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.


negotiation

What is Negotiation?

Negotiation is a bargaining process through which parties attempt to forge an agreement to resolve disputes, establish a business contract, purchase a new home, or conclude a peace treaty.

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? People bring different negotiation styles and strategiesto the bargaining table, based on their different personalities, experiences, and beliefs about negotiating.

The Program on Negotiation’s founder Roger Fisher authored the book Getting to Yes with Harvard faculty William L. Ury and Bruce Patton and defines negotiation as a “back-and-forth communication designed to reach an agreement when you and the other side have some interests that are shared and others that are opposed.”

Other experts define negotiation using similar terms. In her negotiation textbook The Mind and Heart of the Negotiator, Leigh Thompson refers to negotiation as an “interpersonal decision-making process” that is “necessary whenever we cannot achieve our objectives single-handedly.” And in their book Judgment in Managerial Decision Making, Max H. Bazerman and Don A. Moore write, “When two or more parties need to reach a joint decision but have different preferences, they negotiate.”

Together, these negotiation definitions encompass the wide range of negotiations we carry out in our personal lives, at work, and with strangers or acquaintances.

You can improve your negotiation skills in business and personal disputes 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 negotiation:

Real Life Negotiation Lessons Learned from Fiction

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

When the COVID-19 lockdown began in March 2020—coinciding with his upcoming sabbatical—Harvard Business School professor Deepak Malhotra, a member of the Program on Negotiation Executive Committee, saw the perfect opportunity to try something new. The author of three previous books, he turned his hand to fiction, penning “The Peacemaker’s Code,” a thrilling novel grounded in … Read More 

Harvard Negotiation Master Class: Advanced Strategies for Experienced Negotiators – April 26-30, 2021

Posted by PON Staff & 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 

Distributive Bargaining Strategies

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Negotiation Skills.

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 

Difficult Conversations: How to Discuss What Matters Most

Posted by PON Staff & filed under 1 Day Courses, executive training.

Whether dealing with a challenging customer, a difficult supplier, an unhappy employee, an unreasonable official, or a demanding boss, we all have conversations we anticipate with dread. Gain the strategies, tools, and frameworks you need to manage difficult conversations effectively in this one-day program led by negotiation experts Bruce Patton and Douglas Stone. … Read More 

Negotiation Master Class Spring 2021 Program Guide

Posted by PON Staff & 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 

Leveraging the Power of Emotions As You Negotiate

Posted by PON Staff & filed under 1 Day Courses, executive training.

We all experience emotionally challenging conflicts and negotiations. Whether you are negotiating with your board or with your family, over internal resources or with external partners, as the buyer or as the seller, emotions can turn an otherwise productive negotiation into an unprofitable disaster.It does not have to be that way. In this interactive workshop, … Read More 

Unlocking Value in Complex Business Deals

Posted by Michael Phillips & filed under 1 Day Courses, executive training.

Through interactive lectures, freeze/unfreeze experience-based learning exercises, and personalized feedback, you will enhance your ability to prepare for complicated bargaining situations. You’ll also learn how to boost leverage by creating the right kind of competition (or, in some cases, merely the perception of competition) and examine the four critical considerations of complicated negotiation situations: the … Read More 

PON Global — Online February and March 2021 Brochure

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Free Report.

An innovative, blended learning course that has been hosted in cities around the world, PON Global is now being offered online. PON Global is brought to you by the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School (PON), which has provided world-class negotiation training to more than 50,000 global professionals. Adapted for online delivery, PON Global … Read More 

Bargaining for a New Car: Real World Negotiations Examples

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Business Negotiations.

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 

Change Management: Negotiating Organizational Change in the 21st Century

Posted by Michael Phillips & filed under 1 Day Courses, executive training.

Change is vital to organizational growth, health, and survival. It is also incredibly difficult to execute well—often resulting in diminished morale and feelings of anxiety and mistrust. In fact, researchers estimate that less than half of major corporate change projects at Fortune 1000 firms have been successful. … Read More 

Mediating Disputes – Now Live and Online

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

Course Dates: October 5-9, 2020 In this popular program, you will acquire the practical skills and techniques for facilitating negotiations between disputing parties. From family and employment matters to public policy and business disagreements, you will discover effective ways to settle differences and mediate disputes across a variety of contexts. This program will provide you with core … Read More 

PON Global — Online November 2020 Brochure

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Free Report.

An innovative, blended learning course that has been hosted in cities around the world, PON Global is now being offered online. PON Global is brought to you by the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School (PON), which has provided world-class negotiation training to more than 50,000 global professionals. Adapted for online delivery, PON Global … Read More 

Power Asymmetry and the Principal Agent Problem

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

Downloadable Video Simulation from the Teaching Negotiation Resource Center This video simulation on power asymmetry and principal agent dynamics by Professor Lawrence Susskind and Robert Wilkinson was designed to give students insights into the challenges surrounding difficult conversations, both with people across the table, as well as with people on their own side. The Power Asymmetry and … Read More 

Negotiation Workshop: Improving Your Negotiating Effectiveness

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

Course Dates: This course is closed Too many negotiators leave value on the table. They painfully divide a small pie after a costly battle while failing to capture offsetting opportunities for joint gain, or win the battle, but at the cost to relationships and reputation that limit long-term value. Reliably negotiating optimal outcomes requires a keen … Read More 

Make the Most of Online Negotiations

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Free Report.

We said goodbye to breakfast meetings, client lunches, and after-work happy hours. Goodbye to handshakes, fist bumps, and pats on the back. Goodbye to the boots-on-the-ground sales game as we knew it, and hello to Zoom calls and text messaging. To make matters even more difficult, the economy started to trend downwards—and so did the … Read More 

Negotiation Workshop: Strategies, Tools, and Skills for Success

Posted by PON Staff & 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 

Negotiation Master Class Fall 2020 Program Guide

Posted by Michael Phillips & 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? What can you expect from the Harvard Negotiation Master Class negotiation training? If you … Read More 

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

Posted by PON Staff & 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 

Secrets of Successful Dealmaking

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

Course Dates: This course is closed 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 tactics and … Read More 

Negotiating Difficult Conversations: Dealing with Tough Topics Productively

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

Course Dates: This course is closed When negotiations become difficult, emotions often escalate and talks break down. To overcome barriers and turn negotiations from difficult to collaborative, from breakdown to breakthrough, you must learn to understand the inter- and intra-personal dynamics at play. In this program, you will examine how your own assumptions and behaviors can … Read More 

Advanced Mediation Workshop: Mediating Complex Disputes

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

Course Dates: This course is closed You’ve handled numerous mediation sessions with ease. You are confident in your mediation skills, especially between two parties who want a fair resolution. But how do the dynamics change when their lawyers join the session? What happens when the mediation expands to multiple parties who are bringing many issues to … Read More 

Getting the Deal Done

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Free Report.

Dear Business Professional, Simon’s story says a lot how to get deals done. Here’s how he tells it: For nearly a decade, I’ve been an acquisitions editor at one of the largest book publishers in the Northeast. It’s my job to skim through reams of manuscripts to identify those that might be commercially viable—and … Read More 

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

Posted by PON Staff & 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 BR

Posted by Michael Phillips & filed under executive training, Negotiation and Leadership.

