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Getting to Yes: Negotiating an Agreement Without Giving In
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Getting to Yes: Negotiating an Agreement Without Giving In

3.86  ·  Rating Details  ·  32,725 Ratings  ·  874 Reviews
Since its original publication nearly thirty years ago, Getting to Yes has helped millions of people learn a better way to negotiate. One of the primary business texts of the modern era, it is based on the work of the Harvard Negotiation Project, a group that deals with all levels of negotiation and conflict resolution. Getting to Yes offers a proven, step-by-step strategy ...more
Paperback, Second Edition, 224 pages
Published December 1st 1991 by Penguin Books (first published 1981)
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Community Reviews

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Bob Selden
Aug 04, 2008 Bob Selden rated it it was amazing
“Getting to Yes” is the benchmark by which all other books on negotiating should be judged. Authors Fisher, Patton and Ury have penned a book that has become a classic in its class as their negotiating principles have been used and quoted again and again the world over.

“Getting to Yes” is quite deceptive at first – it seems a little light weight as it is so easy to read. In fact one could read it from cover to cover in half a day quite easily. Yet, the four principles outlined in their negotiat
I attended a class on International Negotiations at the Foreign Service Institute this week and we were assigned this book to read for the class. I thought the book was rather straightforward and I liked the anecdotes. Overall, I think it was a good selection for our class and helped to emphasize the points being taught. I doubt I will become a master negotiator, but I do see benefits from this book and class in my personal life.

Some of the lessons I learned in class include the following:

Roberto Suarez
Jan 21, 2013 Roberto Suarez rated it really liked it
After reading "Getting to Yes", I realized the "bottom line" to negotiation is not the most effective approach to get to what everyone wants and its not to see the negotiation game as a win/lose experience, but a way to develop relationships. Similar to playing frisbee and the relationship of marriage, there are scenarios that have no place for win/lose negotiations because ultimately they will all end with lose/lose results. Individuals should focus, "To be better, the process must, of course, ...more
Jul 29, 2011 Mike rated it it was amazing
This book was recommended to me by about a dozen friends, colleagues, and professors before I finally decided to read it. Getting to Yes was a good mix between text book technique and anecdotal evidence in negotiations. It taught me to separate the people from the problem and to strive toward common interests to create a win-win relationship instead of playing a game of positioning for a win-lose scenario. I definitely recommend it to anyone who works for a living, anyone who pays rent or a mort ...more
Bad news, everybody: I've turned into a bore. You can tell, because on my first weekend of No Work At All in about six weeks, here I am, reading a guide to negotiation, cover to cover. It's official: I now do CPD for fun. Would you want to talk to me at a party? I wouldn't.

Which is kind of a shame, because this is pretty good. Full of excellent advice, useful scripts and contingency plans. Anecdotes from everything between lease negotiations and the preparatory talks for the Law of the Sea Conve
Федор Кривов
Есть третий путь ведения переговоров, предусматривающий позицию, основанную не на слабости или твердости, а скорее объединяющий и то и другое. Метод принципиальных переговоров, разработанный в рамках Гарвардского проекта по переговорам, состоит в том, чтобы решать проблемы на основе их качественных свойств, т. е. исходя из сути дела, а не торговаться по поводу того, на что может пойти или нет каждая из сторон. Этот метод предполагает, что вы стремитесь найти взаимную выгоду там, где только возмо ...more
Chad Warner
Jun 17, 2012 Chad Warner rated it really liked it
This book is a very useful and detailed guide to negotiating for mutual gain. It’s a mix of theory, application, and examples. The advice is realistic; it says to be optimistic but aware of your limits. As a freelance web designer (OptimWise), I negotiate in sales and client relations. I’ve seen this book mentioned in magazines like Inc. and Entrepreneur, and a few business and sales books. I finally decided to read it when it was recommended on This Week in Web Design.

Main ideas
• Understand em
Sep 13, 2014 Trevor rated it liked it
Shelves: psychology
I read this book years and years ago and then, recently, I was helping to write an article on Asia literacy and how this is treated in the Australian media and one of the things that struck me was how much was written about how Australia would benefit economically from a booming Asia, but how little was written about how Asia might benefit from having a relationship with Australia. One of the things this book tells you over and over again is that to really negotiate you need to spend at least as ...more
Dec 31, 2011 Tamara rated it it was amazing
Eye-opening. Now, how do I rewrite all of my bad habits to take advantage of the knowledge in this book...?

Could help provide a foundation for the upcoming website redesign discussions.

Favorite Tips

Separate the people from the problem.
Focus on interests, not positions.
Generate a variety of possibilities before deciding what to do.
Insist that the result be based on some objective standard.

