💬

Never Split The Difference

📃The Accompanying PDF

Negotiation-One-Sheet.pdf248.2KB

🔖How would I describe this book in 1 sentence?

A framework to get along with people at the same time getting close to what you want.

🗺️What was the role of this book in my journey?

To be honest, the concept of negotiations had always made me feel uncomfortable. What to say, sometimes it frightened me.

This book gave a framework on how to approach not only the negotiations, but how to make any communication more meaningful.

I had been familiar with the topic of negotiations since I read "Start With No" by Jim Camp and "Getting More" by Stuart Diamond — so Chris Voss' book was a great refreshment to those memories.

The main challenge is that most of my day-to-day communication happens online, so I don't have a lot of opportunities for practice. However, when I'm having a chance, I apply and test some of the concepts from the book.

It is difficult to put yourself into the right mindset, but 2 weeks after reading I'm already seeing progress in my listening abilities, which helps me to navigate conversations better.

💡Key Insights

  1. Listening is not a passive activity. It is the most active activity you can think of
  2. Most people approach negotiations so preoccupied with the arguments that support their position that they are unable to listen attentively
  3. A good negotiator prepares, going in, to be ready for possible surprises; a great negotiator aims to use her skills to reveal the surprises she is certain to find.
  4. Whenever we negotiate, there’s no doubt we want to finish with a “Yes.” But we mistakenly conflate the positive value of that final “Yes” with a positive value of “Yes” in general. And because we see “No” as the opposite of “Yes,” we then assume that “No” is always a bad thing. Nothing could be further from the truth. Saying “No” gives the speaker the feeling of safety, security, and control. You use a question that prompts a “No” answer, and your counterpart feels that by turning you down he has proved that he’s in the driver’s seat. Good negotiators welcome— even invite—a solid “No” to start, as a sign that the other party is engaged and thinking
  5. Never split the difference. A hostage negotiator plays a unique role: he has to win. Can he say to a bank robber, “Okay, you’ve taken four hostages. Let’s split the difference—give me two, and we’ll call it a day?” No. A successful hostage negotiator has to get everything he asks for, without giving anything back of substance, and do so in a way that leaves the adversaries feeling as if they have a great relationship. His work is emotional intelligence on steroids
  6. We don’t compromise because it’s right; we compromise because it is easy and because it saves face. We compromise in order to say that at least we got half the pie. Distilled to its essence, we compromise to be safe. Most people in a negotiation are driven by fear or by the desire to avoid pain. Too few are driven by their actual goals
  7. Who has control in a conversation, the guy listening or the guy talking? The listener, of course. That’s because the talker is revealing information while the listener, if he’s trained well, is directing the conversation toward his own goals. He’s harnessing the talker’s energy for his own ends
  8. "Yes" is nothing without "How". While an agreement is nice, a contract is better, and a signed check is best. You don’t get your profits with the agreement. They come upon implementation. Success isn’t the hostage-taker saying, “Yes, we have a deal”; success comes afterward, when the freed hostage says to your face, “Thank you.”
  9. Be wary of two telling signs that your counterpart doesn’t believe the idea is theirs. As I’ve noted, when they say, “You’re right,” it’s often a good indicator they are not vested in what is being discussed. And when you push for implementation and they say, “I’ll try,” you should get a sinking feeling in your stomach. Because this really means, “I plan to fail.”
  10. It only takes one bit player to screw up a deal. When implementation happens by committee, the support of that committee is key. You always have to identify and unearth their motivations, even if you haven’t yet identified each individual on that committee. That can be easy as asking a few calibrated questions, like “How does this affect the rest of your team?” or “How on board are the people not on this call?” or simply “What do your colleagues see as their main challenges in this area?”
  11. The 7-38-55 percent rule. That is, only 7 percent of a message is based on the words while 38 percent comes from the tone of voice and 55 percent from the speaker’s body language and face
  12. The Rule of Three. The Rule of Three is simply getting the other guy to agree to the same thing three times in the same conversation. It’s tripling the strength of whatever dynamic you’re trying to drill into at the moment. In doing so, it uncovers problems before they happen. It’s really hard to repeatedly lie or fake conviction.
  13. The Pinocchio Effect. Most people offer obvious telltale signs when they’re lying. Not a growing nose, but close enough. In a study of the components of lying, Harvard Business School professor Deepak Malhotra and his coauthors found that, on average, liars use more words than truth tellers and use far more third-person pronouns. They start talking about him, her, it, one, they, and their rather than I, in order to put some distance between themselves and the lie
  14. Notice that you can’t buy anything for $2, but you can buy a million things for $1.99. How does a cent change anything? It doesn’t. But it makes a difference every time. We just like $1.99 more than $2.00 even if we know it’s a trick
  15. In every negotiating session, there are different kinds of information. There are those things we know, like our counterpart’s name and their offer and our experiences from other negotiations. Those are known knowns. There are those things we are certain that exist but we don’t know, like the possibility that the other side might get sick and leave us with another counterpart. Those are known unknowns and they are like poker wild cards; you know they’re out there but you don’t know who has them. But most important are those things we don’t know that we don’t know, pieces of information we’ve never imagined but that would be game-changing if uncovered. Maybe our counterpart wants the deal to fail because he’s leaving for a competitor. These unknown unknowns are Black Swans.
  16. One can only be an exceptional negotiator, and a great person, by both listening and speaking clearly and empathetically; by treating counterparts—and oneself—with dignity and respect; and most of all by being honest about what one wants and what one can—and cannot—do. Every negotiation, every conversation, every moment of life, is a series of small conflicts that, managed well, can rise to creative beauty. Embrace them.
Insights

