Guhan Subramanian

The following items are tagged Guhan Subramanian:

Secrets of Successful Dealmaking

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

Course Dates: June 2020 – Exact Dates TBD In corporate dealmaking, much of the action happens away from the negotiating table. Successful dealmakers understand that deal set-up and design greatly influence negotiation outcomes. In this program, you will examine the legal, tactical, and structural elements of dealmaking and acquire practical skills and techniques for navigating difficult … Read More 

Negotiation Master Class Spring 2019 Program Guide

Posted by & filed under Free Report.

Over the years thousands of professional 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 

Communicate Your Interests Behind the Deal

Posted by & filed under Mediation.

As integrative negotiations students know well, focusing on interests in negotiation has proven to be the most reliable way to create value and resolve conflicts. Experience indicates that communicating with your lawyers the motivations behind a deal or negotiated agreement is well worth the time. … Read More 

Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems BR

Posted by & filed under executive training, Negotiation and Leadership (3 and 1 Day Courses).

Negotiation and Leadership Dealing With Difficult People and Problems Spring sessions: April 16–18 | May 14–16 | June 18–20 2018 Fall sessions: September 24–26 | October 15–17 | December 3–5 2018 Focused one-day sessions Spring sessions: April 19, 2018 | May 17, 2018 | June 21, 2018 Fall sessions: September 27, | October 18, | December 6, 2018

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6 Bargaining Tips and BATNA Essentials

Posted by & filed under BATNA.

The best bargaining tips taught by the experts should offer ways to enhance your bargaining power in negotiation. To do this, you must cultivate a strong BATNA, or best alternative to a negotiated agreement. The more appealing your best alternative is, the more comfortable you will feel asking for more in your current negotiation—secure in … Read More 

Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems AQ

Posted by & filed under executive training, Negotiation and Leadership (3 and 1 Day Courses).

Negotiation and Leadership Dealing With Difficult People and Problems Spring sessions: April 16–18 | May 14–16 | June 18–20 2018 Fall sessions: September 24–26 | October 15–17 | December 3–5 2018 Focused one-day sessions Spring sessions: April 19, 2018 | May 17, 2018 | June 21, 2018 Fall sessions: September 27, | October 18, | December 6, 2018

.embed-container { position: relative; padding-bottom: 56.25%; height: 0; … Read More 

Negotiation and Leadership NL P

Posted by & filed under executive training, Negotiation and Leadership (3 and 1 Day Courses).

It’s often said that great leaders are great negotiators. But how does one become an effective negotiator? On-the-job experience certainly plays a role, but for most executives, taking their negotiation skills to the next level requires outside training. Designed to accelerate your negotiation capabilities, Negotiation and Leadership examines core decision-making challenges, analyzes complex negotiation scenarios, … 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 

Negotiation and Leadership NL O

Posted by & filed under executive training, Negotiation and Leadership (3 and 1 Day Courses).

It’s often said that great leaders are great negotiators. But how does one become an effective negotiator? On-the-job experience certainly plays a role, but for most executives, taking their negotiation skills to the next level requires outside training. Designed to accelerate your negotiation capabilities, Negotiation and Leadership examines core decision-making challenges, analyzes complex negotiation scenarios, … Read More 

How to Create Win-Win Situations

Posted by & filed under Win-Win Negotiations.

In business negotiation, a win-win agreement may be the ultimate goal, but it can sometimes prove elusive. Here, we offer four strategies from experts at the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School on how to create win-win situations in even the trickiest negotiations. … Read More 

Harvard Negotiation Master Class: Advanced Strategies for Experienced Negotiators – November 11-13

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 

7 Tips for Closing the Deal in Negotiations

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

“ABC: Always Be Closing.” That’s the sales strategy that actor Alec Baldwin’s character Blake shared in the 1992 film Glengarry Glen Ross as he tried to motivate a group of real estate salesmen. In his verbally abusive, profanity-laced speech, Blake presented a ruthless model of closing a business deal that ignores customers’ needs and cuts … Read More 

Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems

Posted by & filed under executive training, Negotiation and Leadership (3 and 1 Day Courses).

