negotiation case study
What is a Negotiation Case Study?
To help students and professionals learn from highly skilled negotiators, an in-depth negotiation case study can teach valuable lessons.
A negotiation case study can introduce participants to new negotiation and dispute resolution tools, techniques, and strategies. But not just any negotiation is worthy of being a case study.
For teaching negotiation purposes, field-based, actual cases are the most effective. They require students to face tough decisions based on imperfect information and uncertain circumstances-exactly as is the case in reality. And there’s no shortage of real-life examples to learn from.
One negotiation case study demonstrates the power of coalitions to achieve win-win negotiations at the bargaining table. Another examines the power of sincerity in both negotiation and dispute resolution. You can find case studies that follow well-known events, such as negotiations between the NFL players and league owners. Alternatively, some case studies examine negotiations between families and business partners you probably aren’t familiar with.
But not every negotiation comes to a tidy conclusion. Sometimes negotiators care so much about the issues at stake that they mistake compromise for surrender. Sometimes they’re so confident things will go their way they don’t try hard enough.
For example, one negotiation case study from a few years ago looks at the Boston Red Sox’s spectacularly botched opening offer in renegotiations with star pitcher, Jon Lester. The negotiation serves as a reminder of the importance of crafting opening offers with care. By tossing out a random, lowball number ($70 million over four years), the Sox offended Lester and ultimately drove him into the arms of the Chicago Cubs and their six-year, $155 million deal.
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.
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