🦅Key Principles

  1. Don’t commit to assumptions; instead, view them as hypotheses and use the negotiation to test them rigorously
  2. Uncover as much information as possible. Negotiation is not an act of battle; it’s a process of discovery
  3. Make your sole and all-encompassing focus on the other person and what they have to say
  4. Slow. It. Down. If we’re too much in a hurry, people can feel as if they’re not being heard
  5. Put a smile on your face
  6. Use the positive and playful voice as your default tone
  7. Use the late-night FM DJ voice to selectively make a point and create an aura of authority
  8. Don't talk in direct and assertive manner
  9. Mirror: repeat the last three words (or the critical one to three words) of what someone has just said
  10. Imagine yourself in your counterpart’s situation
  11. Focus on resolving the negatives. Clear the road before advertising the destination
  12. Do an accusation audit. List the worst things that the other party could say about you
  13. Say the worst things that the other party could say about you before the other person can. Take the sting out
  14. Label your counterpart’s fears to diffuse their power. Use statements like "It seems like... It sounds like... It looks like..." to encourage positive perceptions
  15. Pause. After you label a barrier or mirror a statement, let it sink in. Don’t worry, the other party will fill the silence
  16. Break the habit of attempting to get people to say “yes.”
  17. “No” is not a failure. "No" is just the start of a negotiation
  18. “Yes” is the final goal of a negotiation, but don’t aim for it at the start. Asking someone for “Yes” too quickly in a conversation gets his guard up and paints you as an untrustworthy salesman
  19. Saying “No” makes the speaker feel safe, secure, and in control. So trigger it
  20. Make your counterpart listen and engage with you by forcing them into a "No" by mislabeling one of their emotions
  21. Negotiate in their world. The other party must convince themselves that the solution you want is their own idea
  22. If a potential business partner is ignoring you, contact them with a clear and concise “No”- oriented question that suggests that you are ready to walk away
  23. Don't compromise. Never split the difference
  24. Deadlines are almost never ironclad. Deadlines are often arbitrary, almost always flexible, and hardly ever trigger the consequences we think—or are told—they will
  25. Use deadlines to your advantage. Approaching deadlines entice people to rush the negotiating process and do impulsive things that are against their best interests
  26. No deal is better than a bad deal
  27. Don't hide your deadline
  28. When you are accused in unfairness (e.g. "We just want what's fair", "I don't think it's fair"), ask other party about how you're mistreating them. Take a deep breath, then say, “Okay, I apologize. Let’s stop everything and go back to where I started treating you unfairly and we’ll fix it.”
  29. When someone insists that their offer is fair (e.g. “We’ve given you a fair offer.”), mirror their "Fair" back to them. Respond with “Fair?” and then pause, follow that with a label: “It seems like you’re ready to provide the evidence that supports that”
  30. Strive for a reputation of being fair. Your reputation precedes you
  31. Understand other parties' emotional drivers and you can frame the benefits of any deal in language that will resonate
  32. Anchor their emotions to prepare for a loss. Before you make an offer, emotionally anchor them by saying how bad it will be
  33. Make sure your counterpart sees that there is something to lose by inaction
  34. Let the other party name the price first when you are not confident that you know the market value of what you're buying or selling
  35. Establish a range where low number in the range is the number you want
  36. Pivot to nonmonetary terms. Don't get fixated on numbers
  37. When you do talk numbers, use odd ones, e.g. $37,263. Numbers that end in 0 inevitably feel like temporary placeholders
  38. Surprise with a gift to trigger a mood of generosity
  39. Don't try to negotiate in a firefight. Wait for the environment to calm down
  40. There is always a team on the other side. If you are not influencing those behind the table, you are vulnerable
  41. Avoid questions that can be answered with “Yes” or tiny pieces of information. These require little thought and inspire the human need for reciprocity; you will be expected to give something back
  42. Ask calibrated questions that start with the words “How” or “What.” By implicitly asking the other party for help, these questions will give your counterpart an illusion of control and will inspire them to speak at length, revealing important information
  43. Don’t ask questions that start with “Why” unless you want your counterpart to defend a goal that serves you. “Why” is always an accusation, in any language
  44. Calibrate your questions to point your counterpart toward solving your problem. This will encourage them to expend their energy on devising a solution
  45. Bite your tongue. Control your emotional responses during a negotiation
  46. When you are verbally assaulted, do not counterattack. Instead, disarm your counterpart by asking a calibrated question
  47. Don’t try to force your opponent to admit that you are right. Aggressive confrontation is the enemy of constructive negotiation
  48. Make the person feel understood and positively affirmed in that understanding. Create an unconditional positive regard
  49. “That’s right” is better than “yes.” Strive for it. Reaching “that’s right” in a negotiation creates breakthroughs
  50. Use a summary to trigger a “that’s right.” The building blocks of a good summary are a label combined with paraphrasing. Identify, rearticulate, and emotionally affirm “the world according to . . .”
  51. “Yes” is nothing without “How.”
  52. Ask calibrated “How” questions, and ask them again and again
  53. Ask calibrated "How" questions to define success. E.g. “How will we know we’re on track?”, “How will we address things if we find we’re off track?”
  54. Use “How” questions to shape the negotiating environment. Use “How can I do that?” as a gentle version of “No.”
  55. Don’t just pay attention to the people you’re negotiating with directly; always identify the motivations of the players “behind the table.”
  56. When someone’s tone of voice or body language does not align with the meaning of the words they say, use labels to discover the source of the incongruence
  57. When the "Yes" was achieved, confirm the counterpart's agreement at least three times
  58. Be wary of "You're right" and "I'll try". Usually, they are signs of failure. When you hear that, dive back in with calibrated “How” questions until they define the terms of successful implementation in their own voice. Follow up by summarizing what they have said to get a “That’s right.”
  59. Pay attention to the use of pronouns. "I", "me" — a person is not an authority. "We", "they", "them" — more likely you're dealing with the decision-maker
  60. You can say "No" four times before saying the word
  61. When lying, most people talk about him, her, it, one, they, and their rather than I, in order to put some distance between themselves and the lie
  62. Use your own name to make yourself a real person to the other side and even get your own personal discount
  63. Stay focused to the very end. Do not let your mind wander
  64. Be yourself at the bargaining table and add to your strengths
  65. Don’t treat others the way you want to be treated; treat them the way they need to be treated
  66. Identify your counterpart’s negotiating style. Once you know whether they are Accommodator, Assertive, or Analyst, you’ll know the correct way to approach them
  67. Prepare, prepare, prepare. Design an ambitious but legitimate goal and then game out the labels, calibrated questions, and responses you’ll use to get there
  68. Get ready to take a punch — ridiculously low offer, an extreme anchor
  69. The guy across the table is not the problem; the situation is. Set boundaries, and learn to take a punch or punch back, without anger
  70. If the other side pushes you to go first, instead of naming a price, allude to an incredibly high number that someone else might charge
  71. Prepare an Ackerman plan: 65, 85, 95, 100 percent offers and calibrated questions. Decrease raises in steps and end on non-round numbers
  72. Retain a beginner's mind. Be ready for the unknown unknowns
  73. Don’t look to verify what you expect. If you do, that’s what you’ll find
  74. Interrogate your world
  75. There’s always leverage: as an essentially emotional concept, it can be manufactured whether it exists or not
  76. Work to understand the other side’s “religion.”
  77. Exploit the similarity principle. People are more apt to concede to someone they share a cultural similarity with, so dig for what makes them tick and show that you share common ground
  78. When someone seems irrational or crazy, they most likely aren’t. Faced with this situation, search for constraints, hidden desires, and bad information
  79. Get face time with your counterpart. Ten minutes of face time often reveals more than days of research
  80. Review everything you hear. You will not hear everything the first time, so double-check. Compare notes with your team members. You will often discover new information that will help you advance the negotiation
  81. Use backup listeners whose only job is to listen between the lines. They will hear things you miss
  82. Always use "because" when making a request
  83. Overcome your fear of conflict and navigate it with empathy
  84. Don't avoid honest, clear conflict
  85. Black Swans are leverage multipliers. Remember the three types of leverage: positive (the ability to give someone what they want); negative (the ability to hurt someone); and normative (using your counterpart’s norms to bring them around)

Negotiating a higher salary

  1. Be pleasantly persistent on nonsalary terms
  2. Once you've negotiated a salary, define success for your position as well as metrics for your next raise.
  3. Sell yourself, and your success, as a way they can validate their own intelligence and broadcast it to the rest of the company. Spark their interest in your success and gain an unofficial mentor

Negotiating a higher salary

Principles

✍️Notes

Chapter 2: Be A Mirror

Life is negotiation.

  • Negotiation serves two distinct, vital life functions— information gathering and behavior influencing—and includes almost any interaction where each party wants something from the other side. Your career, your finances, your reputation, your love life, even the fate of your kids— at some point all of these hinge on your ability to negotiate.
  • Getting what you want out of life is all about getting what you want from—and with— other people. Conflict between two parties is inevitable in all relationships. So it’s useful—crucial, even—to know how to engage in that conflict to get what you want without inflicting damage
  • The first step to achieving a mastery of daily negotiation is to get over your aversion to negotiating. You don’t need to like it; you just need to understand that’s how the world works
  • A hostage negotiator plays a unique role: he has to win. Can he say to a bank robber, “Okay, you’ve taken four hostages. Let’s split the difference—give me two, and we’ll call it a day?” No. A successful hostage negotiator has to get everything he asks for, without giving anything back of substance, and do so in a way that leaves the adversaries feeling as if they have a great relationship. His work is emotional intelligence on steroids

HOW TO CONFRONT—AND GET YOUR WAY— WITHOUT CONFRONTATION

It’s just four simple steps:

1. Use the late-night FM DJ voice. 2. Start with “I’m sorry . . .” 3. Mirror. 4. Silence. At least four seconds, to let the mirror work its magic on your counterpart. 5. Repeat.

Chapter 2 lessons

  • A good negotiator prepares, going in, to be ready for possible surprises; a great negotiator aims to use her skills to reveal the surprises she is certain to find.
  • Don’t commit to assumptions; instead, view them as hypotheses and use the negotiation to test them rigorously.
  • People who view negotiation as a battle of arguments become overwhelmed by the voices in their head. Negotiation is not an act of battle; it’s a process of discovery. The goal is to uncover as much information as possible.
  • To quiet the voices in your head, make your sole and all-encompassing focus the other person and what they have to say.
  • Slow. It. Down. Going too fast is one of the mistakes all negotiators are prone to making. If we’re too much in a hurry, people can feel as if they’re not being heard. You risk undermining the rapport and trust you’ve built.
  • Put a smile on your face. When people are in a positive frame of mind, they think more quickly, and are more likely to collaborate and problemsolve (instead of fight and resist). Positivity creates mental agility in both you and your counterpart.
  • There are three voice tones available to negotiators:
    • The late-night FM DJ voice: Use selectively to make a point. Inflect your voice downward, keeping it calm and slow. When done properly, you create an aura of authority and trustworthiness without triggering defensiveness.
    • The positive/playful voice: Should be your default voice. It’s the voice of an easygoing, good-natured person. Your attitude is light and encouraging. The key here is to relax and smile while you’re talking.
    • The direct or assertive voice: Used rarely. Will cause problems and create pushback.
  • Mirrors work magic. Repeat the last three words (or the critical one to three words) of what someone has just said. We fear what’s different and are drawn to what’s similar. Mirroring is the art of insinuating similarity, which facilitates bonding. Use mirrors to encourage the other side to empathize and bond with you, keep people talking, buy your side time to regroup, and encourage your counterparts to reveal their strategy.

Chapter 3: Don't Feel Their Pain, Label It

  • Labeling is a way of validating someone’s emotion by acknowledging it. Give someone’s emotion a name and you show you identify with how that person feels. It gets you close to someone without asking about external factors you know nothing about (“How’s your family?”). Think of labeling as a shortcut to intimacy, a time-saving emotional hack.
  • Labeling has a special advantage when your counterpart is tense. Exposing negative thoughts to daylight—“It looks like you don’t want to go back to jail”—makes them seem less frightening.
  • Labeling an emotion—applying rational words to a fear—disrupts its raw intensity.
  • Labeling is a simple, versatile skill that lets you reinforce a good aspect of the negotiation, or diffuse a negative one. But it has very specific rules about form and delivery. That makes it less like chatting than like a formal art such as Chinese calligraphy.
  • For most people, it’s one of the most awkward negotiating tools to use. Before they try it the first time, my students almost always tell me they expect their counterpart to jump up and shout, “Don’t you dare tell me how I feel!” Let me let you in on a secret: people never even notice
  • But no matter how they end, labels almost always begin with roughly the same words: It seems like . . . It sounds like . . . It looks like . . .
  • Notice we said “It sounds like . . .” and not “I’m hearing that . . .” That’s because the word “I” gets people’s guard up. When you say “I,” it says you’re more interested in yourself than the other person, and it makes you take personal responsibility for the words that follow—and the offense they might cause.
  • But when you phrase a label as a neutral statement of understanding, it encourages your counterpart to be responsive. They’ll usually give a longer answer than just “yes” or “no.” And if they disagree with the label, that’s okay. You can always step back and say, “I didn’t say that was what it was. I just said it seems like that.”
  • The last rule of labeling is silence. Once you’ve thrown out a label, be quiet and listen. We all have a tendency to expand on what we’ve said, to finish, “It seems like you like the way that shirt looks,” with a specific question like “Where did you get it?” But a label’s power is that it invites the other person to reveal himself
GET A SEAT—AND AN UPGRADE—ON A SOLD-OUT FLIGHT

