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

3.83 of 5 stars 3.83  ·  rating details  ·  24,477 ratings  ·  696 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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Bob Selden
“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
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Dolly
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:

"Peop
...more
Roberto Suarez
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
The Young Urban Unprofessional
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
Chad Warner
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
...more
Trevor
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
Taka
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
...more
Tamara
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
...more
Kenny Tang
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
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
Triwahyudi
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
David
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
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
Hans
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
Graham Herrli
This is the kind of book where after you read it, you think, "bah, of course I knew that already," but then the next day you find yourself using some of its principles consciously in a discussion, and you wonder whether you would have thought to use them if you hadn't read it. At the very least, the book will prompt insightful reflections on how to negotiate; even if hindsight bias makes such reflections appear as things you already knew, simply bringing such principles into recent memory may ma ...more
Helmut
Eine Pizza, ein Flugzeug und freies Geleit bis Turkmenistan
Da flanierten wir gemächlich über eine Strandpromenade in einem Ferienort in Tunesien. Alle naselang wurden wir von Händlern ziemlich aggressiv dazu aufgefordert, doch bitte die Waren in ihrem Kabuff zu inspizieren. Tut man das, geht es los - Preisverhandlung! Ich mag das nicht. Trotzdem muss ich nun aus anderen Gründen lernen, Verhandlungen anzunehmen und auszuführen. Als Bücherwurm sind Fachbücher natürlich meine erste Anlaufstelle, un
...more
Amanda
Writing from the Harvard Negotiation Project the authors distill common effective practices from large and small, documented negotiations from multi nation off sea oil drilling, to strikes, and rent increases are all filtered down to the bare parts of what makes a negotiation successful. This text is required for law students taking mediation.

The book is not about educating you to get your way, but an approach to deal with our differences. The basics are separating people from the problem, focu
...more
Deane
This book is kind of the benchmark, I think, for books on negotiating. It was written by three Harvard professors who collectively chair some foundation or think tank about negotiating. And not just business negotiating -- many of their examples come from the United Nations, and represent nations negotiating our territory and whether or not to go to war.

They break down the process and give you for major steps for getting to an agreement, all espousing a philosophy they call "principled negotiati
...more
K R N
I negotiated something today, that I wouldn't have normally even considered negotiable, and it worked... yay. Although, what they were asking was pretty indefensible, but still I think in the past I would have just walked away... in the US it doesn't usually occur to me to try to negotiate. I think aside from strategies, this book gives so many examples, you start to see things as more negotiable.
Daniel Aguilar
This is a nice book proposing an empathetic and fair-minded approach to negotiation. Most of what it covers is of course common sense, but as it usually happens with common sense, it turns out it's actually not that common.

Thinking from the other negotiators perspective, caring about their underlying interests, aiming for true and long-duration agreements that foster good relationships... this book claims that good negotiators are those who pay attention to reaching the best possible outcome fo
...more
CV Rick
I try. I try and I try. I really do try to like business books. I love history books and fictional worlds and memoirs. I love books, but I struggle with business books. They are usually pretty dry. That said, this one wasn't too bad.

Be nice. That's basically the rule to negotiation. Here's the thing I've found, if a deal is going to make both parties lives better, or easier than you can work something out. You have something they want and they have something you want. Just come to terms, but yo
...more
Larry McCloskey
This is the benchmark by which all negotiation books must be measured. Heck, all communication books should be held to this standard. The tips here create a framework for so much more than actual adversarial negotiation; they can, and should, be used in just about all communication situations. The authors' points on maintaining relationships over short term gains on substantive issues are paradigm-shifting.

The battle cry here is to not "battle" at all. Once one gets past the point where negotiat
...more
Tony
"Getting to Yes" is a classic book on the art of negotiation. Authors Fisher, Patton and Ury have created an approach that is easy to understand for a novice negotiator but is worthy as a reference guide for an expert. It explains how to achieve a negotiated outcome that benefits all parties, not just the winner -- something that is sadly missing from many books on negotiation.

Filled with practical advice, the tactics and strategies in this book have helped me and my colleagues negotiate multi-m
...more
Carlos Zambrano

Fue un buen libro pero debe de quedarse de consulta por que es muy practico y dificilmente la informacion te queda en una sola leida. Para mi uno de los puntos mas importantes del libro es aprender a discutir siempre acerca de un principio y siempre basarse en un principio
Jim Bennett
This is another book everyone should read. The subtitle, negotiating without giving in, is appropriate.
Many situations are unrecognized negotiations. For example, once at an after-office meeting, one young woman commented that she was not allowed to mention her religious beliefs. She had given in without negotiating.
With this book in your head, you can negotiate with Nikita Kruschev.
The definition of an efficient negotiation is breathtaking:
a very good outcome for us, optimal
an acceptable o
...more
Sunny
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
...more
Brian
Aug 08, 2011 Brian is currently reading it
No nonsense negotiating applicable to anybody who deals with people. The suggestions this book gives may seem obvious, but having them out in writing makes you aware of these suggestions and thus makes it easier to implement them. Highly recommended.
Lucy
Got this free from my firm's library (score!). Helpful advice basically about not being a hothead or a dickhead in dealing with conflicts. Also, makes me think of "Say Yes To the Dress!"
Carl Klutzke
Everyone who ever has to deal with other people would benefit from reading this. (In other words, everyone.) It explains how to separate people issues from the problem, focus on interests rather than positions, and work together to create options that satisfy all parties. Though my work as a business analyst doesn't typically require this sort of opposed negotiation, I found a lot in here that will be useful in discussions with stakeholders over their needs and priorities. I'll also want to read ...more
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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...
Beyond Reason: Using Emotions as You Negotiate Getting It Done: How to Lead When You're Not in Charge Getting Together: Building Relationships As We Negotiate Beyond Machiavelli: Tools for Coping with Conflict Building Agreement

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“The more extreme the opening positions and the smaller the concessions, the more time and effort it will take to discover whether or not agreement is possible.” 0 likes
“For more interesting examples from the Law of the Sea negotiations, see James K. Sebenius, Negotiating the Law of the Sea: Lessons in the Art and Science of Reaching Agreement (Harvard University Press, 1984).” 0 likes
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