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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Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems AQ

Posted by Michael Phillips & filed under executive training, Negotiation and Leadership.

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 

Harvard Negotiation Institute 2020 Summer Programs Guide

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Free Report.

In this Special Guide, we provide details on all the courses available at Harvard Negotiation Institutes Summer Programs. Included in this guide are details on why you should attend the Harvard Negotiation Institutes Summer Program, learning objectives for each course, distinguished faculty who will be teaching the courses, and registration details. … Read More 

Collaborative Negotiation Examples: Tenants and Landlords

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Negotiation Training.

In the best of times, negotiators brim with resources, energy, and optimism, which inspire collaboration and creativity. In the worst of times—such as now—negotiators are so stressed and fearful that they can be distrustful and rigid. During the Covid-19 pandemic, we’ve often seen the latter negotiation style. But several collaborative negotiation examples have emerged in … Read More 

Negotiation and Leadership NL P

Posted by Michael Phillips & filed under executive training, Negotiation and Leadership.

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 

Win Win Negotiation: Managing Your Counterpart’s Satisfaction

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Win-Win Negotiations.

As the following points of win-win negotiation will demonstrate, ensuring that your counterpart is satisfied with a particular deal requires you to manage several aspects of the negotiation process, including his outcome expectations, his perceptions of your outcome, the comparisons he makes with others, and his overall negotiation experience itself. … Read More 

Negotiation and Leadership NL O

Posted by Michael Phillips & filed under executive training, Negotiation and Leadership.

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 

Negotiation Master Class Spring 2020 Program Guide

Posted by PON Staff & 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 

Sidetracked: Understanding the Psychological Barriers that Derail Negotiations

Posted by PON Staff & filed under 1 Day Courses, executive training.

We all experience emotionally challenging conflicts and negotiations. Whether you are negotiating with your board or with your family, over internal resources or with external partners, as the buyer or as the seller, emotions can turn an otherwise productive negotiation into an unprofitable disaster.It does not have to be that way. In this interactive workshop, … Read More 

Negotiation Master Class Fall 2019 Program Guide

Posted by PON Staff & 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 

Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems

Posted by Michael Phillips & filed under executive training, Negotiation and Leadership.

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 

Negotiation Skills and Bargaining Techniques from Female Executives

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Leadership Skills.

Dozens of female CEOs and other high-level women negotiators have told us about their experiences negotiating in traditionally masculine contexts where standards and expectations were ambiguous. Their experiences varied according to the gender triggers that were present in the negotiations and they adapted their negotiation skills to accommodate these shifts. … Read More 

Difficult Conversations: How to Discuss What Matters Most

Posted by PON Staff & filed under 1 Day Courses, executive training.

Whether dealing with a challenging customer, a difficult supplier, an unhappy employee, an unreasonable official, or a demanding boss, we all have conversations we anticipate with dread. Gain the strategies, tools, and frameworks you need to manage difficult conversations effectively in this one-day program led by negotiation experts Bruce Patton and Douglas Stone. … Read More 

NEW FREE REPORT! Salary Negotiations

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Free Report.

Discover how to refine your negotiation skills with this free special report, Negotiation Training: How Harvard Negotiation Exercises, Negotiation Cases and Good Negotiation Coaching Can Make You a Better Negotiator, from Harvard Law School. … Read More 

Practical Lessons from the Great Negotiators

Posted by PON Staff & filed under 1 Day Courses, executive training.

Since 2001, the Program on Negotiation has bestowed the “Great Negotiator Award” on individuals who have successfully negotiated against great odds to accomplish worthy goals. In this fascinating one-day session, you’ll have the rare opportunity to explore how these remarkable negotiators overcame their most formidable challenges—and how to apply these lessons in your own negotiations. … Read More 

Learn from the Best with the Great Negotiator Case Studies

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

No one can provide perspective on conflict resolution like experts who have been involved in some of the world’s most complex negotiations. Since 2001, the Program on Negotiation (PON) has bestowed the Great Negotiator Award upon distinguished leaders whose lifelong accomplishments in the fields of negotiation and dispute resolution have had compelling and lasting results. The Great … Read More 

Spring Mediation and Conflict Management – Online

Posted by PON Staff & filed under PON Seminars, PON Seminars (Semester-Length Programs).

This highly-interactive, online course is designed to raise your awareness of your own approach to conflict, introduce a range of theories about mediation and participatory processes, and improve your conflict management skills. While we will discuss a wide range of dispute resolution processes that involve third parties, we will focus on mediation. … Read More 

Dressing for Success: How Wealth and Status Cues Affect Business Negotiation

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

In business negotiations, we know we’re supposed to focus on substance: which issues matter to both sides, what each party can afford, what each side’s outside alternatives are, how to build a strong relationship, and so forth. Yet we’re often swayed by more superficial, often irrelevant aspects of negotiation, such as the shape of the table, whether … Read More 

Fall Negotiation and Dispute Resolution

Posted by PON Staff & filed under PON Seminars, PON Seminars (Semester-Length Programs).

This virtual and highly interactive semester-length seminar explores the ways that people negotiate to create value and resolve disputes. Designed to improve understanding of negotiation theory and build negotiation skills, the curriculum integrates negotiation research from several academic fields with experiential learning exercises. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, all sessions will be delivered live … Read More 

Using Body Language in Negotiation

Posted by PON Staff & 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 

Leveraging the Power of Emotions As You Negotiate

Posted by PON Staff & filed under 1 Day Courses, executive training.

We all experience emotionally challenging conflicts and negotiations. Whether you are negotiating with your board or with your family, over internal resources or with external partners, as the buyer or as the seller, emotions can turn an otherwise productive negotiation into an unprofitable disaster.It does not have to be that way. In this interactive workshop, … Read More 

Business Crisis Management: Crisis Communication Examples and How to Use Police Negotiation Techniques

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Free Report.

In this free special report negotiation experts offers advice on how to turn crisis situations into collaborative negotiations. Throughout the report, you will discover how to apply the lessons of professional hostage negotiators, avoid disasters through careful planning, diffuse tensions with angry members of the public, and break through impasse with open communication. … Read More 

Negotiation and Leadership: Dealing with Difficult People and Problems

Posted by PON Staff & filed under executive training, Negotiation and Leadership.

At Negotiation and Leadership, you will test your beliefs and assumptions, overcome emotional and rational biases, examine complex negotiation scenarios, and discover a range of competitive and cooperative negotiation strategies. In this acclaimed program, we compress 30 years of groundbreaking research into three thought-provoking days. In sessions taught by our expert faculty, you’ll broaden your … Read More 

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

Posted by PON Staff & 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 

Business Negotiation Skills to Curb Your Overconfidence

Posted by PON Staff & 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 

Dealing with Difficult People

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Free Report.