Negotiation and Leadership Dealing With Difficult People and Problems Fall: December 5-7, 2016 Spring: April 18-20, 2017 | May 15-17, 2017 | June 19-21 2017

Become a More Effective Negotiator Great leaders are great negotiators. By equipping you with the innovative negotiation strategies you need to excel at the bargaining table, Negotiation and Leadership will help you:

Improve working relationships and resolve seemingly … Read More 

5 Good Negotiation Techniques

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

You’ve mastered the basics of good negotiation techniques: you prepare thoroughly, take time to build rapport, make the first offer when you have a strong sense of the bargaining range, and search for wise tradeoffs across issues to create value. Now, it’s time to absorb five lesser-known but similarly effective negotiation topics and techniques that … Read More 

Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems

Posted by & filed under executive training, Negotiation and Leadership (3 and 1 Day Courses).

It’s often said that great leaders are great negotiators. But how does one become an effective negotiator? On-the-job experience certainly plays a role, but for most executives, taking their negotiation skills to the next level requires outside training. Designed to accelerate your negotiation capabilities, Negotiation and Leadership examines core decision-making challenges, analyzes complex negotiation scenarios, … 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 

Must-Read Negotiation Books for 2019

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Training.

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 

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 

What is Anchoring in Negotiation?

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

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 

Right of First Refusal for Real Estate

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

If you are interested in buying the property you’re renting, but aren’t able to do so immediately, you may benefit by negotiating a right of first refusal from the property owner. A right of first refusal for real estate can create value for buyers and sellers alike. But what is “right of first refusal” in … Read More 

Case Study of Business Negotiations and Deal Making: Giving Voice to Negotiators Away from the Bargaining Table

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

Sometimes negotiators focus too much on the bargaining session at hand, to the detriment of bargainers away from the negotiation table, a group whose concerns and input is just as valid as those of the negotiators themselves. Here are some negotiation tips to help make sure your bargaining strategies include the voices and concerns of … Read More 

Does Small Talk in Negotiation Offer Big Gains?

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

According to conventional wisdom, small talk builds rapport and gets both sides a better deal in the end. But in fact, the question of whether to engage in small talk can be highly context-specific. New York City investment bankers, for example, tend to be far less likely than Texas oil executives to engage in small … 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 

Business Negotiation Skills: How to Deal with a Failing Business Partnership

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

It had seemed like the beginning of a fruitful relationship. In April 2012, six wealthy businessmen teamed up to buy the Philadelphia Inquirer and several affiliated businesses for $61.1 million, promising to work together to reverse the newspaper’s flagging fortunes. Their infusions of cash and appointment of a Pulitzer Prize–winning reporter, William K. Marimow, as … 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 

How to Defend Against “Scope Creep” at the Negotiation Table

Posted by & filed under Win-Win Negotiations.

The following question was asked of Negotiation Coach and PON faculty member Guhan Subramanian in the February 2014 issue of the Negotiation Briefings newsletter: Question: I run a small consulting firm that has a services contract with a major multinational corporation. The team we work with has a bad habit of continually adding items to the … Read More 

Negotiation in the News: The Amazon–Whole Foods merger: Scoring a table for two in a crowded field

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

Imagine you’re competing with multiple parties to secure a coveted resource, such as your dream house, a cool invention, or a talented new hire. How might you stand out from the pack and win the prize? Maybe by finding a way to preempt the competition. That’s what Amazon recently did in its $13.4 billion acquisition of … Read More 

Private Negotiation, Public Auction, or Both?

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

When Amazon and Apple each began scouting locations for a new campus this past year, we might have expected them to follow a similar search process. But, in many ways, their searches have been polar opposites:

Amazon set off a frenzy in September 2017 when it announced it was soliciting bids from cities interested in hosting its second … Read More 

Setting the right table

Posted by & filed under International Negotiation.

On March 8, U.S. president Donald Trump shocked even his own White House staff when he revealed that he had accepted an invitation to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. After months of name-calling and threats between Trump and Kim, the news that the two leaders would be discussing the possibility of North Korea dismantling … Read More 

Bargaining at a Fever Pitch

Posted by & filed under Leadership Skills.

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 

Subramanian Will Succeed Mnookin as Program on Negotiation Chair

Posted by & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

Professor Guhan Subramanian ’98 will be the new chair of the Program on Negotiation (PON) at Harvard Law School. Subramanian holds appointments at both Harvard Law School, where he is the Joseph H. Flom Professor of Law and Business, and Harvard Business School, where he is the H. Douglas Weaver Professor of Business Law. As chair of PON, he … Read More 

Business Negotiations: Matching Rights – The Fundamentals

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

When the mergers-and-acquisitions boom began in 1993, many deals simply required the seller to let the buyer know if a “superior proposal” came along. By the late 1990s, buyers were demanding – and receiving – more than this: an exclusive negotiating period of several days, during which they could decide to match or improve upon … Read More 

Negotiation in the News: Before building a coalition, consider the consequences

Posted by & filed under Leadership Skills.