Where perceptions are inaccurate, you can look for ways to educate. If emotions run high, you can find w
Sep 07, 2014 Sunny rated it it was amazing
A excellent book about negotiation. There were 4 key rules of negotiaton that I remembered from this:
1. Separating People and Issues - Fisher and Ury's first principle is to separate the people from the issues. People tend to become personally involved with the issues and with their side's positions. And so they will tend to take responses to those issues and positions as personal attacks. Separating the people from the issues allows the parties to address the issues without damaging their relat
Excellent Framework--

The framework of what the authors call "principled negotiation" is pretty much the same as the framework of "crucial conversations." It also meshes well with Dale Carnegie's framework of winning friends and influencing people and to some extent, Manuel J. Smith's Here Be Dragons and Stephen Covey's The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.

It lays out a practical approach to negotiation based on independent standards of fairness. And to do this, you need to separate the pe
Mike Fox
Aug 26, 2012 Mike Fox rated it did not like it
I read this after my boss sent me a copy indicating that the strategies contained within the book were quite valuable. I was aware that the book existed and of the concept of soft positional bargaining so I thought I'd check it out. What a load of crap. The book might be useful for politicians or other criminal enterprises but their examples of people engaging in soft positional bargaining didn't even sound like human beings but more like robots on Prozac. On top of that there were strong intone ...more
Peep Laja
Jun 03, 2007 Peep Laja rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: people that want to improve on their negotiation skills
This is a book about negotiations. We negotiate almost every day, whether its about the idea you came up with at work, which movie to see in the cinema or convincing somebody to do something. For those who want deeper insights into the art of principal based negotiations, this is a gem. I have used the knowledge I gained consciously so many times. I often in the middle of negotiations find myself thinking of the principals I learned, and have used them very successfully. There is no need to wast ...more
María Paz Greene
Oct 09, 2015 María Paz Greene rated it liked it
La primera vez que vi este libro creí que era algo MÁGICO. ¿De verdad, de verdad existía algo que permitía GANAR DISCUSIONES SIN PELEAR? ¿LOGRAR TODO LO QUE UNO QUISIERA? Se lo mostré corriendo a mis papás (era una niñita) y de respuesta recibí unos sonoros "jajaja"... algo malvado considerando que el libro lo habían comprado ellos.

Igual lo intenté. Era una linda ilusión. Creo que entonces no tenía la sutileza para entender los conceptos, así que no entendí, no retuve nada que realmente me sirvi
Sep 07, 2015 Leona rated it it was amazing
Shelves: leadership, business
Everything in life, can be a negotiation. This book gives a powerful lesson on staying focused on the issues rather than the positions.

Recommended for everyone. Easy to read.
Sujata Sahni
How important is it to you to resolve conflicts and get a win-win situation? How important is it to you to mantain a good working relationship inspite of differences?

An American father and son were playing Frisbie in Hyde Park back in 1964 and after being the centre of attention for a couple of hours, an Englishman finally approached them and asked them " Sorry to bother you, have been watching you for a quarter of an hour. Who's winning?" When it comes to negotiations, "who's winning" is an in
This book is pretty straightforward, and seems a bit plain -- I don't know whether that is because it's such a classic it's permeated our culture, or because I've already read a couple of books on negotiating (Secrets of Power Negotiating: Inside Secrets from a Master Negotiator and 3-D Negotiation: Powerful Tools to Change the Game in Your Most Important Deals) or maybe it really is written plainly. I think it's as solid advice as you can get without actual negotiating experience or practice.

Kenny Tang
Aug 07, 2011 Kenny Tang rated it liked it
Easy to read. Not the most exciting. But important enough to put on a must read list. I think the entire book is embodied in the example of two men in the library arguing over whether to open/close a window. One opens it and the other one would get upset, stand up and close it. They repeatedly go to the window every few minutes and open/close the window each time getting angrier and angrier. Then they argue about keeping the window open or shut. They hate each other at this point and thinks the ...more
India Braver
Dec 20, 2013 India Braver rated it liked it
2.7 stars. So I had to read this book for my Negotiations class and while a lot of the information seems really intuitive and like stuff you already know, it is organized well and some of the anecdotes are interesting. At the end of the book, the author comes right out and says you probably already know this stuff based on personal experience, but it is nice to have it written down. I didn't particularly find the book riveting or shocking or even particularly good, but it was okay. I could see h ...more
Mar 19, 2010 Triwahyudi rated it really liked it
Basically I would say that this book is normative and common knowledge book that put all the application methods into the theory. However I feel this book is very important as a handy book or guidebook for every negotiator while doing any negotiation. This book put all negotiation principles, techniques, and steps which sometime most negotiators forget to do during the negotiation process. The book is very easy to follow and the best point is we cannot disagree about the entire content of the bo ...more
Ash Moran
The book concludes: "You knew it all the time. There is probably nothing in this book that you did not already know at some level of your experience." To a large extent, this is true. The main concept behind "principled negotiation" is that the best, mutually beneficial agreements come from understanding why each side wants what they want, then looking for common goals and creative ways to satisfy both sides. This I know from the Conflict Resolution Diagram thinking tool from Theory of Constrain ...more
Apr 29, 2016 Karin added it
Shelves: non-fiction
Read for work. I was not disappointed and will try to keep these techniques in mind when I start having to negotiate with customers. I know that my social anxiety makes negotiating difficult for me, though all of this will be over the phone, which I do pretty well with. I think my biggest challenge will be becoming comfortable asking questions that would otherwise make me uncomfortable.
Jan 12, 2015 Justangie88 rated it it was amazing
I had to read this for a negotiations class I took, and it was a great read. The material is not difficult to get through, and they break down the process in an accessible way. It's information you can retain, and it sticks with you when you need it most. I recommend it for anyone looking to improve their negotiating skills in any situation - it's a great start.
Selena Stan
Jan 16, 2016 Selena Stan rated it it was amazing
Original perspective. The author is clearly an experienced teacher (in a wide sense) in this field of social sciences.