In front of him at the gate, a very aggressive couple was yelling at the gate agent, who was barely looking at them as she tapped on the computer in front of her; she was clearly making every effort not to scream back. After she’d said, “There’s nothing I can do,” five times, the angry couple finally gave up and left. To start, watch how Ryan turns that heated exchange to his advantage. Following on the heels of an argument is a great position for a negotiator, because your counterpart is desperate for an empathetic connection. Smile, and you’re already an improvement. “Hi, Wendy, I’m Ryan. It seems like they were pretty upset.” This labels the negative and establishes a rapport based on empathy. This in turn encourages Wendy to elaborate on her situation, words Ryan then mirrors to invite her to go further. “Yeah. They missed their connection. We’ve had a fair amount of delays because of the weather.” “The weather?” After Wendy explains how the delays in the Northeast had rippled through the system, Ryan again labels the negative and then mirrors her answer to encourage her to delve further. “It seems like it’s been a hectic day.” “There’ve been a lot of ‘irate consumers,’ you know? I mean, I get it, even though I don’t like to be yelled at. A lot of people are trying to get to Austin for the big game.” “The big game?” “UT is playing Ole Miss football and every flight into Austin has been booked solid.” “Booked solid?” Now let’s pause. Up to this point, Ryan has been using labels and mirrors to build a relationship with Wendy. To her it must seem like idle chatter, though, because he hasn’t asked for anything. Unlike the angry couple, Ryan is acknowledging her situation. His words ping-pong between “What’s that?” and “I hear you,” both of which invite her to elaborate. Now that the empathy has been built, she lets slip a piece of information he can use. “Yeah, all through the weekend. Though who knows how many people will make the flights. The weather’s probably going to reroute a lot of people through a lot of different places.” Here’s where Ryan finally swoops in with an ask. But notice how he acts: not assertive or coldly logical, but with empathy and labeling that acknowledges her situation and tacitly puts them in the same boat. “Well, it seems like you’ve been handling the rough day pretty well,” he says. “I was also affected by the weather delays and missed my connecting flight. It seems like this flight is likely booked solid, but with what you said, maybe someone affected by the weather might miss this connection. Is there any possibility a seat will be open?” Listen to that riff: Label, tactical empathy, label. And only then a request. At this point, Wendy says nothing and begins typing on her computer. Ryan, who’s eager not to talk himself out of a possible deal, engages in some silence. After thirty seconds, Wendy prints a boarding pass and hands it to Ryan, explaining that there were a few seats that were supposed to be filled by people who would now arrive much later than the flight’s departure. To make Ryan’s success even better, she puts him in Economy Plus seating.

  • Do an accusation audit. The first step of doing so is listing every terrible thing your counterpart could say about you, in what I call an accusation audit

Chapter 3 lessons

  • Imagine yourself in your counterpart’s situation. The beauty of empathy is that it doesn’t demand that you agree with the other person’s ideas (you may well find them crazy). But by acknowledging the other person’s situation, you immediately convey that you are listening. And once they know that you are listening, they may tell you something that you can use.
  • The reasons why a counterpart will not make an agreement with you are often more powerful than why they will make a deal, so focus first on clearing the barriers to agreement. Denying barriers or negative influences gives them credence; get them into the open
  • Pause. After you label a barrier or mirror a statement, let it sink in. Don’t worry, the other party will fill the silence.
  • Label your counterpart’s fears to diffuse their power. We all want to talk about the happy stuff, but remember, the faster you interrupt action in your counterpart’s amygdala, the part of the brain that generates fear, the faster you can generate feelings of safety, well-being, and trust.
  • List the worst things that the other party could say about you and say them before the other person can. Performing an accusation audit in advance prepares you to head off negative dynamics before they take root. And because these accusations often sound exaggerated when said aloud, speaking them will encourage the other person to claim that quite the opposite is true.
  • Remember you’re dealing with a person who wants to be appreciated and understood. So use labels to reinforce and encourage positive perceptions and dynamics.

Chapter 4: Beware "Yes" — Master "No"

  • “No” is the start of the negotiation, not the end of it. We’ve been conditioned to fear the word “No.” But it is a statement of perception far more often than of fact. It seldom means, “I have considered all the facts and made a rational choice.” Instead, “No” is often a decision, frequently temporary, to maintain the status quo. Change is scary, and “No” provides a little protection from that scariness
  • When someone tells you “No,” you need to rethink the word in one of its alternative—and much more real— meanings:
    • I am not yet ready to agree;
    • You are making me feel uncomfortable;
    • I do not understand;
    • I don’t think I can afford it;
    • I want something else;
    • I need more information; or
    • I want to talk it over with someone else
  • There are actually three kinds of “Yes”: Counterfeit, Confirmation, and Commitment.
    • A counterfeit “yes” is one in which your counterpart plans on saying “no” but either feels “yes” is an easier escape route or just wants to disingenuously keep the conversation going to obtain more information or some other kind of edge.
    • A confirmation “yes” is generally innocent, a reflexive response to a black-or-white question; it’s sometimes used to lay a trap but mostly it’s just simple affirmation with no promise of action.
    • And a commitment “yes” is the real deal; it’s a true agreement that leads to action, a “yes” at the table that ends with a signature on the contract. The commitment “yes” is what you want, but the three types sound almost the same so you have to learn how to recognize which one is being used
  • Whenever we negotiate, there’s no doubt we want to finish with a “Yes.” But we mistakenly conflate the positive value of that final “Yes” with a positive value of “Yes” in general. And because we see “No” as the opposite of “Yes,” we then assume that “No” is always a bad thing. Nothing could be further from the truth. Saying “No” gives the speaker the feeling of safety, security, and control. You use a question that prompts a “No” answer, and your counterpart feels that by turning you down he has proved that he’s in the driver’s seat. Good negotiators welcome— even invite—a solid “No” to start, as a sign that the other party is engaged and thinking
  • “No” has a lot of skills.
    • “No” allows the real issues to be brought forth;
    • “No” protects people from making—and lets them correct—ineffective decisions;
    • “No” slows things down so that people can freely embrace their decisions and the agreements they enter into;
    • “No” helps people feel safe, secure, emotionally comfortable, and in control of their decisions;
    • “No” moves everyone’s efforts forward.
  • No “No” means no go
  • You send an email to someone you’re trying to do business with and they ignore you. Then you send a polite follow-up and they stonewall you again. So what do you do? You provoke a “No” with this one-sentence email.
    • Have you given up on this project?
  • We’ve instrumentalized niceness as a way of greasing the social wheels, yet it’s often a ruse. We’re polite and we don’t disagree to get through daily existence with the least degree of friction. But by turning niceness into a lubricant, we’ve leeched it of meaning. A smile and a nod might signify “Get me out of here!” as much as it means “Nice to meet you.”

Chapter 4 lessons

  • Break the habit of attempting to get people to say “yes.” Being pushed for “yes” makes people defensive. Our love of hearing “yes” makes us blind to the defensiveness we ourselves feel when someone is pushing us to say it.
  • “No” is not a failure. We have learned that “No” is the anti-“Yes” and therefore a word to be avoided at all costs. But it really often just means “Wait” or “I’m not comfortable with that.” Learn how to hear it calmly. It is not the end of the negotiation, but the beginning.
  • “Yes” is the final goal of a negotiation, but don’t aim for it at the start. Asking someone for “Yes” too quickly in a conversation—“Do you like to drink water, Mr. Smith?”—gets his guard up and paints you as an untrustworthy salesman.
  • Saying “No” makes the speaker feel safe, secure, and in control, so trigger it. By saying what they don’t want, your counterpart defines their space and gains the confidence and comfort to listen to you. That’s why “Is now a bad time to talk?” is always better than “Do you have a few minutes to talk?”
  • Sometimes the only way to get your counterpart to listen and engage with you is by forcing them into a “No.” That means intentionally mislabeling one of their emotions or desires or asking a ridiculous question—like, “It seems like you want this project to fail”—that can only be answered negatively.
  • Negotiate in their world. Persuasion is not about how bright or smooth or forceful you are. It’s about the other party convincing themselves that the solution you want is their own idea. So don’t beat them with logic or brute force. Ask them questions that open paths to your goals. It’s not about you.
  • If a potential business partner is ignoring you, contact them with a clear and concise “No”- oriented question that suggests that you are ready to walk away. “Have you given up on this project?” works wonders.

Chapter 5: Trigger The Two Words That Immediately Transform Any Negotiation

  • The sweetest two words in any negotiation are actually “That’s right.”
  • The vast majority of us, however, as Rogers explained, come to expect that love, praise, and approval are dependent on saying and doing the things people (initially, our parents) consider correct. That is, because for most of us the positive regard we experience is conditional, we develop a habit of hiding who we really are and what we really think, instead calibrating our words to gain approval but disclosing little. Which is why so few social interactions lead to actual behavior change.
  • Consider the typical patient with severe coronary heart disease recovering from open-heart surgery. The doctor tells the patient: “This surgery isn’t a cure. The only way to truly prolong your life is to make the following behavior changes . . .” The grateful patient responds: “Yes, yes, yes, of course, Doctor! This is my second chance. I will change!” And do they? Study after study has shown that, no, nothing changes; two years after their operation, more than 90 percent of patients haven’t changed their lifestyle at all.
  • Driving toward “that’s right” is a winning strategy in all negotiations. But hearing “you’re right” is a disaster.
  • Why is “you’re right” the worst answer? Consider this: Whenever someone is bothering you, and they just won’t let up, and they won’t listen to anything you have to say, what do you tell them to get them to shut up and go away? “You’re right.” It works every time. Tell people “you’re right” and they get a happy smile on their face and leave you alone for at least twenty-four hours. But you haven’t agreed to their position. You have used “you’re right” to get them to quit bothering you
  • “Sleeping in the same bed and dreaming different dreams” is an old Chinese expression that describes the intimacy of partnership (whether in marriage or in business) without the communication necessary to sustain it.
  • With each party having its own set of objectives, its own goals and motivations, the truth is that the conversational niceties—the socially lubricating “yeses” and “you’re rights” that get thrown out fast and furious early in any interaction—are not in any way a substitute for real understanding between you and your partner.
  • The power of getting to that understanding, and not to some simple “yes,” is revelatory in the art of negotiation. The moment you’ve convinced someone that you truly understand her dreams and feelings (the whole world that she inhabits), mental and behavioral change becomes possible, and the foundation for a breakthrough has been laid.