This past July, the News Media Alliance (NMA), a trade association of approximately 2,000 U.S. and Canadian news organizations, announced that it was planning to ask Congress for a limited antitrust exemption to allow its members to negotiate collectively with Google and Facebook regarding digital advertising. With consumers increasingly accessing their news through web platforms, … Read More 

Video: Setting the Stage for Productive Negotiations

Posted by & filed under Daily, Resources, Videos.

Understanding how to arrange the meeting space is a key aspect of preparing for productive negotiations. In this video, Guhan Subramanian, professor at Harvard Law School and Harvard Business School, discusses a real world example of how seating arrangements can influence a negotiator’s success. The discussion was held in his negotiation training workshop “Setting the … Read More 

When Two Deals are Better than One

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

When you have multiple negotiations to conduct with one or more partners, should you combine them into one big deal? In negotiations for the sale of new books by Barack and Michelle Obama, the answer was an emphatic yes. Cast of characters When famous political figures have a book to sell, they turn to one person: Robert … Read More 

Dear Negotiation Coach: Negotiating Upgrades

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

Q: My company, a large multinational, contracts with an outside vendor for some of our software infrastructure. Due to new regulatory requirements, we have asked the vendor’s team to upgrade certain features of the software. We think that we should get these upgrades for free because these enhanced features may be needed by their other clients … Read More 

Win-Win Business Negotiations: The Wachovia Buyout

Posted by & filed under Win-Win Negotiations.

Changing financial and legal conditions can create and destroy wealth in the blink of an eye. How does a negotiator take advantage of such periods of change? During the financial crisis of 2008, Wachovia Corporation found itself looking for a buyer to avoid collapse while the financial industry as a whole was the grips of … Read More 

Dear Negotiation Coach: Mixing Business and Friends

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

Q:My wife and I are friends with another couple who live in our neighborhood. For many years they have told us that they love our home and street and that if we ever wanted to move, they would like to buy our house. From the number of times they have said it, we know they’re … Read More 

Is Your Deal Too Good to Be True?

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

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 

Dear Negotiation Coach: Negotiating Reverse Auctions

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

QUESTION For years, my company had long-term relationships with our customers, in which we would sit down for annual negotiations. But over the past few years, more of our customers have required us to participate in “reverse auctions” run by procurement departments. Sometimes these auctions are online, and sometimes they are in person; sometimes they are … Read More 

A Bidding War at Sundance

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

Filmmaker Nate Parker sticks to his dreams in a heated “negotiauction.” Most sellers dream about driving up the price of a commodity in a bidding war. But how can you stay true to your nonfinancial goals in an auction fixated on price? Nate Parker, the filmmaker, star, and producer behind the film The Birth of a … Read More 

Dear Negotiation Coach: When Silence is Golden

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Question: I have the sense that silence can sometimes be useful, but it usually just makes me feel uncomfortable. Does silence have benefits in negotiation? A: In Western cultures, many people are uncomfortable with silence. We tend to talk on top of one another, with little pause between point and counterpoint. Any silence that occurs often feels … 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 

Try a Game-Changing Move in Your Next “Negotiauction”

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

Increasingly in the business world, negotiators must compete not only with their counterpart across the table but also with others fighting for the same deal. A procurement officer may announce to a longtime supplier that she is putting their contract up for an auction for the first time, for example. Or competitors bidding for a … Read More 

In Business Negotiations, Capitalize on a Right of First Refusal

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

As dealmakers look for more sophisticated ways to reduce risks and increase returns, a right of first refusal—a contractual guarantee that one side can match any offer that the other side later receives—has become a common and useful tool to add to your business negotiation skills.


Build powerful negotiation skills and become a better dealmaker and leader. Download 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.


When the mergers-and-acquisitions (M&A) boom began in 1993, many deals … Read More 

Will Your Eagerness to Do a Deal Look Like Desperation?