At the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School (PON), we are dedicated to helping professionals deal with hard bargainers and resolve even the most challenging disputes. To help you understand the principles of negotiation and conflict resolution, we put together a special report: Dealing With Difficult People. Discover how to collaborate, negotiate, and bargain … Read More 

Teaching Contract Negotiation: Using the Mutual Gains Approach

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

How do you use the mutual gains approach in contract negotiations? In contract negotiations, parties can often resort to positional bargaining instead of using the mutual gains approach. Teaching students to generate creative options in contract negotiations can help them avoid positional bargaining and achieve more beneficial and sustainable agreements. The Teaching Negotiation Resource Center (TNRC) … Read More 

Dear Negotiation Coach: How Can I Improve My Cross-Cultural Negotiation Skills?

Posted by PON Staff & filed under International Negotiation.

Q: Because of the nature of my business, I regularly engage in negotiations across cultures—and the results can be disappointing. After recently losing an important deal in India, I learned that my counterpart felt I was rushing through our talks. I thought I was just being efficient with our time. How can I improve my … Read More 

Negotiate Strong Relationships at Work and at Home

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Free 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 to foster relationships by building rapport, manage conflict in long-term relationships and negotiate business decisions with family members. … Read More 

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

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Dispute Resolution.

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 

Harborco: Role-Play Simulation

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Free Report.

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 

What is Crisis Management in Negotiation?

Posted by Katie Shonk & 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 

Negotiation Skills: Four Steps for Changing Negotiation Practices in Your Organization

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Business Negotiations.

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. Here are four simple steps to implement in your workplace. … Read More 

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

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Free Report.

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 

Your place or mine?

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

Adapted from “Your Place or Mine? Deciding Where to Negotiate,” by Jeswald W. Salacuse (Professor, Tufts University), first published in the “Negotiation Newsletter”. Everyone knows the three rules of real estate: “Location! Location! Location!” When it comes to making deals, choosing the right place to negotiate can be just as important. The location you select can … Read More 

Negotiation Strategies for Women: Secrets to Success

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Free Report.

As a general manager of a business unit and the father of two daughters in college, I have no tolerance for gender bias in the workplace or anywhere else for that matter. At least that’s what I thought, until a women manager handed me the Negotiation Strategies for Women report that she recently received from … Read More 

Training Women to Be Leaders: Negotiating Skills for Success

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Free Report.

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 

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

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Business Negotiations.

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 

Teaching Negotiation: Understanding The Impact Of Role-Play Simulations

Posted by Michael Phillips & filed under Free Report.

Negotiation can be challenging. And so can teaching it! At the Program on Negotiation (PON) at Harvard Law School, we help educators, scholars and practitioners like you learn how to more effectively teach negotiation. Notably, role-play simulations are a particularly useful way to facilitate experimentation and introduce participants to new dispute resolution tools, techniques and … Read More 

Download Your Next Mediation Video

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

Use Video Examples to Teach Your Students to Become Better Mediators Parties engaged in disputes are often unable to reconcile their differences alone, or fail to reach outcomes that are adequate for everyone. Mediators can add a great deal of value by helping parties to efficiently and effectively examine the issues at hand, take the interests … Read More 

Famous Negotiations Cases – NBA and the Power of Deadlines at the Bargaining Table

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Crisis Negotiations.

It’s a classic famous negotiations case. In the summer of 1988, National Basketball Association (NBA) team owners and players were at loggerheads over their new contract. At midnight on June 30, the owners declared a lockout, halting preparations for the start of the 1998–99 NBA season. The players and owners negotiated for six long months, … Read More 

Should Women “Lean In” to Create More Value in Negotiations?

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Dealmaking.

Back in early 2008, Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg began thinking about hiring Sheryl Sandberg, a vice president at Google and a former chief of staff for the U.S. Department of the Treasury, as the social-media company’s new chief operating officer. The two met several nights a week for almost two months to discuss … Read More 

Entrepreneurship and Negotiation: Call for Papers and Proposals

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Pedagogy at PON, Teaching Negotiation.

The Negotiation Journal is Hosting a Virtual Conference for its Special Issue on Entrepreneurship and Negotiation While negotiation and entrepreneurship scholars have traditionally worked in different circles, their work increasingly intersects as the two fields co-evolve. Both entrepreneurship and negotiation involve dynamic, strategic, interpersonal activities that seek to create and claim some form of value.  Both … Read More 

Dear Negotiation Coach: How Can You Simplify Complex Negotiations with Stakeholder Alignment?

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Business Negotiations.

In complex, multiparty negotiations, the task of value creation can quickly become overwhelming because of the large number of parties and interests at stake. An emerging process called “stakeholder alignment” can help construct order from chaos in complex negotiations, according to Joel Cutcher-Gershenfeld, a professor at the Heller School for Social Policy and Management at … Read More 

How to Control Your Emotions in Conflict Resolution

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Conflict Resolution.

To guard against acting irrationally or in ways that can harm you, authors of Beyond Reason: Using Emotions As You Negotiate Roger Fisher and Daniel Shapiro advise you to take your emotional temperature during a negotiation. Specifically, try to gauge whether your emotions are manageable, starting to heat up, or threatening to boil over. … Read More 

Negotiating the Good Friday Agreement

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Conflict Resolution, Daily.

Retired US Senator George Mitchell played a critical role in negotiating the Good Friday Agreement in Northern Ireland. In an interview with Susan Hackley, Managing Director of the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School, in the February 2004 Negotiation newsletter, he describes how he was able to facilitate an agreement between these long-warring parties. … Read More 

4 Sales Negotiation Traps—and How to Overcome Them

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Business Negotiations.

Whether you’re planning to put your home up for sale, trying to unload excess merchandise, or searching for new clients, there’s a good chance you’ll make your next sales negotiation more challenging than it needs to be by falling into common cognitive traps. You can improve your sales negotiation skills by learning about four traps … Read More 

Great Women Leaders Negotiate

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Leadership Skills.

Great women leaders are no different than great male leaders—except that they may have faced more discrimination, lower expectations, and stronger resistance along the way. When women in leadership succeed, they often do so by cultivating successful negotiating skills. Here, we examine strategies that three top women in negotiation employed to become great women leaders. … Read More 

Managing Difficult Negotiators

Posted by Katie Shonk & 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 

Overconfidence About Future Failure or Success: Limiting Strategic Miscalculation in Business Negotiations

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Over-precision doesn’t necessarily lead us to think we’re better negotiators than we actually are. Rather, it causes us to trust our initial instincts too much. Sometimes we’re actually overconfident that we’ll perform worse than others. This tendency applies to competitive situations, including negotiation. Those who underestimate their ability to be competitive usually will choose to stay out … Read More 

Check Out the International Investor-State Arbitration Video Course

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

Master Class on International Investor-State Arbitration: What is it? How Does it Work? This two-hour video course is intended to teach students, legal practitioners, business executives, and government officials the essentials of international investor-state arbitration, an area of increasing concern for legal practice, business strategy, and government policy. In the video Master Class on International Investor-State Arbitration: … Read More 

Negotiation Research Says to Make Stronger First Offers in Multi-Issue Negotiations

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Should you make the first offer in a negotiation? What about multi-issue negotiations? It’s not a trivial question. The negotiator who makes the first offer can powerfully anchor the discussion in her favor, research has found. In fact, the first offer accounts for between 50% and 85% of the variance in a negotiation’s final outcome, Adam … Read More 

The Opposite of Autocratic Leadership Styles

Posted by Alex Green & filed under Leadership Skills.