Chapter 5 lessons

  • Creating unconditional positive regard opens the door to changing thoughts and behaviors. Humans have an innate urge toward socially constructive behavior. The more a person feels understood, and positively affirmed in that understanding, the more likely that urge for constructive behavior will take hold.
  • “That’s right” is better than “yes.” Strive for it. Reaching “that’s right” in a negotiation creates breakthroughs.
  • Use a summary to trigger a “that’s right.” The building blocks of a good summary are a label combined with paraphrasing. Identify, rearticulate, and emotionally affirm “the world according to . . .”

Chapter 6: Bend Their Reality

  • There is always leverage. Once you understand that subterranean world of unspoken needs and thoughts, you’ll discover a universe of variables that can be leveraged to change your counterpart’s needs and expectations
  • We don’t compromise because it’s right; we compromise because it is easy and because it saves face. We compromise in order to say that at least we got half the pie. Distilled to its essence, we compromise to be safe. Most people in a negotiation are driven by fear or by the desire to avoid pain. Too few are driven by their actual goals
  • Whether your deadline is real and absolute or merely a line in the sand, it can trick you into believing that doing a deal now is more important than getting a good deal
  • Car dealers are prone to give you the best price near the end of the month, when their transactions are assessed. And corporate salespeople work on a quarterly basis and are most vulnerable as the quarter comes to a close
  • The most powerful word in negotiations is “Fair.” As human beings, we’re mightily swayed by how much we feel we have been respected
  • In fact, of the three ways that people drop this F-bomb, only one is positive:
    • The most common use is a judo-like defensive move that destabilizes the other side. This manipulation usually takes the form of something like, “We just want what’s fair.”
      • If you’re on the business end of this accusation, you need to realize that the other side might not be trying to pick your pocket; like my friend, they might just be overwhelmed by circumstance. The best response either way is to take a deep breath and restrain your desire to concede. Then say, “Okay, I apologize. Let’s stop everything and go back to where I started treating you unfairly and we’ll fix it.”
    • The second use of the F-bomb is more nefarious. In this one, your counterpart will basically accuse you of being dense or dishonest by saying, “We’ve given you a fair offer.” It’s a terrible little jab meant to distract your attention and manipulate you into giving in
      • If you find yourself in this situation, the best reaction is to simply mirror the “F” that has just been lobbed at you. “Fair?” you’d respond, pausing to let the word’s power do to them as it was intended to do to you. Follow that with a label: “It seems like you’re ready to provide the evidence that supports that,” which alludes to opening their books or otherwise handing over information that will either contradict their claim to fairness or give you more data to work with than you had previously. Right away, you declaw the attack.
    • The last use of the F-word is my favorite because it’s positive and constructive. It sets the stage for honest and empathetic negotiation. Here’s how I use it: Early on in a negotiation, I say, “I want you to feel like you are being treated fairly at all times. So please stop me at any time if you feel I’m being unfair, and we’ll address it.”
  • Prospect theory tactics in negotiations:
    • Anchor their emotions
    • To bend your counterpart’s reality, you have to start with the basics of empathy. So start out with an accusation audit acknowledging all of their fears. By anchoring their emotions in preparation for a loss, you inflame the other side’s loss aversion so that they’ll jump at the chance to avoid it

      “I got a lousy proposition for you,” I said, and paused until each asked me to go on. “By the time we get off the phone, you’re going to think I’m a lousy businessman. You’re going to think I can’t budget or plan. You’re going to think Chris Voss is a big talker. His first big project ever out of the FBI, he screws it up completely. He doesn’t know how to run an operation. And he might even have lied to me.” And then, once I’d anchored their emotions in a minefield of low expectations, I played on their loss aversion. “Still, I wanted to bring this opportunity to you before I took it to someone else,” I said

    • Let the other guy go first ... most of the time
    • The real issue is that neither side has perfect information going to the table. This often means you don’t know enough to open with confidence. That’s especially true anytime you don’t know the market value of what you are buying or selling

      That said, you’ve got to be careful when you let the other guy anchor. You have to prepare yourself psychically to withstand the first offer

      If you really know the market and you’re dealing with an equally informed pro, you might offer a number just to make the negotiation go faster.

      Here’s my personal advice on whether or not you want to be the shark that eats a rookie counterpart. Just remember, your reputation precedes you. I’ve run into CEOs whose reputation was to always badly beat their counterpart and pretty soon no one would deal with them

    • Establish a range
    • In a recent study, Columbia Business School psychologists found that job applicants who named a range received significantly higher overall salaries than those who offered a number, especially if their range was a “bolstering range,” in which the low number in the range was what they actually wanted.

      Understand, if you offer a range (and it’s a good idea to do so) expect them to come in at the low end.

    • Pivot to nonmonetary terms
    • People get hung up on “How much?” But don’t deal with numbers in isolation. That leads to bargaining, a series of rigid positions defined by emotional views of fairness and pride. Negotiation is a more intricate and subtle dynamic than that.

      One of the easiest ways to bend your counterpart’s reality to your point of view is by pivoting to nonmonetary terms. After you’ve anchored them high, you can make your offer seem reasonable by offering things that aren’t important to you but could be important to them. Or if their offer is low you could ask for things that matter more to you than them. Since this is sometimes difficult, what we often do is throw out examples to start the brainstorming process

    • When you do talk numbers, use odd ones
    • Every number has a psychological significance that goes beyond its value

      The biggest thing to remember is that numbers that end in 0 inevitably feel like temporary placeholders, guesstimates that you can easily be negotiated off of. But anything you throw out that sounds less rounded—say, $37,263—feels like a figure that you came to as a result of thoughtful calculation. Such numbers feel serious and permanent to your counterpart, so use them to fortify your offers

    • Surprise with a gift
    • You can get your counterpart into a mood of generosity by staking an extreme anchor and then, after their inevitable first rejection, offering them a wholly unrelated surprise gift

How to negotiate a better salary?

  • Be pleasantly persistent on nonsalary terms
    • Pleasant persistence is a kind of emotional anchoring that creates empathy with the boss and builds the right psychological environment for constructive discussion. And the more you talk about nonsalary terms, the more likely you are to hear the full range of their options
  • Salary terms without success terms is russian roulette
    • Once you’ve negotiated a salary, make sure to define success for your position—as well as metrics for your next raise
  • Spark their interest in your success and gain an unofficial mentor
    • When you are selling yourself to a manager, sell yourself as more than a body for a job; sell yourself, and your success, as a way they can validate their own intelligence and broadcast it to the rest of the company. Make sure they know you’ll act as a flesh-and-blood argument for their importance. Once you’ve bent their reality to include you as their ambassador, they’ll have a stake in your success
    • Ask: “What does it take to be successful here?”

Chapter 6 lessons

  • Don't compromise. Never split the difference.
    • So don’t settle and—here’s a simple rule—never split the difference. Creative solutions are almost always preceded by some degree of risk, annoyance, confusion, and conflict. Accommodation and compromise produce none of that. You’ve got to embrace the hard stuff. That’s where the great deals are. And that’s what great negotiators do.
  • Use deadlines to your advantage. Make time your ally
    • Whether your deadline is real and absolute or merely a line in the sand, it can trick you into believing that doing a deal now is more important than getting a good deal
  • Deadlines are almost never ironclad. Deadlines are often arbitrary, almost always flexible, and hardly ever trigger the consequences we think—or are told—they will
    • Deadlines are the bogeymen of negotiation, almost exclusively self-inflicted figments of our imagination, unnecessarily unsettling us for no good reason
    • What’s more important is engaging in the process and having a feel for how long that will take. You may see that you have more to accomplish than time will actually allow before the clock runs out
  • No deal is better than a bad deal
  • Don't ever hide your deadline
  • When you are accused in unfairness (e.g. "We just want what's fair", "I don't think it's fair"), take a deep breath, then say, “Okay, I apologize. Let’s stop everything and go back to where I started treating you unfairly and we’ll fix it.”
  • When someone insists that their offer is fair (e.g. “We’ve given you a fair offer.”), mirror their "Fair" back to them. Respond with “Fair?” and the pause, follow that with a label: “It seems like you’re ready to provide the evidence that supports that,”
  • Strive for a reputation of being fair. Your reputation precedes you.
  • Know the emotional drivers and you can frame the benefits of any deal in language that will resonate
  • All negotiations are defined by a network of subterranean desires and needs. Don’t let yourself be fooled by the surface. Once you know that the Haitian kidnappers just want party money, you will be miles better prepared.
  • Splitting the difference is wearing one black and one brown shoe, so don’t compromise. Meeting halfway often leads to bad deals for both sides.
  • Approaching deadlines entice people to rush the negotiating process and do impulsive things that are against their best interests.
  • The F-word—“Fair”—is an emotional term people usually exploit to put the other side on the defensive and gain concessions. When your counterpart drops the F-bomb, don’t get suckered into a concession. Instead, ask them to explain how you’re mistreating them.
  • You can bend your counterpart’s reality by anchoring his starting point. Before you make an offer, emotionally anchor them by saying how bad it will be. When you get to numbers, set an extreme anchor to make your “real” offer seem reasonable, or use a range to seem less aggressive. The real value of anything depends on what vantage point you’re looking at it from.
  • People will take more risks to avoid a loss than to realize a gain. Make sure your counterpart sees that there is something to lose by inaction