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Here are two diverging assessments of John Kerry’s performance as secretary of state during President Barack Obama’s second term, drawn from common portrayals of him in the media: Kerry is an indefatigable leader who has taken a hands-on approach to solving the world’s problems. Miles apart from the scripted, cautious approach of his predecessor, Hillary Clinton, … Read More 

Negotiation logistics: Best practices for better deals

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

Before the official start of the Group of 7 (G-7) economic conference in Krün, Germany, this June, U.S. president Barack Obama and German chancellor Angela Merkel took time to tour a historic village and bond over beer and sausages. At the end of their friendly stroll, Obama jokingly asked Merkel whether the G-7 talks might … 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 

Lessons in Negotiation: Guhan Subramanian Cited by US Securities and Exchange Commissioner Daniel Gallagher

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

Program on Negotiation executive committee member and Harvard Law School and Harvard Business School professor Guhan Subramanian was recently cited by Commissioner Daniel M. Gallagher of the United States Securities and Exchange Commission during his opening statement at the Proxy Voting Roundtable. In discussing the equalizing effect of a universal balloting system on corporate governance, Commissioner … Read More 

Dear Negotiation Coach: Negotiations Stalled Over Price

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

I am trying to buy a smaller company in my industry, but the negotiations have stalled over price. It probably won’t surprise you to hear the seller thinks his company is worth a lot more than I think it is. So far we have been talking about doing a straight cash deal, but now I’m contemplating … Read More 

Negotiation Skills: View Your Counterpart as an Agent

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Looking for yet another way to build your power at the negotiating table? Examine the incentives of your counterpart—and then consider whether they align with those of the group she represents. In most business negotiations, notes Harvard professor Guhan Subramanian, your counterpart is acting as her organization’s representative, or agent (just as you’re acting as … Read More 

Bluffing versus puffing

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

In July 2014, Jesse Litvak, the former managing director of investment bank Jefferies LLC, became the only person to date to be convicted of fraud in connection with the U.S. government’s Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), which used bailout funds to promote investment in mortgage-backed securities. Litvak was charged with defrauding investors of $2 million … Read More 

How to avoid a bidding war

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

In the National Basketball Association (NBA), signing an endorsement deal with footwear giant Nike has become a rite of passage for newly anointed superstars. Save for a few notable deals by Adidas, Nike has dominated the practice of paying top talent millions for the right to sell lines of collectible shoes in their names. This past … Read More 

In business negotiations, assess when to go it alone

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

More than $100 billion in technology mergers and acquisitions has been announced in the United States so far this year, a level not seen since 2000, according to financial software company Dealogic. Among the most notable acquisitions, Google paid $3.2 billion for thermostat and smoke alarm maker Nest Labs in January, and Facebook shelled out … Read More 

Dear Negotiation Coach: Coping with a change-of-control provision

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

Q: I represent a company—let’s call it “ClientCorp”—that has a long-term contract with another company, “TargetCorp.” A provision in the agreement allows ClientCorp to exit the contract in the event of a “change of control” at TargetCorp. We have become aware that TargetCorp is in negotiations to be acquired by a third party, “AcquirerCorp,” a … Read More 

Pull Ahead of the Pack with a “Negotiauction”

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

Robert Barnett, a corporate attorney based in Washington, D.C., moonlights as a book agent for celebrity politicians—including Barack Obama, Laura Bush, and Bill and Hillary Clinton. New York editors line up to sign Barnett’s clients and, they hope, rake in blockbuster profits. Barnett’s technique is to introduce his latest superstar to the major publishing houses and … Read More 

Business Negotiations: Imposing Procedural Constraints

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

Sometimes the courts will be unwilling to get involved in the substantive terms of the deal but will impose procedural constraints on the more powerful party. Consider the case of a controlling shareholder in a publicly traded company – someone who holds more than 51% – who wants to “cash out” the minority shareholders. Under the corporate … Read More 

Deal Making: When You Hold All the Cards

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

Consider the following hypothetical negotiation scenarios, in which you seem to hold all the cards: – One of your customers has just landed a lucrative new contract, and you’re the only supplier who can add a critical component to that customer’s production process. – You own a controlling interest in a publicly traded company and are seeking … Read More 

Program on Negotiation Welcomes Visiting Scholar Stefanos Mouzas

Posted by & filed under Daily, News.