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 

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

Posted by PON Staff & 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 

New Simulation: Ethical Dilemmas Surrounding Water Shutoffs in Older American Cities

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

Ethical Dilemmas Surrounding Water Shutoffs in Older American Cities, newly available from the Teaching Negotiation Resource Center (TNRC), is a six party, multi-issue negotiation involving environmental, political, economic and social interest groups, in a shrinking American city, where the water infrastructure is in desperate need of repair. This role-play simulation illustrates the ethical, financial and … Read More 

Self-Analysis and Negotiation

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

“Separate the people from the problem,” advises the best-selling negotiation text Getting to Yes. That’s certainly good counsel when tempers flare and bargaining descends into ego battles, but it’s a mistake to ignore the psychological crosscurrents in negotiation. Unless they are addressed, a deal may never be reached. … Read More 

Dear Negotiation Coach: Does Communication Style Matter in Negotiation?

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

In your research, you compared whether a warm and friendly negotiating style or a tough and firm negotiating style is more effective in distributive negotiation, where people are dividing rather than creating value. Which style do people tend to think will be more effective, and are they correct? Francesca Gino: Consistent with the old adage “You … Read More 

Nelson Mandela: Negotiation Lessons from a Master

Posted by PON Staff & 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, 2013. Soon after his arrival at South Africa’s … Read More 

Principled Negotiation: Focus on Interests to Create Value

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Negotiation Skills.

There’s a better, third way of negotiating—one that doesn’t rely on toughness or accommodation, but that will improve your likelihood of meeting your negotiation goals. In their pivotal negotiation text, Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In (Penguin, 2nd edition, 1991), Roger Fisher, William Ury, and Bruce Patton of the Harvard Negotiation Project promote … Read More 

How to Create Win-Win Situations

Posted by Katie Shonk & 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 

Dispute Resolution for India and Bangladesh

Posted by Katie Shonk & 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 

Ask A Negotiation Expert: Negotiation Means Sometimes Having To Say You’re Sorry

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Conflict Resolution.

An apology can be an essential means of repairing trust and rebuilding damaged relationships. Yet we don’t always apologize effectively, according to Jeswald Salacuse, a distinguished professor at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University, and a faculty member of the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School. We spoke to Salacuse about … Read More 

Negotiation in the News: Last Negotiating Moves From A Never-Boring President

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Crisis Negotiations.

Whether they love him or hate him, one thing negotiation analysts and practitioners should be able to agree on is that outgoing U.S. president Donald Trump has provided fascinating negotiations to examine and learn from over the past four years. His dealmaking both at home and abroad has been marked by impulsive, sometimes head- scratching decisions; … Read More 

Making the best of pandemic-era deal disruptions

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Dealmaking.

This past fall, three grown children set about helping their mother, Mina, find a memory care facility for John, their 85-year-old father. John’s previously mild dementia had progressed rapidly during the Covid-19 pandemic, to the point that he could no longer live safely at home. John’s children gathered a short list of affordable long-term care facilities … Read More 

Negotiating with Colleagues: Training for Collaborative Human Resources Negotiations

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

Human resources representatives are often involved in a wide array of internal company negotiations, including one-on-one disputes between colleagues as well as inter-department budgeting and overall staffing plans. To deftly handle this wide array of negotiations, human resources representatives must balance the various stakeholder concerns, financial assessments, and competing interests with fairness, consideration for relationships, … Read More 

How to Negotiate via Text Message

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Do you negotiate via text message? If you’re a young person early in your career, there’s a good chance you could easily pull up message strings full of discussions about issues and offers. If you’re a little older, you might have answered no. Even so, if you took a closer look at the saved text … Read More 

Debunking Negotiation Myths

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

In her book The Mind and Heart of the Negotiator, Leigh Thompson cites four widely held negotiation myths that bar negotiators from improving their skills. This analysis is worth the attention of anyone who wants to move beyond platitudes to a deeper understanding of negotiation. … Read More 

Negotiation Skills: Building Trust in Negotiations

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

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 

Advice for Peace: Ending Civil War in Colombia

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Great Negotiator Award, Pedagogy at PON, Teaching Negotiation.

Check out new, freely available video of Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos and his Peace Advisory Team as they discuss lessons learned from the Colombian peace process negotiations with the FARC guerrillas.   The civil war in Colombia lasted 52 years, taking the lives of at least 220,000 people and displacing up to seven million civilians. In … Read More 

Government Negotiations: Pfizer’s Rocky Road to U.S. Covid-19 Vaccine Deals

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Business Negotiations.

In late December, 2020, the Trump administration reached a $1.95 billion deal with pharmaceutical company Pfizer to purchase 100 million doses of the Covid-19 vaccine it had developed in partnership with German drugmaker BioNTech, enough to immunize 50 million people. It was the second such deal the parties had reached since the pandemic began to … Read More 

What is an Arbitration Agreement?

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Conflict Resolution.

If you have ever owned a cell phone or been issued a credit card, odds are you’ve signed an arbitration agreement. You also may have signed an arbitration agreement when you started your current job or a past one, whether you remember doing so or not. … Read More 

Dealmaking: Relationship Rules for Dealmakers

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Dealmaking.

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

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

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 

New Simulation and Case Study: Camp Lemonnier

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

Negotiating a Lease Agreement for a Key Military Base in Africa Camp Lemonnier is a United States Naval Expeditionary Base located in Djibouti and is the only permanent U.S. military base in Africa. Djibouti, bordering Somalia, Ethiopia, Eritrea, the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, has been home to Camp Lemonnier since the September 11, … Read More 

Implicit and Explicit Bias: When Negotiators Discriminate Based on Race

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Leadership Skills.

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 

5 Common Negotiation Mistakes and How You Can Avoid Them

Posted by Katie Shonk & 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 

Nicole Bryant is named the next Managing Director of the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Daily.

Nicole Bryant will be joining the Program on Negotiation on January 25, 2021 as our next Managing Director. She brings to the position a proven track record of successful management and growth of large-scale continuing education programming in an international context. Bryant joins the Program on Negotiation from Tufts University, where she served as the Director … Read More 

Teaching Mediation: Exercises to Help Students Acquire Mediation Skills

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

Often, disputing parties are unable achieve satisfactory or sustainable outcomes on their own through direct negotiation, and require the assistance of a mediator or facilitator. Mediators can help parties involved in a dispute through examining the issues at hand, uncovering the parties’ underlying interests, and identifying creative solutions. To act as mediator requires a great … Read More 

Dear Negotiation Coach: Responding (Or Not) to an Ultimatum in Negotiation

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Dispute Resolution.

