Life Is Negotiation: Field-Tested Techniques in Emotional Intelligence and Tactical Empathy from an FBI Negotiator

Erase everything you’ve been taught about negotiation. You are not rational; there is no such thing as ‘fair’; compromise is the worst thing you can do; the real art of negotiation lies in mastering the intricacies of No, not Yes. I guarantee if you erase everything you think you know about negotiation and apply these methods in your next conversation, you’ll walk away surprised at … [ Read more ]

How Do You Grade Out as a Negotiator?

Most negotiation training focuses on what happens before and during the talks. Michael Wheeler’s new app helps users improve their skills after the deal is completed.

Negotiating the Cultural Minefield

In cross-cultural negotiations, be aware of cultural differences but don’t feel you have to adapt your behavior.

The Seven Myths of Win-Win Negotiation

It sounds fine on the face of it, but not everyone will get what they want and this is more likely to happen to you if you fail to spot the traps.

How to Spot a Liar

Key linguistic cues can help reveal dishonesty during business negotiations, whether it’s a flat-out lie or a deliberate omission of key information, according to research by Lyn M. Van Swol, Michael T. Braun, and Deepak Malhotra.

When Threats Are Better Than Anger

Conventional wisdom about showing anger in negotiations is sometimes contradictory: You should hide your true feelings behind a poker face, some say. Others recommend acting angry even if you’re not, as lawyers often do. New findings from negotiation researchers, however, reveal that both bits of advice are too simplistic, and they suggest a more effective tactic for tough negotiations would be making overt, well-timed threats. … [ Read more ]

The Art of Haggling

When teaching negotiation skills, many educators now focus almost exclusively on an interest-based approach in which both parties openly collaborate to find a mutually satisfying solution. However, argues HBS Professor Mike Wheeler, it’s important for students to know that there’s still a time and place for old-school haggling.

Too Much Information Clouds Negotiators’ Judgments

Most of us use information we have about another party to reach agreement when negotiating. But recent Stanford Graduate School of Business research warns that knowing our negotiation partners too well or having the wrong kind of information about them can actually produce less successful negotiating results than having no information.

Am I My Brother’s Keeper?

Whether we are dealing with business, global diplomacy, or family matters, we are all perplexed by the complexity of ethics in negotiation. This article introduces a simple, straightforward exercise that can lead to very meaningful discussions regarding ethics, negotiation tactics, and the ramifications and effectiveness of the implementation of those tactics and ethical decisions.

How to Negotiate Effectively

There is no shortage of expert opinion on how to negotiate, as a quick scan of any bookstore’s shelves will reveal. Some of that advice is valuable, but much of it is simply not practical. Too often, what negotiation gurus are really saying is that you have to be a particular kind of person: thick-skinned and supremely confident, afraid of nothing, and with a big-picture … [ Read more ]

Assess, Don’t Assume, Part I: Etiquette and National Culture in Negotiation

When facing a cross-border negotiation, the standard preparatory assessments—of the parties, their interests, their no-deal options, opportunities for and barriers to creating and claiming value, the most promising sequence and process design, etc.— should be informed and modified by two classes of potentially relevant cross-border factors, the general and the negotiation-specific. Drawing on considerable literature in cross-border and cross-cultural negotiation, this paper develops the … [ Read more ]

Assess, Don’t Assume, Part II: Negotiating Implications of Cross-Border Differences in Decision Making, Governance, and Political Economy

When facing a negotiation that crosses national borders and/or cultures, the standard preparatory assessments—of the parties, their interests, their no-deal options, opportunities for and barriers to creating and claiming value, the most promising sequence and process design, etc.—should be informed and modified by potentially relevant factors. Drawing on considerable literature in cross-border and cross-cultural negotiation, a two-paper series develops a four-level prescriptive framework for effectively … [ Read more ]

The New Deal: Negotiauctions

Whether negotiating to purchase a company or a house, dealmaking is becoming more complex. Harvard Business School professor Guhan Subramanian sees a new form arising, part negotiation, part auction. Call it the negotiauction. Here’s how to play the game.

Seeing Eye to Eye in Business Negotiations

With expressions like ‘out of sight, out of mind’, one would make a natural assumption that there’s a lot to be gained from direct face-to-face communication. However, according to Roderick Swaab, Assistant Professor of Organisational Behaviour at INSEAD, being able to see others and making eye contact may not always be the best thing.

Not-So-Small Talk

A successful deal may hinge on the ability to create trust — or uncover deception.

Perfecting The Art Of Silence In Negotiating

Silence is the secret tool of power negotiators. Knowing when to listen, not talk. Using facial expressions, not your voice, to make a point. Here are five tips on how perfecting the art of silence can make you a better negotiator.

Dealing with the ‘Irrational’ Negotiator

“Negotiators who are quick to label the other party ‘irrational’ do so at great potential cost to themselves,” say HBS professors Deepak Malhotra and Max H. Bazerman. Their new book, Negotiation Genius, combines expertise in psychology with practical examples to show how anyone can improve dealmaking skills. In this excerpt, Malhotra and Bazerman describe what to do when the other party’s behavior does not make … [ Read more ]

Mimicry a big plus in negotiations, a new study suggests

A study suggests that subtly imitating mannerisms, gestures, etc., of the other partner during a face-to-face negotiation can lead to greater success for both parties.

Brinkmanship in Business

A businessman often convinces himself that he is completely logical in his behavior when in fact the critical factor is his emotional bias compared to the emotional bias of his opposition. Unfortunately, some businessmen and students take the attitude that competition is some kind of impersonal, objective, colorless affair.

Editor’s Note: written in 1968…