The Negotiator Magazine

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The authors explore each of these core concepts in turn. They begin by explaining each concept in depth. Once we know the concept, the next step is to recognize and address fairly, honestly and appropriately each of these universal human wants in ourselves and in our negotiating partners.

For each of these core wants, the authors lead the reader through ways to achieve success. How does one seek to understand another's view? How does one search to find merit in another's position? How does one close the circle by communicating these findings to the other party? The authors draw upon their rich negotiating experience to provide key illustrations of how to do each step in the process.

This is not intended to be a one-sided process. If there are methods to address the other parties' concerns about the appreciation of their ideas and positions, there needs also to be a process to assure that one's own position and reasoning is fully examined and considered. If not, of course, your own emotions will confound the negotiation as your wants remain unaddressed. We are talking about fairness here and it demands equality of treatment.

The authors offer a host of suggestions for achieving balance of treatment of all the parties. Methods as simple as proposing a time for the other parties to listen to your views, tailoring your message to your audience, focusing your remarks into a few main points and using metaphors to enhance understanding are among the many techniques proposed by the authors.

Just as the authors have provided the reader with methods to assure recognition and fair treatment of the first of these concerns, the work moves forward to explore each of the remaining core concerns. Always the process is consistent beginning with a discussion of each of the fundamental concepts and moving to methods to manage them successfully.

As one illustration of what the reader will find, let us touch briefly on one of the other fundamental human wants: the concern about autonomy. The authors bring the matter to life quickly by citing the situation of a managing partner in a firm who is faced with determining how to make various management decisions.

It is a simple, but potentially sensitive question about autonomy. Which decisions are the manager's alone? Which decisions require preliminary consultation with other members of the firm before a decision? Which decision types require negotiation to accomplish?

The method suggested for dealing with these matters proves to be eminently efficient and effective. Decisions are separated in three buckets: I-C-N:

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October 2005