The book is based on the win-win effects of a "principled negotiation", as opposed to the classical "positional negotiation".

The author makes a very good argument for taking a new perspective on negotiation - he is probably using the "principled negotiation" technique himself in convincing the readers that they just read a really good book :)

Particularly useful to law practitio
Apr 16, 2011 David rated it liked it
Reviewing this just makes me look like a well read intelectual. I mean, if I'm reading this than what other self-improved, hard-hitting, esoteric awesomeness have I read. Well check out my other reviews. Actually I haven't finished this one. It was an old copy to begin with but leaving it in the hot sun inside my car all last summer really screwed up the glue in the binding. Now it's a bunch of loose pages with no cover. What I read was pretty cool. It has some great ideas if you are trying to n ...more
David Hornik
Dec 31, 2012 David Hornik rated it really liked it
I took a course in negotiation from Roger Fisher in law school and "Getting to Yes" was our text book. The course was largely made up of mock negotiations. And as much as I liked the course and the idea of "Getting to Yes," I have to admit that there were many times that I felt there was no great shared outcome -- no "yesable proposition." Which isn't to say that I don't think the construct is useful. I think it is a valuable way to think about negotiation. But I am not convinced that it is the ...more
Oct 27, 2009 Hans rated it really liked it
Good for what it was designed for. Negotiation was something I had to learn growing up in a family of 7 siblings. I was surprised to find that I already regularly employ most of the suggested techniques though they were able to help me better understand them. Overall the book was helpful. I think the main push of the book is 1) separate people from issues 2)Don't limit your options there are always creative ways to compromise and still make a win win situation, if you haven't come up with one yo ...more
The Book Man
Oct 28, 2015 The Book Man rated it it was amazing
LIKE it or NOT, you are a NEGOTIATOR. :D

~ “Face the problem, not the people.”
~ “Look forward, not back.”
~ “An open mind is not an empty one.”
~ “Be hard on the problem, soft on the people.”

Kirtida Gautam
Apr 25, 2016 Kirtida Gautam rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: self-help, yin-yang
I am researching for the Book 3 Yin Yang which is all about power, politics, and social influence. Therefore Getting to Yes was in my To-Read list for quite sometime now. But as I am preparing for an important upcoming negotiation, I decided to read it urgently and finished in 5 days. (which was not difficult considering it's one of the most interesting books I have read this year)

It's a must-read, and I mean MUST-READ book for any person who is dealing with any kind of negotiation-- which mean
Volodymyr Dehtyarov
Mar 28, 2016 Volodymyr Dehtyarov rated it it was amazing
Отличная книга от создателей Гарвардского переговорного проекта. Вместо рецензии расскажу историю из жизни: Ресепшен отеля в Египте. Заселяется наша группа, старший группы нависает на Хамида, главного распределителя номеров, выбивая номера с видом на море вместо "стандарт". Понимаю, что начинается обычный "танец" - дать номер похуже, дождаться возвращения возмущенного клиента, предложить доплатить за номер получше. Подхожу в разгар дискуссии на повышенных тонах.
- Привет, вас как зовут?
- Хамид
- Х
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Roger Fisher is the Samuel Williston Professor of Law Emeritus, Director of the Harvard Negotiation Project, and the founder of two consulting organizations devoted to strategic advice and negotiation training.

See also: Roger Fisher (academic) on Wikipedia
More about Roger Fisher...

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“People listen better if they feel that you have understood them. They tend to think that those who understand them are intelligent and sympathetic people whose own opinions may be worth listening to. So if you want the other side to appreciate your interests, begin by demonstrating that you appreciate theirs.” 3 likes
“Any method of negotiation may be fairly judged by three criteria: It should produce a wise agreement if agreement is possible. It should be efficient. And it should improve or at least not damage the relationship between the parties.” 1 likes
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