Many times in our lives, we will encounter an ultimatum in negotiation. Sometimes the ultimatum is real, and often times it is not. However, there are ways to approach an ultimatum in negotiation to get past this sometimes burdensome hurdle. Professor Deepak Malhotra answers this week’s Dear Negotiation Coach column: QUESTION A counterpart recently made a “take … Read More 

6 Bargaining Tips and BATNA Essentials

Posted by Katie Shonk & 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 

Why Negotiations Fail

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Negotiation Skills.

When we think of failed business negotiations, most of us picture negotiators walking away from the table in disappointment. But that’s only one type of disappointing negotiation. Failed business negotiations also include those that parties come to regret over time and those that fall apart during implementation. The following three types of negotiation failures are … Read More 

Job Offer Negotiation Tips During the Pandemic

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Salary Negotiations.

Amid the Covid-19 pandemic, many jobseekers have concluded that if they are lucky enough to be offered a good job in a tight market, they lack the power needed to negotiate better employment terms. In fact, a silver lining of the crisis is that it has created new opportunities to negotiate. With the coronavirus throwing … Read More 

Developing Negotiation Skills for Integrative Negotiations – Does Personality Matter?

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

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 

Teaching Community Dispute Resolution: Exercises to Facilitate Positive Change

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

Community dispute resolution provides communities with a forum to address conflict, uncover and resolve the underlying issues, and thereby achieve positive change. Community dispute resolution provides an alternative to the judicial system and facilitates collaborative community relationships. Community dispute resolution processes can include training and educational activities, and may involve a mediator from within the … Read More 

The Door in the Face Technique: Will It Backfire?

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Dispute Resolution.

Have you ever heard of the door in the face technique? In a classic and rather amusing study from 1975, Arizona State University professor Robert Cialdini and his colleagues sent research assistants around campus posing as employees of the county’s juvenile detention center. They stopped people randomly on walkways and asked them if they would … Read More 

Will You Avoid a Negotiation Impasse?

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Negotiation Skills.

In the summer of 2016, Illinois became the only U.S. state in the past 80 years to go an entire year without a full operating budget, according to Reuters. It reached that dubious milestone thanks to an epic negotiation impasse between Republican governor Bruce Rauner and the Democratic-controlled state legislature. The story of the negotiation … Read More 

Pick the Right Negotiation Pace

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Daily, Negotiation Skills.

People operate at different speeds at the bargaining table. This is called their negotiation pace. Suppose that one bargainer is impatient, gritting her teeth and thinking, “Cut to the chase, for Pete’s sake!” Feeling pressured, the other person wants to say, “Easy on the coffee, pal! Let’s give this the time it deserves.”  … Read More 

BATNA Strategy: Should You Reveal Your BATNA?

Posted by PON Staff & filed under BATNA.

In their best-selling book Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In, Roger Fisher, William Ury, and Bruce Patton (Penguin, 1991) introduced the concept of having a BATNA strategy (best alternative to a negotiated agreement) as “the standard against which any proposed agreement should be measured.” When you know what you’ll do if you don’t reach … Read More 

Fairness in Negotiation

Posted by Silvia Glick & 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 

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

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under International Negotiation.

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 

Why First Impressions Matter in Negotiation

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

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 

New International Negotiation Simulations: Teaching International Negotiation with Current Global Dynamics

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

With the spread of a global pandemic, climate crisis, and the war on terror, resolving international conflicts has become increasingly complex. Training to address these difficult global conflicts must also reflect the modern issues and dynamics that face the international community. The Teaching Negotiation Resource Center (TNRC) has several new international negotiation simulations that reflect … Read More 

10 Notable Negotiations of 2020

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Daily.

If there’s one thing that negotiators have practiced this year, it’s thinking on their feet. As our 10 notable negotiations of 2020 illustrate, the coronavirus pandemic left individuals, businesses, nonprofits, and governments trying to replace outmoded plans with more workable alternatives.  10 Notable Negotiations of 2020 10. Struggling to play ball. This year, sports leagues scrambled to … Read More 

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

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

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 

Mediation Training: What Can You Expect?

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Mediation.

Organizations have long recognized the value of hiring professional mediators to help resolve disputes. More and more, managers have begun to also see value in securing mediation training for themselves and their employees. Although there are times when the services of an unbiased, professional mediator are needed, there may also be instances in which employees … Read More 

Negotiation Skills: Threat Response at the Bargaining Table

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

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 

Dealing with Difficult People? Negotiation Lessons from Ronald Reagan

Posted by Katie Shonk & 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 

Asynchronous Learning: Negotiation Exercises to Keep Students Engaged Outside the Classroom

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

Asynchronous role-play simulations teach valuable negotiation skills outside of a typical class format. Asynchronous learning is a term used to describe education, instruction, or learning that does not occur in the same time or place. Asynchronous learning uses resources that facilitate knowledge sharing outside the constraints of time and place among a group of people. Using … Read More 

Negotiating with Liars: Bluffing versus Puffing

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

How many time have you sat at the bargaining table, and wondered, “am I negotiating with liars?” And to your own self be true—how many times have you been untruthful in a negotiation? The example below shines a light on how lies can get negotiators into hot water. In July 2014, Jesse Litvak, the former managing … Read More 

Essential Negotiation Skills: Limiting Cognitive Bias in Negotiation

Posted by PON Staff & 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 

Framing in Negotiation

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Business Negotiations.

So, you’ve offered what you think is a great deal, but your counterpart doesn’t seem to agree. What’s the problem? The offer may be excellent—it’s how you’ve approached framing in negotiation that’s holding you back. … Read More 

The Process of Business Negotiation

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Business Negotiations.

Negotiators are more satisfied with the outcome of a negotiation when they think the process has been fair, research shows. To maximize satisfaction and build a strong working relationship, don’t leave the process of business negotiation up to chance. Given the importance of negotiation in business communication, you’d be wise to consider the following seven … Read More 

Tips for Teaching Simulations Online: Q&A with David Seibel

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Pedagogy at PON, Teaching Negotiation.

Check out the video from our recent session on teaching simulations online to pick up tips for running negotiation exercises remotely! Apprehensive about using role-play simulations in your remote or online blended course? Pick up tips on how to make simulations run smoothly over video, including how to best manage breakouts, run multiparty simulations, report results, … Read More 

Dealmaking Secrets from Henry Kissinger

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Dealmaking.

More than 1,600 international relations experts from across the political spectrum overwhelmingly rate Henry Kissinger, who served under former presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford, the most effective secretary of state of the last half-century. In their book, Kissinger the Negotiator: Lessons from Dealmaking at the Highest Level (Harper, 2018), James K. Sebenius, R. Nicholas … Read More 

How to Handle Difficult Customers

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Dealing with Difficult People.