Stefanos Mouzas is Professor of Marketing and Strategy at Lancaster University Management School in England, where he is also affiliated with the Center of Law and Society. He received his B.Sc. (Economics) from the University of Athens, LL.M. (Contract Law) from University of Bristol, and Ph.D. (Marketing) from Lancaster University. He was Visiting Professor … Read More 

Matching Rights in Business Negotiations: Advice for the Grantor – Use Matching Rights to Bridge the Gap

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

In negotiation, including a matching right in an agreement can be a classic win-win move. Suppose you’re a landlord negotiating with a prospective tenant. You want to maintain the ability to sell the apartment to someone else in the future, while your prospective tenant wants a commitment to rent the apartment for as long as … 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 

A deal blows up

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

When negotiating a new business partnership, what should you do if you begin to believe that your partner is less attractive than he (or it) first appeared? Duke Energy faced this question during the course of its nearly two years of merger negotiations with Progress Energy. In July 2012, the two North Carolina– based companies closed … Read More 

Yahoo’s Tumblr acquisition

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

On May 19, Internet company Yahoo announced that it was purchasing the blogging service Tumblr for about $1.1 billion in cash. The acquisition could put a fresh face on the aging Internet company and provide it with a profitable revenue source—or it could turn out to be another instance of the Web pioneer overpaying for … Read More 

Deal Making Without a Net: Yahoo’s Tumblr Acquisition

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

On May 19, Internet company Yahoo announced that it was purchasing the blogging service Tumblr for about $1.1 billion in cash. The acquisition could put a fresh face on the aging Internet company and provide it with a profitable revenue source—or it could turn out to be another instance of the Web pioneer overpaying for … Read More 

Dear Negotiation Coach: “Bad acts” and better contracts.

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

Q: I work for an international nonprofit that tries to eliminate “bad acts” around the world—not illegal activities, but ones that we consider unethical. We are currently negotiating with a U.S. business owner who is engaged in these bad acts. His business is generating losses, so we are trying to buy him out and put … Read More 

Dear Negotiation Coach: “Should we leave external advisers out of the room?”

Posted by & filed under Mediation.

Q: My company is involved in a contentious and high-stakes intellectual-property dispute with a longtime competitor in our industry. We have been engaged in mediation for several months, thus far without success. In each session, there are dozens of people on each side, perhaps reflecting the high stakes and complex issues of law and technology … Read More 

From negotiation to auction: The rise of real-time bidding

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

Because of a technological innovation called real-time bidding, or RTB, more and more online-advertising transactions are being completed through auctions rather than negotiations. The transformation could foreshadow similar changes in other realms, as negotiations gain the potential to become more automated. How RTB works In the dark ages of the Internet, websites would negotiate individually with potential … Read More 

Should Your Boss Be at the Negotiation Table?

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Imagine that you are about to begin a negotiation whose subject matter is squarely within your area of responsibility at my company. However, the dollar amounts at stake are so large that you are tempted to kick it upstairs to your boss, or at least involve your boss directly in the negotiation. What are the … Read More 

Sellers: Stay out of legal hot water

Posted by & filed under Dealmaking.

When it comes to business negotiations, you probably understand the importance of being as principled as possible to protect your reputation and ward off legal trouble. You probably expect your counterparts to follow the straight and narrow as well. Yet negotiators often have only a fuzzy grasp of which claims and strategies are legal and … Read More 

Conflict management from the start

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations, Daily.

Adapted from “Before You Sign on the Dotted Line…”first published in the Negotiation newsletter, May 2009. After reaching an agreement, professionals often rely on their lawyers to draw up the official contract. Unfortunately, miscommunication between negotiators and their lawyers often leads to costly mistakes. Contract terms may not accurately represent the negotiated agreement, key deal terms … Read More 

Sizing up the competition

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations, Daily.

Adapted from “The Ins and Outs of Making Sealed Bids,” by Guhan Subramanian (professor, Harvard Business School and Harvard Law School), first published in the Negotiation newsletter, July 2007. Imagine you’re bidding for a house against another “very interested party,” according to your real-estate agent, and the seller wants a sealed bid from you by close … Read More 

Don’t rush into a flawed contract

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations, Daily.

Adapted from “A Contingent Contract? Weigh the Costs and Benefits of Making a ‘Bet’,” by Guhan Subramanian (professor, Harvard Law School and Harvard Business School), first published in the Negotiation newsletter, August 2006. Contracts in professional sports are often chock-full of contingencies -“bets” that parties place on their different expectations of future outcomes – and former … Read More 

Could Your Power Trip Backfire?

