How to Break Deadlocks and Resolve Ugly Conflicts (Without Money or Muscle)

Some negotiations are easy. Others are more difficult. And then there are situations that seem completely hopeless. Conflict is escalating, people are getting aggressive and no one is willing to back down. And to top it off, you have little power or other resources to work with. Harvard professor and negotiation adviser Deepak Malhotra shows how to defuse even the most potentially explosive situations and to find success when things seem impossible. Malhotra identifies three broad approaches for breaking deadlocks and resolving conflicts, and draws out scores of actionable lessons. He shows how his principles and tactics can be applied in everyday life, whether you are making corporate deals, negotiating job offers or resolving business disputes. As Malhotra reminds us, regardless of the context or which issues are on the table, negotiation is always, fundamentally, about human interaction. No matter how high the stakes or how protracted the dispute, the object of negotiation is to engage with other human beings in a way that leads to better understandings and agreements. The principles and strategies in this book will help you do this more effectively in every situation.

In this summary, you will learn:
• Three crucial levers for successful negotiation.
• Why and how to frame, or make sense of, negotiations early.
• Why the process of negotiations is just as important as the substance.
• How learning to empathize will increase your chances of success.

Check out the summary here.

Review: Never Split the Difference by Chris Voss

NeverSplitTheDifference_LgNever Split the Difference by Chris Voss

Never Split the Difference, a new book on negotiation, presents an alternative to Getting to Yes, the classic text by Roger Fisher and William Ury of Harvard. For author Chris Voss, the use of rational tools and techniques is not the most effective approach for negotiations. Instead, the key to success, especially in very dangerous negotiations, is tactical empathy, which he describes as “emotional intelligence on steroids.”

As reflected in the title of his book, Voss, the former lead international kidnapping negotiator for the FBI, did not develop his theories on negotiation in the halls of academia. An education that began as a beat cop on the mean streets of Kansas City continued as he joined the FBI and eventually traveled the world as the agency’s chief negotiator in the most dangerous situations. Somewhat surprisingly, one of the most valuable lessons he learned was not in a jungle negotiating with ruthless terrorists, but in the streets of Pittsburgh.

A drug dealer had kidnapped the girlfriend of another drug dealer. As Voss listened to the tapes of the two drug dealers talking, he heard the aggrieved dealer ask the kidnapper, “Hey, dog, how do I know she’s alright?” The kidnapper paused and then said, “Well, I’ll put her on the phone.”

Already an experienced negotiator, Voss recognized the power of that question. It was the prototype of what he would eventually call the “calibrated question,” a highly impactful tool because it gives the other side a sense of control even if they are doing what you want them to do. If the drug dealer had said, “Put her on the phone!” the other dealer would either have refused — because he didn’t want be controlled — or demanded
something in return. When responding to the question, “How do I know she’s alright,” the kidnapper feels in control because he is making the decision to put the hostage on the phone.

Calibrated questions reflect the philosophy of emotional intelligence on steroids. Never Split the Difference is filled with compelling, often harrowing stories that further illustrate the empathy-based techniques and approaches that Voss advocates.

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Register Today: How to Untangle Life’s Toughest Conflicts

Join us for our next Soundview Live webinar!

Webinar: How to Negotiate with the Non Negotiable

How to Untangle Life’s Toughest Conflicts
PRESENTER: Daniel Shapiro
DATE: Wednesday, April 20th
TIME: 12PM EST

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Register today!
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Find out how to successfully resolve your most emotionally charged conflicts with a groundbreaking, practical method to reconcile your most contentious relationships and untangle your toughest conflicts.

In this Soundview Live webinar, How to Untangle Life’s Toughest Conflicts, author Daniel Shapiro offers a powerful way out, drawing on his pioneering research and global fieldwork in consulting for everyone from heads of state to business leaders, embattled marital couples to families in crisis.

You will learn how to:

  • Successfully negotiate and resolve life’s most emotionally charged conflicts.
  • Reconcile your most contentious relationships.
  • Deal with conflicts that threaten your identity and trigger a division mindset that pits you against the other side.
  • Improve your professional and personal relationships.

Become a Soundview subscriber to enjoy all of our webinars for FREE! Click here for more info.

New Soundview Review Strengthens Your Negotiating Power

The idea of negotiation is polarizing to many people. There are some individuals for whom the idea of sitting down at a bargaining table produces sweaty palms and heart palpitations. Others view negotiation as the opportunity to flex some muscle and crush an opponent. In Getting More: How to Negotiate to Achieve Your Goals in the Real World, a book recently reviewed by Soundview Executive Book Summaries, author Stuart Diamond attempts to bring negotiation off the battlefield and into more friendly confines.

One of the key phrases that propels Diamond’s book is “If you come to a negotiation expecting a war, you will get one.” Also, Diamond points out, you will get less from the negotiation. This notion moves negotiation into the realm of a collaborative endeavor where both parties attempt to reach a mutually beneficial solution. There are no victors or vanquished in Diamond’s world. The book contains some memorable stories of successful, positive negotiations. One of the most impressive is Diamond’s own foray into the jungles of Bolivia. He successfully negotiated with native farmers to forgo planting and harvesting the coca plant (used in the production of cocaine) and instead replace it with bananas. Diamond crossed cultural, economic and potentially life-threatening lines to undertake this negotiation. It’s an impressive feat that fits perfectly into Diamond’s book.

If you’re interested in learning more about Getting More, you can visit Soundview’s Web site, Summary.com, to read a FREE review of this and hundreds of other top business titles. You can also keep up with all of the latest business books by subscribing to Soundview’s FREE e-newsletter BizBook Review of the Week.

Executive Edge on Negotiating Strength

As one Soundview staffer put it the other day, “2011 is officially the Year of the Protest.” It does seem as though every day brings more and more headlines of people gathering together in an attempt to effect change. Whether the reasons are economic, political or religious in nature, protests of all sorts have been greatly aided by social technology. The use of mass collaboration has enabled people to organize, assemble and solidify their efforts in a way that the Founding Fathers or, more recently, Baby Boomers could never have imagined.

However, in many situations, real change is decided between smaller groups of individuals. These are instances where the ability to be a strong negotiator is an essential skill. The business applications of negotiation can make a significant difference in a person’s career as well as his or her ability to garner more and better opportunities for his or her company. What are some of the most important aspects of strong negotiation?

Concentrated Knowledge Corporation (the parent company of Soundview Executive Book Summaries) is exploring some of these ideas right now in its new online training publication CKC’s Executive Edge. The latest edition shows you how to negotiate from a position of strength. It’s full of ideas from thought-leaders on the subject and includes skill-building tips that will help you the next time you’re seated at the bargaining table.

If you haven’t seen Executive Edge™ yet, you’ve got to check it out. Unlike a lot of other training tools for executives that try to cover a dozen subjects at a time, Executive Edge™ focuses on one skill per issue. That means you get comprehensive coverage of a skill, enabling you to learn and retain more information.

Visit Soundview’s Web site Summary.com or click here to learn more about how you can strengthen your negotiating skills with Executive Edge.