabas.” Delegates from the 196 nations participating in the U.N. Climate Change Conference, held in Paris at the end of 2015, cycled through an eclectic variety of negotiating formats in their race to make binding commitments to lower greenhouse-gas emissions. According to media reports, the participants’ willingness to shake up the complex … Read More 

In Business Negotiations, Set the Stage for Success

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

In negotiation, it’s said, preparation is key. Without careful research and logistical planning, we may be left trying to skate by on wits and charm alone—and in today’s business world, they will seldom carry us far. Advance work is especially critical when you expect your talks to be complex, involving numerous issues, multiple parties, and plenty … Read More 

In The Simpsons Dealmaking, Harry Shearer Goes Public

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

How did actor Henry Shearer and the producers of the hit television show The Simpsons arrive at a win-win negotiated agreement? In this article drawn from examples of negotiation in real life, we examine the negotiations between the actor and the producers and offer insights into the bargaining strategies employed by each. … Read More 

Trying to Come to Terms with an Adversary?

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

A string of recent deals between longtime opponents could give you the inspiration you need to reach agreement with your most difficult partners. Republicans and Democrats. North and South Korea. The United States and China. All of these pairs have a reputation for conflict, rivalry, and impasse. Yet despite their ongoing differences, each pair recently managed … Read More 

In Negotiation, Display Anger with Caution

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Virtually all of us experience feelings of anger from time to time during our negotiations. Past research findings reassured business negotiators that their displays of anger could benefit them by conveying toughness and motivating their counterparts to make concessions. But a new research study by professors Hajo Adam of Rice University and Jeanne M. Brett … Read More 

To Reduce Post-Deal Regret, Take an Analytical Approach

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

Dissatisfied with her first book contract, comedian Amy Schumer canceled it and negotiated a different one. A better strategy? Lessen your odds of disappointment from the start. In 2012, David Hirshey, senior vice president and executive editor of publisher HarperCollins, saw Amy Schumer’s stand-up comedy act and was so impressed by the rising star that he offered … Read More 

Building Momentum Through Goodwill Gestures

Posted by & filed under Dealing with Difficult People.

Sometimes disputes are left to fester for years, even decades, until parties decide there is something to be gained from reaching agreement. The nations of Bangladesh and India recently seized on an opportunity to push the “restart” button on their bumpy relationship by resolving one such ongoing dispute. Living in no man’s land Until recently, on each … Read More 

Working on multiple deals? Look for ways to connect the dots

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

In negotiation, lightbulb moments—the kind that seem to magically dissolve disputes and create stellar contracts—can be few and far between. We might be lucky to have one such flash of insight over the course of a complicated dealmaking process. Recently, Major League Baseball’s (MLB’s) New York Yankees were fortunate to experience a breakthrough that neatly … Read More 

Finding common ground in international negotiation

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

It’s difficult to think of negotiations with higher stakes than those surrounding nuclear nonproliferation. Often conducted amid international conflicts and public scrutiny, complicated by language and cultural barriers, and carried out under tight deadlines, talks aimed at ensuring that nuclear technology is used peacefully and that disarmament procedures are followed closely demand the highest level … Read More 

First, Put Yourself In Their Shoes

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

When parties can trade on their preferences across different issues, they reduce the need to haggle over price and percentages. To resolve deep-seated conflicts and reach agreement with adversaries, former U.S. secretary of state Madeleine Albright advises close observation and perspective taking. At a recent event on the Harvard University campus, former U.S. secretary of state Madeleine … Read More 

When armed with negotiating power, use it wisely

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

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 

Stop outsiders from sabotaging your deal

Posted by & filed under International Negotiation.

A deal had been a long time coming. Back in November 2013, Iran agreed to limit its nuclear enrichment program in exchange for lighter economic sanctions from Western nations. To hammer out the details, Iran entered into talks with six nations: China, Russia, France, Germany, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Eventually, the talks … Read More 

Negotiation Research You Can Use: Two new studies look at how our emotions affected negotiated outcomes

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

Feeling ambivalent in negotiation? No worries  Business negotiators often find themselves feeling positive and negative emotions simultaneously, such as concern that an offer won’t be received well and excitement over the offer’s potential. We often try to squelch our emotions for fear of appearing unstable or vulnerable. Indeed, past research has suggested that expressions of emotional ambivalence—the signs … Read More 

Getting past “You go first”

Posted by & filed under Win-Win Negotiations.

In our easiest professional negotiations, we have ample resources to divide among us, and everyone involved expects to benefit in both the short term and the long term from a deal. Unfortunately, there are also times when reaching common ground would require significant sacrifices from everyone involved. The temptation in such situations is to stonewall … Read More 

To Avoid the Need for Dispute Resolution, Plan Ahead

Posted by & filed under Dispute Resolution.

