Negotiation Techniques

9 posts

What To Do When You’re Let Go From Work

I got a frantic call from a client the other day who was calling as he was driving out of his work’s parking garage. He was just laid off from his job of 19 years. The young girl from the HR department kept pressing him to sign off on the termination papers right there, but luckily Harold (not his real name) declined. He realised he was much too emotional to focus on what he was signing and […]


One of my clients and I were discussing a strategy to an upcoming negotiation. My client described the conversation she would have with her opponent on a topic of importance to her. After listening to her go off on a topic for quite a while, I asked her how that line of conversation would serve her overall goal for the negotiation. There was a pause while my client contemplated whether what she was attempting to […]


Back when I was just starting out in my career, my manager graciously sent me to a course in time management where I was first introduced to the book  called “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” written by Stephen R. Covey.  The course mostly focused on time management (a required job function of my then-current job), but I became most intrigued by the book and  read it on my own time. That was my first introduction to […]


BATNA is a term coined by Roger Fisher and William Ury in their 1981 besteller Getting to Yes: Negotiating without Giving In. It’s the acronym that stands for “Best Alternative To aNegotiated Agreement”. A good BATNA allows you to walk into any negotiation in a more comfortable position.  If you know you have a good alternative to the current negotiation (that is, if this negotiation does not occur), you are in a stronger negotiating position and chances are you will […]

Anchoring in Negotiations

Anchoring, in negotiation, is a reference point which forces us to rely heavily on that starting reference (the “anchor”) when making sense of an agreement or proposal. It is a cognitive bias that affects our subsequent decision making, whether it’s a starting price derived from a valid calculation or a number pulled out of a hat. You need to be very careful where you start in any negotiation because that starting point will have a […]

How to Negotiate Without Trying

All the kids have returned to school this week. I see them walking down the street with their backpacks full of new school supplies and it reminds me of my grade 5 teacher, who always said: “There’s no such thing as a bad question!” Asking questions is important. The right questions lead to important information which lead the negotiations in the direction of settlement or agreement. Sometimes asking questions feels uncomfortable. We don’t want to […]