Monday, August 08, 2005

Hramblings: Examples of win-lose negotiation

In a recent Christian Science Monitor op-ed regarding haggling, I couldn't help but notice that both the son and the father were engaging in win-lose negotiations. The father was successful because he used intimidation.

A more successful approach for father and son would be to look at bargaining as an opportunity have both party's needs met, not just one, by building a relationship with the other person and trying to give each what they want. Sometimes it is just to be heard and to know that you value the item regardless of the price settled on.

In the case of the canoe, the son made the offer sight unseen. Perhaps the seller wanted the opportunity to tell the story of the canoe and adventures it carried him on. As for the sunglass vendor in Spain. The son used a lowball price that was insulting. The sunglasses were 200 pesetas, the vendor's pride was worth another 100.

Principled negotiations are built on love, trust and the hope for a long term relationship. I suspect the author's results will improve if this is kept in mind.


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