09 Mar How to negotiate with anyone
I was wrong.
A couple of years ago, I wrote an article called, “Never Negotiate with a Bully.” I thought the whole thing was clever, which should inspire another article, “Never fall in love with my own ideas.”
The stories and premise of the original article remain sound. But words here matter. And I now know when dealing with bullies, our ONLY option is to negotiate.
And we need really good tools.
On that note, I’ve been recommending the book Never Split the Difference by Chris Voss to anyone who will listen.
I LOVE this book.
Because Chris Voss wrote it based on his experience leading hostage negotiation for the FBI. In other words, how do we deal with unreasonable people in volatile situations?
While we’re probably not negotiating the release of hostages, isn’t that any day at work? The stakes might not be as high, but in any heated meeting, we can still feel like we’re being held captive.
The truth is, of course, we’re all a little unreasonable. Acknowledging that makes a huge difference. And negotiating with that knowledge is much easier with Voss’ tools. A LOT easier. Like a lot, a lot.
When was the last time you had fun even thinking about negotiating? Yet Voss frames negotiation as a collaboration. We could definitely use more of that. And most of us could use some new tactics for dealing with unreasonable people. Including ourselves.
No, I don’t know Mr. Voss. But I’m using the tools. And I’ve updated the article because while we can’t reason with a bully, we can negotiate with one.
So let me know when you read Chris Voss’ book.
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Related post: Never reason with a bully
I help people re-wire and re-think. Even in unreasonable situations.
(My brother calls me a workshrink.)
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