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If you merely want the deal, but do not need it, you are in total control of the situation. You will either be in the catbird seat or on your way out the door in this position. Unquestionably, this is not an approach for the timid or a person without a viable alternative to the deal.
Once having established this position with the adversary, Camp explains his view of negotiation. It is really about "pain." "Pain," he states, "is whatever the negotiator sees as the current or future problem" (p.160). Negotiation, therefore, in Campís view, is designed to make a decision "... in order to alleviate and take-away this current or future problem-this pain" (p.160).
The job of the negotiator is to make the adversaryís vision of their pain clear, offer a solution and let the adversary make the decision. Nothing else we do.
It is the negotiatorís role to use a variety of tactics to elicit information and create a vision for the adversary. As negotiations proceed, the negotiator uses interrogative questions, nutures the adversary, regulates pressure and never attempts to close the deal. A quick yes or a maybe is always unacceptable in this approach. Only when the adversary is certain and knows that yes is correct can there be a valuable agreement. Yes is a decision, reached by offering no as an acceptable alternative for both parties throughout the process. Done properly, yes really does mean yes. Given this, of course, the adversary will do everything in their power to fulfill the agreement.
Jim Campís approach is far more than outlined in this review. It is a work studded with an array of tactics, insights and illustrative examples of negotiations in action. To learn more about "decision-based" negotiations you will need to read his book. It is a perceptive look at negotiations by a top coach in the field.
The "decision-based" approach may become another string in your bow. It may also turn out to be the preference of your "adversary" in your next negotiation. In either case, a negotiator needs to know the variety of negotiating approaches in the field. Jim Camp makes an interesting and intriguing case for his strategic choice to start with no.
Jim Camp is a coach who has assisted negotiators through thousands of negotiations at more than 150 companies. His clients include major United States Fortune 500 corporations as well as smaller companies in a wide range of industries. Mr. Campís firm is Coach2100, Inc.
Reviewed by John D. Baker, Ph.D., Editor and Publisher
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