Posted by & filed under Conflict Resolution.

Adapted from “When You Hold All the Cards,” by Guhan Subramanian (professor, Harvard Business School and Harvard Law School), first published in the Negotiation newsletter. Being the more powerful party in a negotiation doesn’t guarantee a free ride. Specifically, legal rules may constrain your actions. In particular, the courts might read additional terms into the deal … Read More 

Negotiators: Don’t Go on a Power Trip

Posted by & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “When You Hold All the Cards,” by Guhan Subramanian (professor, Harvard Business School and Harvard Law School), first published in the Negotiation newsletter. One of your customers has just landed a lucrative new contract, and you’re the only supplier who can add a critical component to that customer’s production process. Concerns about violating your … Read More 

Negotiation? Auction? A Deal Maker’s Guide

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations, Daily.

Guhan Subramanian, Joseph Flom Professor of Law and Business, Harvard Law School; Douglas Weaver Professor of Business Law, Harvard Business School; Author of Negotiauctions When you have something to sell, should you hold an auction or negotiate a collaborative deal that delivers maximum value to both sides? In this article, professor Guhan Subramanian compares the risks … Read More 

Know your rights!

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations, Daily.

Adapted from “Matching Rights: A Boon to Both Sides,” by Guhan Subramanian (professor, Harvard Business School and Harvard Law School), first published in the Negotiation newsletter. As dealmakers look for more sophisticated ways to reduce risks and increase returns, a matching right—a contractual guarantee that one side can match any offer that the other side … Read More 

Prof. Guhan Subramanian featured in Forbes India

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations, Daily.

Professor Guhan Subramanian was featured in Forbes India in April 2010. Professor Subramanian discusses his latest book Negotiauctions: New Dealmaking Strategies for a Competitive Marketplace, which was published in February 2010. Click here to read the full article. Professor Subramanian will be teaching Advanced Negotiation: Deal Design and Implementation at the Harvard Negotiation Institute June 14-18. For … Read More 

Too much commitment?

Posted by & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “Are You Overly Committed to the Deal?” First published in the Negotiation newsletter. A telecommuter hires a carpenter to build a workstation for her home office. The carpenter’s contract requires payment of 50% upon signing, an additional 30% halfway through the job, and the final 20% upon completion. When the job is done, … Read More 

“Are We Exclusive?”

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

Ron McAfee, a carpenter and roofing expert, spent considerable time working with a condominium association on the design of a new roof deck. After gaining agreement on the proposed layout, design, and materials, McAfee submitted a written bid of $12,500. One of the board members subsequently showed McAfee’s plans to another roofer, who offered to … Read More 

Professor Guhan Subramanian featured in TheDeal.com

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations, Daily, Resources, Reviews of Books.

Guhan Subramanian is one of the most prominent — and ambitious — legal academics of his generation. The 39-year-old is the only person who’s ever held tenured positions at Harvard’s law and business schools, and on the side he advises companies on M&A and corporate governance. After authoring numerous academic papers and a corporate law … Read More 

Should You Go Dutch?

Posted by & filed under Business Negotiations.

Most everyday auctions are English: they begin with an opening bid, continue with ascending bids, and end when the bidding stops. But for some assets, the seller opens at a very high price, then moves down rather than up if all bidders are silent. … Read More 

Program on Negotiation saddened by the loss of 2007 Great Negotiator, Bruce Wasserstein

Posted by & filed under Daily, Great Negotiator Award, News.

The Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School was saddened to learn of the death of Bruce Wasserstein, PON’s 2007 Great Negotiator. The Great Negotiator Award is  given to recognize an individual whose lifetime achievements in the field of negotiation and dispute resolution have had a significant and lasting impact. Wasserstein, Chairman and CEO of  … Read More 

Negotiating the Financial Crisis

Posted by & filed under Daily, Events.

Panelists will discuss the negotiation challenges presented by the banking crisis, GM’s restructuring, and the policy making process. Moderator: Robert Mnookin, Chair of the Program on Negotiation and Samuel Williston Professor of Law at Harvard Law School Panelists: Howell Jackson, Acting Dean and Professor, Harvard Law School Robert Pozen, Chairman of MFS Investment Management and Senior Lecturer of Business Administration … Read More