Every salesperson has his or her war stories: tales of difficult customers who made extreme demands and threats, tried to take advantage, or were extremely rude. Dealing with difficult customers is inevitable in the sales world, and the question of how to handle difficult customers looms large. The following three guidelines can help you stay … Read More 

Writing the Negotiated Agreement

Posted by Guhan Subramanian & 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 

Techniques for Improving Your Negotiating Ability

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Many organizations subject their executives to rigorous performance reviews, yet few companies include negotiation effectiveness as one of the core competencies they track. Instead, negotiation is usually subsumed under categories such as “emotional intelligence,” or “persuasiveness” and negotiation techniques and their improvement through negotiation training are not a regular part of employee training programs. … Read More 

Negotiating Skills: How to Bargain “Behind the Table”

Posted by PON Staff & 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 

Diplomacy Examples in the Covid-19 Era

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under International Negotiation.

In 2020, grounded by the Covid-19 pandemic, international diplomats accustomed to traveling from capital to capital found themselves stuck in a never-ending stream of videoconferences. To take a number of diplomacy examples, the G7, the G20, the International Monetary Fund, and the World Bank all met online, reduced to tiny faces on a screen. The … Read More 

What is Dispute System Design?

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Dispute Resolution.

Dispute System Design (DSD) is the process of identifying, designing, employing, and evaluating an effective means of resolving conflicts within an organization. In order to be effective, dispute systems must be thoroughly thought out and carefully constructed. … Read More 

Ask A Negotiation Expert: Spreading Negotiation Knowledge for a Better World

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Leadership Skills.

For 19 years, the Program on Negotiation (PON) at Harvard Law School has grown and thrived under the leadership of Managing Director Susan Hackley. As PON’s chief administrative and financial officer, Hackley has overseen all activities, including academic events, executive education, interdisciplinary programs, and publications, including Negotiation Briefings. Hackley, who has taught negotiation seminars around … Read More 

Lessons learned from a great negotiation leader

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Leadership in negotiation In academia, there are often subtle conflicts between the executive staff who run programs and centers, and the academics connected to them. Only a talented leader can consistently weave together such groups and integrate very different views. Susan has been such a leader for many years. She provides a vision of doing all we … Read More 

Negotiation research you can use: In sales, front-end honesty can boost back-end profits

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

In our information age, buyers have squeezed sellers’ profit margins by collecting readily available data about the value of goods and services. Car buyers can easily identify the dealership cost of their preferred vehicle online and use it to negotiate a great price, for example. And more than 94% of business buyers surveyed by Accenture said … Read More 

Negotiating fruitful partnerships at warp speed

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Business Negotiations.

In the global pharmaceutical industry, companies often work in utter secrecy to be the first to bring moneymaking, lifesaving drugs to market. But when the novel coronavirus emerged in China in early 2020, many leading drugmakers quickly recognized that they would not be able to swiftly develop and mass- produce effective Covid-19 vaccines and treatments on … Read More 

Negotiation in the News: The NBA tries to make the best of another (projected) bad season

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Dealmaking.

In negotiations across the world, financial troubles brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic have left parties squabbling over smaller and smaller pies. The silver lining? Negotiators may have little choice but to get a deal done, and awareness of this reality can motivate creative thinking and cooperation. Negotiating the terms of their upcoming season, the National … Read More 

Bargaining in Bad Faith: Dealing with “False Negotiators”

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Dealing with Difficult People.

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 

How to Deal with Difficult Customers

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Dealing with Difficult People.

To hear some salespeople and service representatives tell it, difficult behavior from customers is at an all-time high. Stories of demanding customers proliferate in the press and on social media, while customers likewise complain that their needs increasingly are not being met by companies focused on the bottom line. … Read More 

Overcoming Cultural Barriers in Negotiation: China and the Gold Rush Mentality

Posted by PON Staff & filed under International Negotiation.

If Chinese culture favors insiders, it stands to reason that outsiders face an uphill battle. In One Billion Customers: Lessons from the Front Lines of Doing Business in China (Free Press, 2005), business executive and Wall Street Journal bureau chief James McGregor writes of the 1996 attempt by Xinhua, the official Chinese news agency, to … Read More 

Are Introverts at a Disadvantage in Negotiation?

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

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 

Team Building Using Negotiation Skills

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

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 

Negotiation Analysis: The US, Taliban, and the Bergdahl Exchange

Posted by PON Staff & filed under International Negotiation.

The exchange between the United States and the Taliban of Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl for five Taliban leaders held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, represented the first public prisoner exchange of a US soldier in the thirteen year US involvement in Afghanistan. The background of the deal including how Private First Class Bergdahl (promoted twice to Sergeant … Read More 

Managing Cultural Differences in Negotiation

Posted by PON Staff & filed under International Negotiation.

It’s important to educate yourself about your counterpart’s culture so that you don’t risk offending her or seeming unprepared. At the same time, it would be a mistake to focus too narrowly when preparing for cross-cultural communication in business. Research on international negotiation can help us think more broadly when it comes to managing cultural … Read More 

Using Principled Negotiation to Resolve Disagreements

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Dispute Resolution.

Parties can often reach a better agreement through integrative negotiation—that is, by identifying interests where they have different preferences and making tradeoffs among them. If you care more about what movie you see tonight, but your friend cares more about where you have dinner, for example, you can each get your preference on the issue … Read More 

The Pitfalls of Negotiations Over Email

Posted by PON Staff & 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 

Does Using Technology in Negotiation Change Our Behavior?

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Imagine that two people are introduced to each other via email by a mutual friend. They begin discussions on the phone regarding a potential business partnership, which lead to several in-person meetings during which their laptops are open and their smartphones are on the table, available for checking facts and tracking down data. In between … Read More 

How to Negotiate in Cross-Cultural Situations

Posted by Alex Green & filed under Leadership Skills.

Figuring out how to negotiate in cross-cultural situations can seem like a daunting endeavor, and for good reason. Negotiating across the cultural divide adds an entire dimension to any negotiation, introducing language barriers, differences in body language and dress, and alternative ways of expressing pleasure or displeasure with the elements of a deal. As a … Read More 

Negotiating Identity and Values-Based Disputes

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

How Do Parties in Conflict Negotiate Core Beliefs? Identity and values-based disputes are particularly challenging to resolve, as identities are naturally inflexible and values are typically much less elastic than interest-based issues. In conventional interest-based negotiation, parties often do give up one thing in exchange for getting something they want more. This is often not possible … Read More 

For Business Negotiators, Patience Can be a Virtue

Posted by PON Staff & filed under BATNA.

Business negotiators know that persistence and tenacity can make all the difference between impasse and a game-changing breakthrough. Take the saga behind Microsoft’s 2013 announcement of its pending $7.2 billion acquisition of Finnish mobile phone company Nokia’s handset and services business. The two parties engaged in many months of fruitless talks before either side believed … Read More 

Negotiation Advice: When to Make the First Offer in Negotiation

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Negotiation Skills.

When or when not to make the first offer in negotiations is a question many expert negotiators ask themselves when approaching business negotiations, real estate transactions, or even interpersonal negotiations with friends and family. In this article drawn from negotiation research, we offer negotiating skills and negotiation tips for when, and when not, to make … Read More 

Negotiation Examples in Real Life: Buying a Home

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Business Negotiations.

