Suraj Krishnan's Reviews > Getting Past No: Negotiating in Difficult Situations

Getting Past No by William Ury
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William Ury, co-founder of Harvard's program on Negotiation is just as good a writer as he is an academic. His experience lies not only within the confines of teaching but has been involved in a number of roles as an advisor, negotiator ranging from corporate mergers to wildcat strikes in a Kentucky coal mine to ethnic wars in the Middle East, the Balkans, and the former Soviet Union.

In his book "Getting Past No: Negotiating in Difficult Situations", William writes about how to negotiate with a customer/client/person who is unwilling to budge from his stance and proving difficult to negotiate with. This book will be useful for people from all professions since everyone negotiates on a daily basis involuntarily, from a mother convincing her child to eat vegetables to a salesperson trying to close a major sale.

This book deals with this by breaking down negotiations into 5 stages:

1. Don't react - Go to the balcony
The author urges us to view any negotiation from a third person's point of view. Doing so will remove any sentiments attached with the negotiation and can help us see a better picture.
Stay focused on your end goal and keep an eye on the prize.

2. Disarm them - Step to their side
We need to be unpredictable, which sometimes also means that we have to agree with our opponents in order to get things done. This disarms them and makes them less suspicious of your motive.
By stepping to their side, you accumulate more "yeses" which gives both of us a feeling of a more positive meeting.

3. Change the game: Don't reject..Reframe
By disagreeing with the prospective client, you are playing against their ego. Ask them open-ended questions like "Why not?", "what if?" to carry on with the negotiation.

4. Make it easy to say yes: Build a golden bridge
Try to understand how the client is benefited by your offer/product and work towards it.
My most favorite line in this book is "Help write your opponent's victory speech". This one beautiful sentence summarises the entire book. By drafting your opponent's victory speech, everything else will fall into place.

5. Make it hard to say no
Instead of bringing your opponent to his knees by pressuring him to say "yes", it makes more sense to make it harder to say "no". In this case, you come out of the negotiation without one lesser friend/prospect, with the possibility of a future agreement.
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Reading Progress

September 12, 2017 – Started Reading
September 17, 2017 – Shelved
September 18, 2017 – Finished Reading

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