Category: Negotiation Tactics

What is a BATNA, and how do I utilize my BATNA in a Negotiation?

August 2, 2017

If you read MWI's Negotiation & Mediation Blog or want to improve your mediation or negotiation skills, you've probably encountered the term BATNA. Understanding and utilizing your BATNA is a significant source of power in negotiations. But what does this strange acronym stand for, and why does it matter so much?

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Working with a Representative: Principal-Agent Negotiation Strategies

July 20, 2017

As you prepare for negotiations, considering whether to hire an agent to represent your interests is an important decision. While there are many benefits to utilizing an agent's expertise and skill during your negotiation, there are also challenges and costs to weigh as well. We've put together some advice from the book Beyond Winning: Negotiating to Create Value in Deals and Disputes to help you get the most out of your principal-agent relationship in negotiation.

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Negotiation Skills: Dealing with Difficult Tactics

July 6, 2017

During a difficult negotiation, it can be easy to characterize the other side as mean, stupid, or crazy. The danger of these characterizations is that we lose focus on understanding the perspective and interests of the other party, and rather find ourselves throwing our hands in the air and getting frustrated. Instead of labeling them as difficult, we can focus on the difficult tactics they are utilizing. Examining their behavior at this level allows us to understand their motives and plan an appropriate and effective response.

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What are Interests?

June 23, 2017

Understanding what interests are and how to utilize them in negotiation are essential skills to creating more value in negotiations. However, identifying interests is not always as easy as it sounds. We tend to express what we want in negotiations as positions or demands rather than in terms of our interests. Understanding this difference between the positions and interests is key to improving your negotiation skills.

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How To Walk Away From a Deal in a Negotiation

June 16, 2017

In our last post, we discussed the questions you should ask yourself before walking away from a negotiation. Once you determine that you’re ready to end the conversation, it’s time to think about how to walk away from a deal. In this moment, it can feel satisfying to burn bridges and walk away in style. However, you have an opportunity to create value even when you are walking away from a negotiation. As you think about how to walk away from a deal, consider the following.

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When to Walk Away from a Deal in a Negotiation

June 8, 2017

Not every negotiation should end with an agreement. But how do you know when it’s the right time to walk away from a deal? Ask yourself the following questions to determine if you are ready to walk away.

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Negotiation Skills: Understanding the Ladder of Inference

June 1, 2017

Imagine a negotiation over buying a used car. Both the salesperson and the customer are looking at the same car in the same lot. However, each person has reached different conclusions about the suitability of the car for the customer. The salesperson is certain this car is perfect, while the customer can't wait to move on to something else. How can two people, receiving the same data at the same time, come to such different conclusions? By better understanding the process of how we reach conclusions, we can improve our negotiation techniques and more effectively influence others. In Peter

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What Is Your Negotiation Style?

May 11, 2017

Maybe you’ve been called a pushover. Or a team player. Or aggressive. Or maybe you’ve been called all three! Our negotiation style can – and should – change depending on the situation. Negotiation styles aren’t static, and we are most likely to have positive negotiations if we can adapt to different situations. There is no right or wrong negotiation style, but having awareness of the style we lean towards in different situations is key to becoming a more successful negotiator.

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Addressing Power Imbalances in Negotiation

May 4, 2017

Participants in MWI’s Negotiation Trainings often ask how they should handle significant power imbalances in negotiation, especially when they perceive themselves to be in a position of lower power. “A collaborative approach is all well and good,” they say, “but what happens when the other side doesn’t need to buy into that approach because they have the upper hand?” It’s essential to point out that, even if one party has less power by certain standards (financial resources, level of influence, etc..) they still have some power, and they can learn to leverage that power more

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Negotiation Preparation: Don’t Do it Alone

April 13, 2017

Most people go about the negotiation preparation process on their own. However, rarely can one person see all sides to a situation, consider all angles of a problem, develop all creative options for resolution, or realize all relevant objective standards on their own. For this reason, we go through a multi-step negotiation preparation process in our two-day negotiation workshops. Participants combine and build upon ideas from each other to create a more exhaustive list of their and the other side's interests, options for mutual gain, and objective standards that determine whether an outcome is

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