While many of our articles discuss negotiation theory and the latest research, sometimes it helps to discuss negotiation examples in real life when offering negotiation tips and advice. The following negotiation example is based on bargaining in real estate, a negotiation scenario many of us may face in our lifetime. … Read More 

Mediation and the Conflict Resolution Process

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Conflict Resolution.

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 

The Importance of Negotiation in Business and Your Career

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Business Negotiations.

What are the essential ingredients to getting ahead in the workplace? Hard work, communication skills, and a generous dose of luck all play a role, of course. Another key ingredient—one that is often overlooked—is the ability to recognize and capitalize on opportunities to negotiate for your career success. Why is negotiation in business important? Because … Read More 

The Two Koreas Practice Conflict Management

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Conflict Resolution.

In August 2015, the decades-long conflict between South Korea and North Korea threatened to reach a breaking point. The causes of conflict between North and South go deep, but in this case, the South accused the North of planting landmines that seriously injured two South Korean border guards. South Korea retaliated with an old tactic … Read More 

Four Ways to Manage Conflict in the Workplace

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Business Negotiations.

Samantha was livid. While making a presentation during a meeting that both attended, Brad, a newcomer in her department, had shared some slides during a presentation that were clearly based on ideas for a project she’d shared with him privately—without giving her credit. Samantha angrily confronted Brad in his office after the meeting; he became … Read More 

Win-Lose Negotiation Examples

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Win-Win Negotiations.

When we think of win-lose negotiation examples, we think of competitions in which it seemed that one party had to succeed and the other had to fail. In fact, in the majority of win-lose negotiation examples, a win-win negotiation was possible, but parties overlooked opportunities to create value. As a consequence, they reached subpar results. … Read More 

Conflict Management: Intervening in Workplace Conflict

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Conflict Resolution.

Question: I’m aware of lots of unresolved personnel issues that seem to be festering in my department, such as complaints about someone who is not doing his share of the work, another person whose griping is causing a drop in morale, and two coworkers who can’t seem to get along. I’m comfortable negotiating with customers, … Read More 

Is Humor in Business Negotiation Ever Appropriate?

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Have you ever wondered if humor in business negotiation is appropriate, and when? Imagine this scenario. You’re sitting among some of your company’s partners. Just when it seems that they have reached a stalemate, your boss cracks a joke that instantly lightens the mood. Almost magically, she is able to rejuvenate the conversation—and reemphasize her position—in … Read More 

Casino Two: Updated Version of Casino Now Available from the TNRC

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

Gender can play a complex role in workplace dynamics, and so teaching students about how to approach these issues is critical. The Casino simulation, available from the Teaching Negotiation Resource Center (TNRC), has been widely used to teach participants about the role gender can play in the workplace. Now there is a new, updated version which … Read More 

Managing Conflicts of Interest

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Conflict Resolution.

An agent—whether a real-estate agent, lawyer, literary agent, or financial adviser—can provide the knowledge, experience, connections, and negotiation skills and strategies needed to get you a great deal. But we tend to forget that agents’ and clients’ financial interests are almost never perfectly aligned. A busy real-estate agent may advise you to offer more for … Read More 

A Negotiation Preparation Checklist

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Without a doubt, the biggest mistake that negotiators make—and one that many make routinely—is failing to thoroughly prepare. When you haven’t done the necessary analysis and research, you are highly likely to leave value on the table and even to be taken advantage of by your counterpart. A negotiation preparation checklist can help you avoid … Read More 

Conflict Resolution in the Family

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Conflict Resolution.

In Lessons in Domestic Diplomacy, the New York Times’ Bruce Feiler, drawing on family conflict resolution negotiation examples in his past, offers a case study of conflict management by focusing on disputes in the home, asking, “how do we break out of negative patterns of conduct and proactively approach problems encountered in our everyday lives?” … Read More 

Teach Your Students to Negotiate the Technology Industry

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

Technology is a pervasive feature of modern life, providing countless benefits ranging from new cancer treatments to smart phones. Technology can also be a source of disruption and is at the root of many disputes. Parties frequently disagree on the likely costs and benefits associated with the adoption of new technologies. They feud over such … Read More 

Negotiating with Difficult Personalities and “Dark” Personality Traits

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Dealing with Difficult People.

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 

Putting Your Negotiated Agreement Into Action

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

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 

When Not to Show Your Hand in Negotiations

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

Here, we consider four types of information that may be best kept under wraps: sensitive or privileged information, information that isn’t yours to share, information that diminishes your power, and information that may fluctuate during negotiations. Fearful of being hurt by revealing too much information, most negotiators play their facts and preferences close to the vest. … Read More 

Conflict Management and Negotiation: Personality and Individual Differences That Matter

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Conflict Resolution.

Although Elfenbein and her colleagues did find that negotiators performed at a similar level from one negotiation to the next, to their surprise, these scores were only minimally related to specific personality traits. And traits that are basically unchangeable, such as gender, ethnic background, and physical attractiveness, were not closely connected to people’s scores. A small … Read More 

Persuasive Parenting through Negotiation

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

In his book How to Negotiate with Kids…Even When You Think You Shouldn’t (Viking, 2003), Scott Brown, a co-founder of the Harvard Negotiation Project at Harvard Law School, outlines a framework for dealing with your children using the principles of negotiation. He identifies six principles of “persuasive parenting” that will allow you and your child to … Read More 

Teaching Online: Negotiation Pedagogy in a Pandemic

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Pedagogy at PON, Teaching Negotiation.

How do we adapt learning objectives to online instruction? As the Coronavirus spreads around the world, many universities have moved to a remote learning structure with online classes. This raises a very crucial question for instructors: how do you transition a course designed to be in-person into an online format while ensuring students remain engaged and … Read More 

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

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

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 

Negotiation Team Strategy

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Negotiation Skills.

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 

BATNA and Risky Negotiation Tactics

Posted by PON Staff & filed under BATNA.

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 

Major Negotiations in History: In Paris Climate Talks, Planning Was Key

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Negotiation Skills.

On November 4, 2020, the day after the U.S. presidential election, President Donald Trump officially pulled the United States out of the global climate agreement known as the Paris Accord. The United States is the only country to have exited the pact, which President-elect Joe Biden vowed to reenter upon taking office in January. The 195 … Read More 

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

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Salary Negotiations.

“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 

Fostering Constructive Conflict in Team Negotiation

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Conflict Resolution.

Conflict can, indeed, be an asset in team negotiation and decision- making, but only if it’s managed constructively. Even if you appreciate conflict, most people are more inclined to want to get along well with others. In groups and team negotiation, that motivation can hold us back from expressing viewpoints that diverge from those of the … Read More 

Setting Standards in Negotiations

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Salary Negotiations.

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 

How to Renegotiate a Bad Deal

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Dealing with Difficult People.

Think you have some stories from trying to renegotiate? Try this one on for size. Many viewed the deal to be a terrible one from the start.  Back in December 2008, Richard M. Daley, then Chicago’s mayor, announced that his administration had agreed to lease the city’s parking meters for 75 years to a private company … Read More 

In Conflict Resolution, President Carter Turned Flaws Into Virtues

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Conflict Resolution.

