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Breakthrough Business Negotiation

Breakthrough Business Negotiation

Breakthrough Business Negotiation

A Toolbox for Managers

by Michael Watkins

Michael Watkins, associate professor of business administration at Harvard Business School, lays out the major steps involved in any negotiation, including diagnosing a situation, shaping the structuring, managing the process and assessing the results. He also offers key insights into building coalitions, managing conflicts and negotiating crises.

What You'll Learn

  • The key tasks of a negotiator. Negotiators must diagnose the situation, shape the structure of the proceedings, manage the negotiation process, and assess the results afterward.
  • Setting the agenda for negotiations. It's crucial to have an impact early, when the agenda for what will and won't be negotiated is being set. This establishes boundaries before momentum builds in the wrong direction or irreversible commitments are made.
  • How to frame the negotiation. Framing is accomplished by using argument, analogy and metaphor to define the problem to be solved and the set of potential solutions. Skillful framing reaches the target audience by evoking mental images and emotional reactions that influence their behavior.
  • Managing the negotiation process. Managing the process is a major element of breakthrough negotiating. Whoever controls the process can powerfully influence the substance and results of negotiations.
  • Building coalitions for success. To form effective coalitions, you must identify the groups from which you must receive support, then convince them to work on your behalf to help your side win.
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