Chapter 7: Create The Illusion Of Control

  • Instead of asking some closed-ended question with a single correct answer, he’d asked an open-ended, yet calibrated one that forced the other guy to pause and actually think about how to solve the problem. I thought to myself, This is perfect! It’s a natural and normal question, not a request for a fact. It’s a “how” question, and “how” engages because “how” asks for help.
  • If you can get the other side to drop their unbelief, you can slowly work them to your point of view on the back of their energy, just like the drug dealer’s question got the kidnapper to volunteer to do what the drug dealer wanted. You don’t directly persuade them to see your ideas. Instead, you ride them to your ideas. As the saying goes, the best way to ride a horse is in the direction in which it is going.
  • Calibrated questions avoid verbs or words like “can,” “is,” “are,” “do,” or “does.” These are closed-ended questions that can be answered with a simple “yes” or a “no.” Instead, they start with a list of words people know as reporter’s questions: “who,” “what,” “when,” “where,” “why,” and “how.” Those words inspire your counterpart to think and then speak expansively.
  • But let me cut the list even further: it’s best to start with “what,” “how,” and sometimes “why.” Nothing else. “Who,” “when,” and “where” will often just get your counterpart to share a fact without thinking. And “why” can backfire. Regardless of what language the word “why” is translated into, it’s accusatory. There are very rare moments when this is to your advantage.
  • The only time you can use “why” successfully is when the defensiveness that is created supports the change you are trying to get them to see. “Why would you ever change from the way you’ve always done things and try my approach?” is an example. “Why would your company ever change from your long-standing vendor and choose our company?” is another. As always, tone of voice, respectful and deferential, is critical.
  • Otherwise, treat “why” like a burner on a hot stove— don’t touch it.
  • Having just two words to start with might not seem like a lot of ammunition, but trust me, you can use “what” and “how” to calibrate nearly any question. “Does this look like something you would like?” can become “How does this look to you?” or “What about this works for you?” You can even ask, “What about this doesn’t work for you?” and you’ll probably trigger quite a bit of useful information from your counterpart.
  • Even something as harsh as “Why did you do it?” can be calibrated to “What caused you to do it?” which takes away the emotion and makes the question less accusatory
  • Here are some other great standbys that I use in almost every negotiation, depending on the situation:
    • What about this is important to you?
    • How can I help to make this better for us?
    • How would you like me to proceed?
    • What is it that brought us into this situation?
    • How can we solve this problem?
    • What’s the objective? / What are we trying to accomplish here?
    • How am I supposed to do that?
  • The implication of any well-designed calibrated question is that you want what the other guy wants but you need his intelligence to overcome the problem. This really appeals to very aggressive or egotistical counterparts
  • The basic issue here is that when people feel that they are not in control, they adopt what psychologists call a hostage mentality. That is, in moments of conflict they react to their lack of power by either becoming extremely defensive or lashing out
  • Who has control in a conversation, the guy listening or the guy talking? The listener, of course. That’s because the talker is revealing information while the listener, if he’s trained well, is directing the conversation toward his own goals. He’s harnessing the talker’s energy for his own ends

Lessons from chapter 7

  • Don't try to negotiate in a firefight. Wait for the environment to calm down
  • There is always a team on the other side. If you are not influencing those behind the table, you are vulnerable.
  • Avoid questions that can be answered with “Yes” or tiny pieces of information. These require little thought and inspire the human need for reciprocity; you will be expected to give something back.
  • Ask calibrated questions that start with the words “How” or “What.” By implicitly asking the other party for help, these questions will give your counterpart an illusion of control and will inspire them to speak at length, revealing important information.
  • Don’t ask questions that start with “Why” unless you want your counterpart to defend a goal that serves you. “Why” is always an accusation, in any language.
  • Calibrate your questions to point your counterpart toward solving your problem. This will encourage them to expend their energy on devising a solution.
  • Bite your tongue. Control your emotional responses during the negotiations.
  • When you are verbally assaulted, do not counterattack. Instead, disarm your counterpart by asking a calibrated question.
  • Don’t try to force your opponent to admit that you are right. Aggressive confrontation is the enemy of constructive negotiation.

Chapter 8: Guarantee Execution

  • "Yes" is nothing without "How". While an agreement is nice, a contract is better, and a signed check is best. You don’t get your profits with the agreement. They come upon implementation. Success isn’t the hostage-taker saying, “Yes, we have a deal”; success comes afterward, when the freed hostage says to your face, “Thank you.”
  • Calibrated “How” questions are a surefire way to keep negotiations going. They put the pressure on your counterpart to come up with answers, and to contemplate your problems when making their demands
  • The trick to “How” questions is that, correctly used, they are gentle and graceful ways to say “No” and guide your counterpart to develop a better solution—your solution. A gentle How/No invites collaboration and leaves your counterpart with a feeling of having been treated with respect.
  • Besides saying “No,” the other key benefit of asking “How?” is, quite literally, that it forces your counterpart to consider and explain how a deal will be implemented. A deal is nothing without good implementation. Poor implementation is the cancer that eats your profits
  • By making your counterparts articulate implementation in their own words, your carefully calibrated “How” questions will convince them that the final solution is their idea. And that’s crucial. People always make more effort to implement a solution when they think it’s theirs. That is simply human nature. That’s why negotiation is often called “the art of letting someone else have your way.”
  • There are two key questions you can ask to push your counterparts to think they are defining success their way:
    • “How will we know we’re on track?”
    • “How will we address things if we find we’re off track?”
    • When they answer, you summarize their answers until you get a “That’s right.” Then you’ll know they’ve bought in.

  • Be wary of two telling signs that your counterpart doesn’t believe the idea is theirs. As I’ve noted, when they say, “You’re right,” it’s often a good indicator they are not vested in what is being discussed. And when you push for implementation and they say, “I’ll try,” you should get a sinking feeling in your stomach. Because this really means, “I plan to fail.”
  • When you hear either of these, dive back in with calibrated “How” questions until they define the terms of successful implementation in their own voice. Follow up by summarizing what they have said to get a “That’s right.”
  • Let the other side feel victory. Let them think it was their idea. Subsume your ego. Remember: “Yes” is nothing without “How.” So keep asking “How?” And succeed.
  • When implementation happens by committee, the support of that committee is key. You always have to identify and unearth their motivations, even if you haven’t yet identified each individual on that committee. That can be easy as asking a few calibrated questions, like “How does this affect the rest of your team?” or “How on board are the people not on this call?” or simply “What do your colleagues see as their main challenges in this area?”
  • 📌

    It only takes one bit player to screw up a deal.

  • Truly effective negotiators are conscious of the verbal, paraverbal (how it’s said), and nonverbal communications that pervade negotiations and group dynamics. And they know how to employ those subtleties to their benefit. Even changing a single word when you present options—like using “not lose” instead of “keep”—can unconsciously influence the conscious choices your counterpart makes
  • The 7-38-55 percent rule. That is, only 7 percent of a message is based on the words while 38 percent comes from the tone of voice and 55 percent from the speaker’s body language and face
  • The Rule of Three. The Rule of Three is simply getting the other guy to agree to the same thing three times in the same conversation. It’s tripling the strength of whatever dynamic you’re trying to drill into at the moment. In doing so, it uncovers problems before they happen. It’s really hard to repeatedly lie or fake conviction.
  • The Pinocchio Effect. Most people offer obvious telltale signs when they’re lying. Not a growing nose, but close enough. In a study of the components of lying, Harvard Business School professor Deepak Malhotra and his coauthors found that, on average, liars use more words than truth tellers and use far more third-person pronouns. They start talking about him, her, it, one, they, and their rather than I, in order to put some distance between themselves and the lie
    • And they discovered that liars tend to speak in more complex sentences in an attempt to win over their suspicious counterparts. It’s what W. C. Fields meant when he talked about baffling someone with bullshit. The researchers dubbed this the Pinocchio Effect because, just like Pinocchio’s nose, the number of words grew along with the lie. People who are lying are, understandably, more worried about being believed, so they work harder—too hard, as it were—at being believable
  • The use of pronouns by a counterpart can also help give you a feel for their actual importance in the decision and implementation chains on the other side of the table. The more in love they are with “I,” “me,” and “my” the less important they are
  • People always talk about remembering and using (but not overusing) your counterpart’s name in a negotiation. And that’s important. The reality though is people are often tired of being hammered with their own name. The slick salesman trying to drive them to “Yes” will hit them with it over and over. Instead, take a different tack and use your own name. That’s how I get the Chris discount.
  • We’ve found that you can usually express “No” four times before actually saying the word.
    • The first step in the “No” series is the old standby: “How am I supposed to do that?” You have to deliver it in a deferential way, so it becomes a request for help. Properly delivered, it invites the other side to participate in your dilemma and solve it with a better offer.
    • After that, some version of “Your offer is very generous, I’m sorry, that just doesn’t work for me” is an elegant second way to say “No.” This well-tested response avoids making a counteroffer, and the use of “generous” nurtures your counterpart to live up to the word. The “I’m sorry” also softens the “No” and builds empathy. (You can ignore the so-called negotiating experts who say apologies are always signs of weakness.)
    • Then you can use something like “I’m sorry but I’m afraid I just can’t do that.” It’s a little more direct, and the “can’t do that” does great double duty. By expressing an inability to perform, it can trigger the other side’s empathy toward you.
    • “I’m sorry, no” is a slightly more succinct version for the fourth “No.” If delivered gently, it barely sounds negative at all.
    • If you have to go further, of course, “No” is the last and most direct way. Verbally, it should be delivered with a downward inflection and a tone of regard; it’s not meant to be “NO!”
    • Examples
    • They crafted their first “No” message:

      The price you offered is very fair, and I certainly wish that I could afford it. Bruno has worked very hard for this business, and he deserves to be compensated appropriately. I am very sorry, but wish you the best of luck.