When it comes to conflict resolution, surprisingly useful nuggets of advice come from the realm of international conflict. Take the Camp David Accords of 1978, as described minute-by-minute by Lawrence Wright in his new book, Thirteen Days in September. U.S. President Jimmy Carter made history by negotiating a peaceful end to the conflict between Israel … Read More 

Overcoming Cross-Cultural Barriers to a Negotiated Agreement: Negotiation Ethics and International Negotiations

Posted by PON Staff & filed under International Negotiation.

Cross cultural negotiation examples provide insights into how negotiation techniques change depending on the context in which negotiators find themselves. As Professor Cheryl Rivers of Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia, points out in a recent negotiation research literature review, seasoned negotiators often hear stories about the unethical behaviors of people of other nationalities. … Read More 

Ask A Negotiation Expert: The Surprising Benefits of Negotiating with Your Kids

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

These days, families are experiencing a lot of togetherness—and perhaps more disagreement and conflict than usual. In their new book, Negotiating at Home: Essential Steps for Reaching Agreement with Your Kids (Praeger, 2020), Rutgers Business School professor Terri R. Kurtzberg and Baruch College professor Mary C. Kern explain how parents can apply negotiation skills to … Read More 

Negotiation research you can use: When Criticism Helps— and Hurts—Brainstorming

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

There’s usually only one hard-and-fast rule for brainstorming sessions: Don’t be critical. So entrenched is the belief that negative feedback stifles creativity that at product- design firm IDEO, team facilitators have been known to ring a bell when a team member throws cold water on another person’s idea. In negotiation and dispute resolution, the idea-generation stage … Read More 

Will your business negotiation make it to the finish line?

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Business Negotiations.

This past summer, the White House and the pharmaceutical industry buckled down to negotiate a long-awaited deal aimed at lowering the price of prescription drugs for Americans. Both parties had strong motivations to reach an agreement: With the 2020 presidential election looming, President Donald Trump was eager to fulfill a campaign promise he’d made during … Read More 

Learning from Crisis Negotiations

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Business Negotiations.

When businesses and industries are hit by an unforeseen disaster, they often need to quickly launch crisis negotiations and wrap them up as soon as possible. But time pressure can stifle essential elements of sound dealmaking, including rational thinking, perspective taking, and collaboration, while also promoting dysfunctional competition. Recent negotiations within industries facing crisis offer … Read More 

The Pros and Cons of Back-Channel Negotiations

Posted by PON Staff & filed under International Negotiation.

Back-channel negotiations provide temporary protection from deal spoilers and public scrutiny. Back-channel negotiations have been used in numerous conflicts across the globe, including the Israeli-Palestinian peace process from 1994 to 1996 and the Iranian hostage crisis in 1979–1980. In 1985, the imprisoned Nelson Mandela conducted back-channel negotiations with South Africa’s minister of justice, Hendrik Jacobus Coetsee, … Read More 

Star Wars Stories: George Lucas and a Strong BATNA, Passed Over

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under BATNA.

In negotiation, your best source of power is typically your best alternative to a negotiated agreement, or BATNA. When you are aware that you have an appealing alternative deal to the one you’re working on, you will be less tempted to accept an agreement that doesn’t meet your minimum requirements. A strong BATNA gives you … Read More 

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

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Business Negotiations.

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 

The Ladder of Inference: A Resource List

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

The ladder of inference is a model of decision making behavior originally developed by Chris Argyris and Donald Schoen and elaborated upon in the context of negotiation by Program on Negotiation co-founder Bruce Patton in his book Difficult Conversations, co-authored with fellow Program on Negotiation faculty members Douglas Stone and Sheila Heen. The model describes … Read More 

Managing Difficult Employees: Listening to Learn

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Dealing with Difficult People.

Managing difficult employees is one of the biggest challenges that leaders face. When employees seem unreasonable, belligerent, or uncooperative, managers may be tempted either to brush aside the problem or, alternatively, to fly off the handle. A better solution when managing difficult staff? Use negotiation techniques to get to the root of underlying problems. The following … Read More 

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

Posted by Katie Shonk & 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 

Teach Your Students Value Distribution with a Simulation on Solar Power

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

Do your students really understand the difference between value distribution and integrative negotiation, and have you given them a chance to practice their distributive bargaining skills? Do they understand that every negotiation includes elements of both value creation and value distribution? To help teach these key negotiation skills the Teaching Negotiation Resource Center (TNRC) has developed a … Read More 

Negotiation Research on Organizational Approaches to Negotiating Systems

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Negotiation Skills.

While most negotiation research aims to sharpen individual managers’ skills, there is growing scholarly and professional interest in an organizational approach to negotiation.A systemic perspective evaluates the training, authority, procedures, and resources that manager need to improve their companies’ “return on negotiation,” as consultant Danny Ertel puts it. Looking at negotiations broadly reveals important design … Read More 

Negotiating the Healthcare Industry

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

Teach Your Students to Negotiate One of the Most Critical Global Industries With an ongoing pandemic devastating communities around the world, the acute importance of the healthcare industry to community welfare has become even more apparent. Healthcare is one of the biggest economies in the world, with billions of dollars spent on treatments and associated research. … Read More 

Negotiating with Millennials – How to Overcome Cultural Differences in Communication

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Business Negotiations.

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

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Dealmaking.

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 

Win-Win Negotiations: Should You Consider a Deal Sweetener?

Posted by PON Staff & filed under Win-Win Negotiations.

The following question was asked of Andrew Wasynczuk, MBA Class of 1953 and Senior Lecturer of Business Administration Harvard Business School in the Negotiation Briefings monthly “Ask the Negotiation Coach” column: I run a midsized retail sports-apparel chain located in the southwestern United States. I’ve been searching for a seasoned executive to lead new store expansion … Read More 

Effective Leadership Techniques: Negotiating as an Agent

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Leadership Skills.

Following Joe Biden’s election as the next U.S. president, we revisit a 2014 Negotiation Briefings article, “When You’re Negotiating for Someone Else, Stay in the Deal,” about the significant role Biden negotiated for himself as vice president. As vice president to President Barack Obama from 2009 to 2017, Joe Biden worked hard to be, in his … Read More 

5 Tips for Improving Your Negotiation Skills

Posted by Katie Shonk & filed under Negotiation Skills.

The prospect of boosting our negotiation skills can be so overwhelming that we often delay taking the necessary steps we can follow to improve, such as taking time to prepare thoroughly. The following five guidelines will help you break this daunting task into a series of manageable—and often essential—strategies. … Read More 

Does Small Talk in Negotiation Offer Big Gains?

Posted by PON Staff & 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 

Running Simulations Online: Zoom Tips and Tricks

Posted by Lara SanPietro & filed under Teaching Negotiation.

Negotiation simulations, while incredibly useful teaching tools, can be difficult to orchestrate logistically, especially with large groups of participants. Moving classes online has made running simulations even more complex. Zoom, as well as many other video chat platforms, has lots of features to assist with running simulations online. To help educators prepare for this unpredictable … Read More