When disputes flare up in business relationships, a failure to thoroughly anticipate and prepare for the future is often to blame. Consider a dispute that has arisen surrounding the estate of Maurice Sendak, the acclaimed children’s book author and illustrator of dozens of books, including the masterpiece Where the Wild Things Are. As Randy Kennedy … Read More 

Stay “in the deal”

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

As Joe Biden tells it, he never wanted to be vice president. When Barack Obama asked him to consider being vetted as his running mate, Biden declined. Traditionally, the vice presidency was a largely ceremonial position removed from the center of power. Though recent VPs, most notably Dick Cheney, had changed that, Biden, as a longtime … Read More 

In the NFL, Roger Goodell’s Dealmaking for Mutual Gains

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

Because an agent’s incentives are rarely, if ever, perfectly aligned with those of her principal (principal-agent theory), many business negotiators have been burned by agents who put their own interests first. Agents in many fields, for example, have a motivation to close deals quickly – rather than for the best price – and earn quick … Read More 

To harness your power, consider a coalition

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

On June 27, members of the so-called Gang of Eight took to the floor of the U.S. Senate to make their final arguments for the sweeping immigration bill they had negotiated and promoted for months. After Republican senator Marco Rubio of Florida finished his remarks, the other members of his coalition flocked to him, patting … Read More 

How to Deal When the Going Gets Tough

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

Most business negotiators understand that by working collaboratively with their counterparts while also advocating strongly on their own behalf, they can build agreements and longterm relationships that benefit both sides. During times of economic hardship, however, many negotiators abandon their commitment to cooperation and mutual gains. Instead, they fall back on competitive tactics, threatening the other … Read More 

Cooperation in Congress? Liberals and Libertarians Polish Their Negotiation Skills

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

On June 19, Republican Representative Thomas Massie of Kentucky, a libertarian, teamed up with two liberal Democrats, Zoe Lofgren of California and Rush D. Holt of New Jersey, to push through an amendment that places new prohibitions on the National Security Agency and the CIA’s surveillance operations, including barring the agencies from engaging in warrantless … Read More 

Build strong relationships in business negotiations

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

While a student at Stanford University in the mid-2000s, Kevin Systrom met Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg at gatherings on campus. Though Systrom declined Zuckerberg’s proposal that he drop out of school and take a job with Facebook, the two men kept in touch by phone in the years following. After Systrom launched photo-sharing … Read More 

How to win at win-win negotiation

Posted by & filed under Win-Win Negotiations.

When parties to a negotiation can’t seem to find common ground, it sometimes seems as if the only solution is “winner take all.” Consider the decade-long campaign by the backers of the Cape Wind project to build the first offshore wind farm in the United States off the coast of Massachusetts in Nantucket Sound. Led by … Read More 

For Detroit Pensioners, Dispute Resolution Pays Off

Posted by & filed under Dispute Resolution.

On April 15, Detroit city employees and retirees breathed a huge sigh of relief after the city’s emergency manager and its pension fund managers reached a deal that would significantly reduce proposed cuts to pension benefits, CNNMoney reports. Some civilian workers will face a 4.5% reduction in pensions and lose cost-of-living adjustments. Retired public-safety workers … Read More 

Bringing Congress back to the negotiating table

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

“I’ve always had a Republican partner, every time,” says former Democratic senator Chris Dodd, speaking of his legislative victories during his 30 years of service. Members of Congress do not always need bipartisan support to push through their legislative agendas, yet some of the most significant initiatives passed by the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives … Read More 

Nelson Mandela: Lessons from a “master negotiator”

Posted by & filed under Leadership Skills.

Some people learn to negotiate on the job, in a classroom, or in a therapist’s office. In Nelson Mandela’s case, “prison taught him to be a master negotiator,” writes Bill Keller in his New York Times obituary of the legendary activist-turned-president, who died on December 5 of last year. Soon after his arrival at South Africa’s … Read More 

Negotiating in the heat of the moment

Posted by & filed under Crisis Negotiations.

At the time, it seemed to be an example of coolheaded dealmaking in the midst of disaster. In 2009, hit hard by the 2008 financial crisis and changes in consumer preferences, U.S. automaker Chrysler was on the brink of collapse, and the Treasury Department stepped in to do a deal. In exchange for about $12 … Read More 

Launch successful business partnerships

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

On November 20, 2012, just a year after its $11.1 billion purchase of British data company Autonomy, high-tech giant Hewlett-Packard (HP) announced that it was taking an $8.8 billion write-down and a huge quarterly loss in connection with the deal. According to HP CEO Meg Whitman, a lengthy investigation by HP had determined that Autonomy … Read More 

Resolving Conflicts on the High Seas

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

In negotiation over a limited pool of resources, conflicts often spring up over what constitutes a fair agreement. If two business partners are going their separate ways, they might have different ideas about how their shared assets should be divided, for example. Currently, such a dispute is playing out between China and four of its … Read More 

Too Many Parties at the Table? Try a Side Deal

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

When a large number of parties is involved in jointly hammering out a deal or dispute, agreement can be elusive, as illustrated by the failure of recent global climate change negotiations. The difficulty of coordinating a wide range of perspectives and interests often results in delays, disagreement, and impasse. In the article, “Too Big to Succeed? … Read More 

Hardball tactics from a major leaguer

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

Adapted from “Becoming a Team Player: Lessons from Professional Athletics,” first published in the Negotiation newsletter, October 2009. In Major League Baseball (MLB), one particular player’s agent is widely blamed for the contentious nature of contract negotiations: Scott Boras. Boras has negotiated unprecedented contracts for many of the most highly paid players, including Manny Ramirez, Johnny … Read More