      Notice how they made no counteroffer and said “No” without using the word? Joaquin was shocked when the following day he received an email from the advisor lowering the price to €28,346. Joaquin and Jesus then crafted their second gentle “No”:

      Thank you for your offer. You were generous to reduce the price, which I greatly appreciate. I really wish that I could pay you this amount, but I am sincere in that I cannot afford this amount at this time. As you know, I am in the middle of a divorce and I just cannot come up with that type of money. Again, I wish you the best of luck.

      The next day Joaquin received a one-line email from the advisor dropping the price to €25,000. Joaquin wanted to take it but Jesus told him that he had some “No” steps to go. Joaquin fought him, but in the end he relented. There’s a critical lesson there: The art of closing a deal is staying focused to the very end. There are crucial points at the finale when you must draw on your mental discipline. Don’t think about what time the last flight leaves, or what it would be like to get home early and play golf. Do not let your mind wander. Remain focused. They wrote:

      Thank you again for the generous offer. You have really come down on the price and I have tried very hard to come up with that amount. Unfortunately, no one is willing to lend me the money, not even my mother. I have tried various avenues but cannot come up with the funding. In the end, I can offer you €23,567, although I can only pay €15,321.37 up front. I could pay you the remainder over a one-year period, but that is really the most I can do. I wish you the best in your decision.

      Brilliant use of specific numbers, and what an empathy-building way to say “No” without using the word! And it worked. Within one hour, the advisor responded to accept.

Chapter 8 lessons

  • “Yes” is nothing without “How.” Asking “How,” knowing “How,” and defining “How” are all part of the effective negotiator’s arsenal. He would be unarmed without them.
  • Ask calibrated “How” questions, and ask them again and again
    • Asking “How” keeps your counterparts engaged but off balance. Answering the questions will give them the illusion of control. It will also lead them to contemplate your problems when making their demands.
  • Ask calibrated "How" questions to define success. E.g. “How will we know we’re on track?”, “How will we address things if we find we’re off track?”
  • Use “How” questions to shape the negotiating environment. Use “How can I do that?” as a gentle version of “No.”
  • Don’t just pay attention to the people you’re negotiating with directly; always identify the motivations of the players “behind the table.”
  • When someone’s tone of voice or body language does not align with the meaning of the words they say, use labels to discover the source of the incongruence.
  • When the "Yes" was achieved, confirm the counterpart's agreement at least three times.
  • Be wary of "You're right" and "I'll try". Usually, they are signs of failure. When you hear that, dive back in with calibrated “How” questions until they define the terms of successful implementation in their own voice. Follow up by summarizing what they have said to get a “That’s right.”
  • Pay attention to the use of pronouns. "I", "me" — a person is not an authority. "We", "they", "them" — more likely you're dealing with the decision maker.
  • You can say "No" four times before saying the word
  • When lying, most people talk about him, her, it, one, they, and their rather than I, in order to put some distance between themselves and the lie
  • Use your own name to make yourself a real person to the other side and even get your own personal discount
  • Stay focused to the very end. Do not let your mind wander

Chapter 9: Bargain Hard

  • Most negotiations hit that inevitable point where the slightly loose and informal interplay between two people turns to confrontation and the proverbial “brass tacks.” You know the moment: you’ve mirrored and labeled your way to a degree of rapport; an accusation audit has cleared any lingering mental or emotional obstacles, and you’ve identified and summarized the interests and positions at stake, eliciting a “That’s right,” and . . . Now it’s time to bargain.
  • No part of a negotiation induces more anxiety and unfocused aggression than bargaining, which is why it’s the part that is more often fumbled and mishandled than any other. It’s simply not a comfortable dynamic for most people. Even when we have the best-laid plans, a lot of us wimp out when we get to the moment of exchanging prices

Know your style

  • Negotiation style is a crucial variable in bargaining. If you don’t know what instinct will tell you or the other side to do in various circumstances, you’ll have massive trouble gaming out effective strategies and tactics. You and your counterpart have habits of mind and behavior, and once you identify them you can leverage them in a strategic manner
  • People fall into three broad categories. Some people are Accommodators; others—like me—are basically Assertive; and the rest are data-loving Analysts
  • Hollywood negotiation scenes suggest that an Assertive style is required for effective bargaining, but each of the styles can be effective. And to truly be effective you need elements from all three.
  • Your personal negotiating style is not a straitjacket. No one is exclusively one style. Most of us have the capacity to throttle up our nondominant styles should the situation call for it. But there is one basic truth about a successful bargaining style: To be good, you have to learn to be yourself at the bargaining table. To be great you have to add to your strengths, not replace them.
Analyst

Analysts are methodical and diligent. They are not in a big rush. Instead, they believe that as long as they are working toward the best result in a thorough and systematic way, time is of little consequence. Their self-image is linked to minimizing mistakes. Their motto: As much time as it takes to get it right. Classic analysts prefer to work on their own and rarely deviate from their goals. They rarely show emotion, and they often use what is very close to the FM DJ Voice I talked about in Chapter 3, slow and measured with a downward inflection. However, Analysts often speak in a way that is distant and cold instead of soothing. This puts people off without them knowing it and actually limits them from putting their counterpart at ease and opening them up. Analysts pride themselves on not missing any details in their extensive preparation. They will research for two weeks to get data they might have gotten in fifteen minutes at the negotiating table, just to keep from being surprised. Analysts hate surprises. They are reserved problem solvers, and information aggregators, and are hypersensitive to reciprocity. They will give you a piece, but if they don’t get a piece in return within a certain period of time, they lose trust and will disengage. This can often seem to come out of nowhere, but remember, since they like working on things alone the fact that they are talking to you at all is, from their perspective, a concession. They will often view concessions by their counterpart as a new piece of information to be taken back and evaluated. Don’t expect immediate counterproposals from them. People like this are skeptical by nature. So asking too many questions to start is a bad idea, because they’re not going to want to answer until they understand all the implications. With them, it’s vital to be prepared. Use clear data to drive your reason; don’t ad-lib; use data comparisons to disagree and focus on the facts; warn them of issues early; and avoid surprises. Silence to them is an opportunity to think. They’re not mad at you and they’re not trying to give you a chance to talk more. If you feel they don’t see things the way you do, give them a chance to think first. Apologies have little value to them since they see the negotiation and their relationship with you as a person largely as separate things. They respond fairly well in the moment to labels. They are not quick to answer calibrated questions, or closed-ended questions when the answer is “Yes.” They may need a few days to respond. If you’re an analyst you should be worried about cutting yourself off from an essential source of data, your counterpart. The single biggest thing you can do is to smile when you speak. People will be more forthcoming with information to you as a result. Smiling can also become a habit that makes it easy for you to mask any moments you’ve been caught off guard.

  • Time = preparation;
  • Responds fairly well to labels
  • Not quick to answer calibrated questions
  • If you are the analyst, smile when you speak.
Accommodator

The most important thing to this type of negotiator is the time spent building the relationship. Accommodators think as long as there is a free-flowing continuous exchange of information time is being well spent. As long as they’re communicating, they’re happy. Their goal is to be on great terms with their counterpart. They love the win-win. Of the three types, they are most likely to build great rapport without actually accomplishing anything. Accommodators want to remain friends with their counterpart even if they can’t reach an agreement. They are very easy to talk to, extremely friendly, and have pleasant voices. They will yield a concession to appease or acquiesce and hope the other side reciprocates. If your counterparts are sociable, peace-seeking, optimistic, distractible, and poor time managers, they’re probably Accommodators. If they’re your counterpart, be sociable and friendly. Listen to them talk about their ideas and use calibrated questions focused specifically on implementation to nudge them along and find ways to translate their talk into action. Due to their tendency to be the first to activate the reciprocity cycle, they may have agreed to give you something they can’t actually deliver. Their approach to preparation can be lacking as they are much more focused on the person behind the table. They want to get to know you. They have a tremendous passion for the spirit of negotiation and what it takes not only to manage emotions but also to satisfy them. While it is very easy to disagree with an Accommodator, because they want nothing more that to hear what you have to say, uncovering their objections can be difficult. They will have identified potential problem areas beforehand and will leave those areas unaddressed out of fear of the conflict they may cause. If you have identified yourself as an Accommodator, stick to your ability to be very likable, but do not sacrifice your objections. Not only do the other two types need to hear your point of view; if you are dealing with another Accommodator they will welcome it. Also be conscious of excess chitchat: the other two types have no use for it, and if you’re sitting across the table from someone like yourself you will be prone to interactions where nothing gets done.

