Negotiating: Getting More by Stuart Diamond – Business Book Review – 5 Invisible Strategies
How confident are you in your negotiating abilities, whether in your personal relationships, professional endeavors, or marketplace, including travel?
One book with a fresh perspective on negotiating is “Getting More: How to Negotiate to Achieve Your Goals in the Real World-The 12 Invisible Strategies That Changes Everything You Thought You Knew About Negotiating,” by Stuart Diamond.
Diamond embodies 40 years of negotiation expertise and teaches a negotiation course for MBA students.
He shares his entire negotiation class in three broad questions:
- What are my goals?
- Who are “they?”
- What will it take to persuade them?
The first six chapters explain Diamond’s 12 invisible negotiation strategies. These methods aren’t rocket science, but unless you already know how to do them; they’re completely unseen he says. Five of those skills are:
- Goals Are Paramount. Goals are the end-all and be-all of negotiations. You need to negotiate to meet your goals. Everything else is subservient to that. Write down your goals and remind yourself, not just at the beginning of the process, but throughout.
- Make Emotional Payments. The more important a negotiation is to an individual, the more irrational he or she often becomes. Irrational people are emotional people. When they’re emotional, they can’t listen. When they can’t listen, they can’t be persuaded. You need to tap into the other person’s emotional psyche with empathy. Value them or offer them other things that allow them to think more clearly.
- Every Situation is Different. Every negotiation is different because there are different people, or the same people on different days. Or, a different set of facts and circumstances, or a different goal. There is no “one-size-fits-all,” including race or gender.
- Incremental is Best. In our imagination, big, bold moves produce big successes. In reality, big, bold moves mostly scare people; you’re trying to go too far too fast. Incremental steps anchor people to the step or steps they’ve already accepted. They reduce the perceived risk of moving forward.
- Embrace Differences. Most people think different is wrong, risky, annoying or uncomfortable. But different is demonstratively better. It’s more profitable; and studies show that more creativity results from the clash of differing perceptions and experiences.
Diamond emphasizes that mastering the twelve strategies occurs only through practice; and that each method is situation-specific. He also uses the Baseball Hall of Fame as an analogy for your negotiating efforts: “If you are a.280 hitter in baseball, and you get one extra hit every nine games, you become a.310 hitter in baseball. And that is worth a spot in the Baseball Hall of Fame and $10 million more in your compensation. All for one extra hit every thirty-six times at bat.” You needn’t hit a home run when negotiating. Aim for one extra hit every nine games and you’ll be highly successful.
The people and processes used comprise more than 90 percent of what’s important in a negotiation says Diamond. The substance, facts, and expertise account for less than 10 percent, which is quite counterintuitive for most people.
Negotiating is often viewed as confrontational and manipulative, reserved only for the most talented. Diamond says that great negotiators are developed, not born. Becoming a better negotiator will enhance your self-confidence and provide a detailed approach to problem solving. It will also produce greater control over your life, more money and more peace of mind.
Getting More’s chapters include Getting More at Work, Getting More in the Marketplace, Parents and Kids, and Travel. Chapter 15, entitled “Public Issues” provides prescient insight on some of the key questions to ask when evaluating how well people are doing in solving a problem. Those challenges could be within the local school board or halfway around the world in the Middle East. The answers will reveal whether you have the right people negotiating, and the right processes.
If you’re looking to hone your negotiation skills, Getting more will provide some clear direction.
By Timothy Zaun
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