  • Time = relationship
  • Difficult to get the objections from because of the fear to damage the relationship
Assertive

The Assertive type believes time is money; every wasted minute is a wasted dollar. Their self-image is linked to how many things they can get accomplished in a period of time. For them, getting the solution perfect isn’t as important as getting it done. Assertives are fiery people who love winning above all else, often at the expense of others. Their colleagues and counterparts never question where they stand because they are always direct and candid. They have an aggressive communication style and they don’t worry about future interactions. Their view of business relationships is based on respect, nothing more and nothing less. Most of all, the Assertive wants to be heard. And not only do they want to be heard, but they don’t actually have the ability to listen to you until they know that you’ve heard them. They focus on their own goals rather than people. And they tell rather than ask. When you’re dealing with Assertive types, it’s best to focus on what they have to say, because once they are convinced you understand them, then and only then will they listen for your point of view. To an Assertive, every silence is an opportunity to speak more. Mirrors are a wonderful tool with this type. So are calibrated questions, labels, and summaries. The most important thing to get from an Assertive will be a “that’s right” that may come in the form of a “that’s it exactly” or “you hit it on the head.” When it comes to reciprocity, this type is of the “give an inch/take a mile” mentality. They will have figured they deserve whatever you have given them so they will be oblivious to expectations of owing something in return. They will actually simply be looking for the opportunity to receive more. If they have given some kind of concession, they are surely counting the seconds until they get something in return. If you are an Assertive, be particularly conscious of your tone. You will not intend to be overly harsh but you will often come off that way. Intentionally soften your tone and work to make it more pleasant. Use calibrated questions and labels with your counterpart since that will also make you more approachable and increase the chances for collaboration.

  • Time = money
  • If you're dealing with assertive, focus on what they have to say. Mirrors work wonders. So are calibrated questions, labels, and summaries. Aim to get to "that's right"
  • If you are assertive, be conscious of your tone. Soften your tone to make it more pleasant. Use calibrated questions and labels to make yourself more approachable

Cheat Sheet 👇

3 Types of Negotiators.pdf2748.1KB

Anger and strategic umbrage

  • Marwan Sinaceur of INSEAD and Stanford University’s Larissa Tiedens found that expressions of anger increase a negotiator’s advantage and final take. Anger shows passion and conviction that can help sway the other side to accept less. However, by heightening your counterpart’s sensitivity to danger and fear, your anger reduces the resources they have for other cognitive activity, setting them up to make bad concessions that will likely lead to implementation problems, thus reducing your gains.
  • Also beware: researchers have also found that disingenuous expressions of unfelt anger—you know, faking it—backfire, leading to intractable demands and destroying trust. For anger to be effective, it has to be real, the key for it is to be under control because anger also reduces our cognitive ability
  • When someone puts out a ridiculous offer, one that really pisses you off, take a deep breath, allow little anger, and channel it—at the proposal, not the person—and say, “I don’t see how that would ever work.”
  • Such well-timed offense-taking—known as “strategic umbrage”—can wake your counterpart to the problem. In studies by Columbia University academics Daniel Ames and Abbie Wazlawek, people on the receiving end of strategic umbrage were more likely to rate themselves as overassertive, even when the counterpart didn’t think so.
  • The real lesson here is being aware of how this might be used on you. Please don’t allow yourself to fall victim to “strategic umbrage.”

"Why" questions

  • Across our planet and around the universe, “Why?” makes people defensive
  • The idea is to employ the defensiveness the question triggers to get your counterpart to defend your position.
  • I know it sounds weird, but it works. The basic format goes like this: When you want to flip a dubious counterpart to your side, ask them, “Why would you do that?” but in a way that the “that” favors you. Let me explain. If you are working to lure a client away from a competitor, you might say, “Why would you ever do business with me? Why would you ever change from your existing supplier? They’re great!”
  • In these questions, the “Why?” coaxes your counterpart into working for you.

"I" messages

  • Using the first-person singular pronoun is another great way to set a boundary without escalating into confrontation.
  • When you say, “I’m sorry, that doesn’t work for me,” the word “I” strategically focuses your counterpart’s attention onto you long enough for you to make a point.
  • The traditional “I” message is to use “I” to hit the pause button and step out of a bad dynamic. When you want to counteract unproductive statements from your counterpart, you can say, “I feel ___ when you ___ because ___,” and that demands a time-out from the other person.
  • But be careful with the big “I”: You have to be mindful not to use a tone that is aggressive or creates an argument. It’s got to be cool and level

Ackerman model

  • The Ackerman model is an offer-counteroffer method, at least on the surface. But it is a very effective system for beating the usual lackluster bargaining dynamic, which has the predictable result of meeting in the middle.
  • The systematized and easy-to-remember process has only four steps:
    • Set your target price (your goal).
    • Set your first offer at 65 percent of your target price.
    • Calculate three raises of decreasing increments (to 85, 95, and 100 percent).
    • Use lots of empathy and different ways of saying “No” to get the other side to counter before you increase your offer.
    • When calculating the final amount, use precise, nonround numbers like, say, $37,893 rather than $38,000. It gives the number credibility and weight.
    • On your final number, throw in a non-monetary item (that they probably don’t want) to show you’re at your limit.
  • First, the original offer of 65 percent of your target price will set an extreme anchor, a big slap in the face that might bring your counterpart right to their price limit. The shock of an extreme anchor will induce a fight-or-flight reaction in all but the most experienced negotiators, limiting their cognitive abilities and pushing them into rash action.
  • Now look at the progressive offer increases to 85, 95, and 100 percent of the target price. You’re going to drop these in sparingly: after the counterpart has made another offer on their end, and after you’ve thrown out a few calibrated questions to see if you can bait them into bidding against themselves

  • Notice that you can’t buy anything for $2, but you can buy a million things for $1.99. How does a cent change anything? It doesn’t. But it makes a difference every time. We just like $1.99 more than $2.00 even if we know it’s a trick

Chapter 9 lessons

  • Be yourself at the bargaining table and add to your strengths
    • Your personal negotiating style is not a straitjacket. No one is exclusively one style. Most of us have the capacity to throttle up our nondominant styles should the situation call for it. But there is one basic truth about a successful bargaining style: To be good, you have to learn to be yourself at the bargaining table. To be great you have to add to your strengths, not replace them.
  • Don’t treat others the way you want to be treated; treat them the way they need to be treated
  • Identify your counterpart’s negotiating style. Once you know whether they are Accommodator, Assertive, or Analyst, you’ll know the correct way to approach them
  • Prepare, prepare, prepare. Design an ambitious but legitimate goal and then game out the labels, calibrated questions, and responses you’ll use to get there.
    • When the pressure is on, you don’t rise to the occasion; you fall to your highest level of preparation. So design an ambitious but legitimate goal and then game out the labels, calibrated questions, and responses you’ll use to get there. That way, once you’re at the bargaining table, you won’t have to wing it
  • Get ready to take a punch — ridiculously low offer, an extreme anchor
    • Get ready to take a punch. Kick-ass negotiators usually lead with an extreme anchor to knock you off your game. If you’re not ready, you’ll flee to your maximum without a fight. So prepare your dodging tactics to avoid getting sucked into the compromise trap
    • “How am I supposed to accept that?”
    • “What are we trying to accomplish here?”
    • “Let’s put price off to the side for a moment and talk about what would make this a good deal.”
    • “What else would you be able to offer to make that a good price for me?”
  • The guy across the table is not the problem; the situation is. Set boundaries, and learn to take a punch or punch back, without anger.
  • If the other side pushes you to go first, instead of naming a price, allude to an incredibly high number that someone else might charge
    • No matter what happens, the point here is to sponge up information from your counterpart. Letting your counterpart anchor first will give you a tremendous feel for him. All you need to learn is how to take the first punch.
    • “Well, if you go to Harvard Business School, they’re going to charge you $2,500 a day per student.”
  • Prepare an Ackerman plan: 65, 85, 95, 100 percent offers and calibrated questions. Decrease raises in steps and end on non-round numbers.
    • Before you head into the weeds of bargaining, you’ll need a plan of extreme anchor, calibrated questions, and well-defined offers. Remember: 65, 85, 95, 100 percent. Decreasing raises and ending on nonround numbers will get your counterpart to believe that he’s squeezing you for all you’re worth when you’re really getting to the number you want
  • Don't be needy. Have the ready-to-walk mindset

Chapter 10: Find The Black Swan

  • Negotiation breakthroughs—when the game shifts inalterably in your favor—are created by those who can identify and utilize Black Swans.
  • Black Swan theory tells us that things happen that were previously thought to be impossible—or never thought of at all. This is not the same as saying that sometimes things happen against one-in-a-million odds, but rather that things never imagined do come to pass
  • The idea of the Black Swan was popularized by risk analyst Nassim Nicholas Taleb in his bestselling books Fooled by Randomness (2001) and The Black Swan (2007), but the term goes back much further. Until the seventeenth century, people could only imagine white swans because all swans ever seen had possessed white feathers. In seventeenth-century London it was common to refer to impossible things as “Black Swans.”
    • But then the Dutch explorer Willem de Vlamingh went to western Australia in 1697—and saw a black swan. Suddenly the unthinkable and unthought was real. People had always predicted that the next swan they saw would be white, but the discovery of black swans shattered this worldview.
  • In every negotiating session, there are different kinds of information. There are those things we know, like our counterpart’s name and their offer and our experiences from other negotiations. Those are known knowns. There are those things we are certain that exist but we don’t know, like the possibility that the other side might get sick and leave us with another counterpart. Those are known unknowns and they are like poker wild cards; you know they’re out there but you don’t know who has them. But most important are those things we don’t know that we don’t know, pieces of information we’ve never imagined but that would be game-changing if uncovered. Maybe our counterpart wants the deal to fail because he’s leaving for a competitor. These unknown unknowns are Black Swans.
  • We must let what we know—our known knowns—guide us but not blind us to what we do not know; we must remain flexible and adaptable to any situation; we must always retain a beginner’s mind; and we must never overvalue our experience or undervalue the informational and emotional realities served up moment by moment in whatever situation we face
  • Finding and acting on Black Swans mandates a shift in your mindset. It takes negotiation from being a onedimensional move-countermove game of checkers to a three-dimensional game that’s more emotional, adaptive, intuitive . . . and truly effective
  • To uncover these unknowns, we must interrogate our world, must put out a call, and intensely listen to the response. Ask lots of questions. Read nonverbal clues and always voice your observations with your counterpart
  • Negotiations will always suffer from limited predictability. Your counterpart might tell you, “It’s a lovely plot of land,” without mentioning that it is also a Superfund site. They’ll say, “Are the neighbors noisy? Well, everyone makes a bit of noise, don’t they?” when the actual fact is that a heavy metal band practices there nightly.

3 types of leverage

  • Leverage is the ability to inflict loss and withhold gain. Where does your counterpart want to gain and what do they fear losing? Discover these pieces of information, we are told, and you’ll build leverage over the other side’s perceptions, actions, and decisions
  • If they’re talking to you, you have leverage. Who has leverage in a kidnapping? The kidnapper or the victim’s family? Most people think the kidnapper has all the leverage. Sure, the kidnapper has something you love, but you have something they lust for. Which is more powerful? Moreover, how many buyers do the kidnappers have for the commodity they are trying to sell? What business is successful if there’s only one buyer?
  1. Positive leverage
  2. Positive leverage is quite simply your ability as a negotiator to provide—or withhold—things that your counterpart wants. Whenever the other side says, “I want . . .” as in, “I want to buy your car,” you have positive leverage.

    When they say that, you have power: you can make their desire come true; you can withhold it and thereby inflict pain; or you can use their desire to get a better deal with another party

    Positive leverage should improve your psychology during negotiation. You’ve gone from a situation where you want something from the investor to a situation where you both want something from each other.

    Once you have it, you can then identify other things your opponent wants. Maybe he wants to buy your firm over time. Help him do that, if he’ll increase the price. Maybe his offer is all the money he has. Help him get what he wants—your business—by saying you can only sell him 75 percent for his offer

  3. Negative leverage
  4. Negative leverage is what most civilians picture when they hear the word “leverage.” It’s a negotiator’s ability to make his counterpart suffer. And it is based on threats: you have negative leverage if you can tell your counterpart, “If you don’t fulfill your commitment/pay your bill/etc., I will destroy your reputation.”

    If you shove your negative leverage down your counterpart’s throat, it might be perceived as you taking away their autonomy. People will often sooner die than give up their autonomy. They’ll at least act irrationally and shut off the negotiation.

    A more subtle technique is to label your negative leverage and thereby make it clear without attacking. Sentences like “It seems like you strongly value the fact that you’ve always paid on time” or “It seems like you don’t care what position you are leaving me in” can really open up the negotiation process

  5. Normative leverage
  6. Every person has a set of rules and a moral framework.

    Normative leverage is using the other party’s norms and standards to advance your position. If you can show inconsistencies between their beliefs and their actions, you have normative leverage. No one likes to look like a hypocrite.

    For example, if your counterpart lets slip that they generally pay a certain multiple of cash flow when they buy a company, you can frame your desired price in a way that reflects that valuation.

  • Know their religion. In any negotiation, but especially in a tense one like this, it’s not how well you speak but how well you listen that determines your success. Understanding the “other” is a precondition to be able to speak persuasively and develop options that resonate for them. There is the visible negotiation and then all the things that are hidden under the surface (the secret negotiation space wherein the Black Swans dwell).
  • Research studies have shown that people respond favorably to requests made in a reasonable tone of voice and followed with a “because” reason.

It's not crazy, it's a clue

  • It’s not human nature to embrace the unknown. It scares us. When we are confronted by it, we ignore it, we run away, or we label it in ways that allow us to dismiss it. In negotiations, that label most often takes the form of the statement, “They’re crazy!”
  • Mistake #1: They are ill-informed
  • Often the other side is acting on bad information, and when people have bad information they make bad choices

    People operating with incomplete information appear crazy to those who have different information. Your job, when faced with someone like this in a negotiation, is to discover what they do not know and supply that information.

  • Mistake #2: They are constrained
  • In any negotiation where your counterpart is acting wobbly, there exists a distinct possibility that they have things they can’t do but aren’t eager to reveal. Such constraints can make the sanest counterpart seem irrational. The other side might not be able to do something because of legal advice, or because of promises already made, or even to avoid setting a precedent.

    Or they may just not have the power to close the deal.

  • Mistake #3: They have other interests
  • Your counterpart will often reject offers for reasons that have nothing to do with their merits.

    A client may put off buying your product so that their calendar year closes before the invoice hits, increasing his chance for a promotion. Or an employee might quit in the middle of a career-making project, just before bonus season, because he or she has learned that colleagues are making more money. For that employee, fairness is as much an interest as money.

    Whatever the specifics of the situation, these people are not acting irrationally. They are simply complying with needs and desires that you don’t yet understand, what the world looks like to them based on their own set of rules. Your job is to bring these Black Swans to light.

Get face time

  • Black Swans are incredibly hard to uncover if you’re not literally at the table.
  • No matter how much research you do, there’s just some information that you are not going to find out unless you sit face-to-face.
  • Today, a lot of younger people do almost everything over email. It’s just how things are done. But it’s very difficult to find Black Swans with email for the simple reason that, even if you knock your counterpart off their moorings with great labels and calibrated questions, email gives them too much time to think and re-center themselves to avoid revealing too much.

Overcome your fear

  • People generally fear conflict, so they avoid useful arguments out of fear that the tone will escalate into personal attacks they cannot handle. People in close relationships often avoid making their own interests known and instead compromise across the board to avoid being perceived as greedy or self-interested. They fold, they grow bitter, and they grow apart. We’ve all heard of marriages that ended in divorce and the couple never fought
  • Except for a few naturals, everyone hates negotiation at first. Your hands sweat, your fight-or-flight kicks in (with a strong emphasis o n flight), and your thoughts trip drunkenly over themselves
  • But stop and think about that. Are we really afraid of the guy across the table? I can promise you that, with very few exceptions, he’s not going to reach across and slug you.
  • No, our sweaty palms are just an expression of physiological fear, a few trigger-happy neurons firing because of something more base: our innate human desire to get along with other members of the tribe. It’s not the guy across the table who scares us: it’s conflict itself
  • If this book accomplishes only one thing, I hope it gets you over that fear of conflict and encourages you to navigate it with empathy. If you’re going to be great at anything—a great negotiator, a great manager, a great husband, a great wife—you’re going to have to do that. You’re going to have to ignore that little genie who’s telling you to give up, to just get along—as well as that other genie who’s telling you to lash out and yell.
  • Pushing hard for what you believe is not selfish. It is not bullying. It is not just helping you. Your amygdala, the part of the brain that processes fear, will try to convince you to give up, to flee, because the other guy is right, or you’re being cruel. With the style of negotiation taught in the book—an information-obsessed, empathic search for the best possible deal—you are trying to uncover value, period. Not to strong-arm or to humiliate.
  • Whether it’s in the office or around the family dinner table, don’t avoid honest, clear conflict. It will get you the best car price, the higher salary, and the largest donation. It will also save your marriage, your friendship, and your family.
  • One can only be an exceptional negotiator, and a great person, by both listening and speaking clearly and empathetically; by treating counterparts—and oneself—with dignity and respect; and most of all by being honest about what one wants and what one can—and cannot—do. Every negotiation, every conversation, every moment of life, is a series of small conflicts that, managed well, can rise to creative beauty. Embrace them.

Lessons from chapter 10

  • Let what you know—your known knowns —guide you but not blind you. Every case is new, so remain flexible and adaptable. Remember the Griffin bank crisis: no hostagetaker had killed a hostage on deadline, until he did.
  • Don’t look to verify what you expect. If you do, that’s what you’ll find
  • Interrogate your world
  • There’s always leverage: as an essentially emotional concept, it can be manufactured whether it exists or not
  • Work to understand the other side’s “religion.” Digging into worldviews inherently implies moving beyond the negotiating table and into the life, emotional and otherwise, of your counterpart. That’s where Black Swans live.
  • Exploit the similarity principle. People are more apt to concede to someone they share a cultural similarity with, so dig for what makes them tick and show that you share common ground.
  • When someone seems irrational or crazy, they most likely aren’t. Faced with this situation, search for constraints, hidden desires, and bad information.
  • Get face time with your counterpart. Ten minutes of face time often reveals more than days of research. Pay special attention to your counterpart’s verbal and nonverbal communication at unguarded moments—at the beginning and the end of the session or when someone says something out of line
  • Review everything you hear. You will not hear everything the first time, so double-check. Compare notes with your team members. You will often discover new information that will help you advance the negotiation.
  • Use backup listeners whose only job is to listen between the lines. They will hear things you miss
  • Always use "because" when making a request
  • Overcome your fear of conflict and navigate it with empathy
  • Don't avoid honest, clear conflict
  • Black Swans are leverage multipliers. Remember the three types of leverage: positive (the ability to give someone what they want); negative (the ability to hurt someone); and normative (using your counterpart’s norms to bring them around).