Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Negotiation and Agility

Negotiation and Agility: "How should we reach wise agreements? How should we reach agreements that create good outcomes for both parties?

There are excellent answers to these questions. The answers stem from extensive research and apply to all kinds of negotiation, from buying used cars to nuclear disarmament. They were documented by Roger Fisher and William Ury in their classic book, 'Getting to Yes'. (It still sells over 3000 copies per week, 25 years after it was first published). Fisher and Ury have applied their findings in many areas, from industrial disputes and corporate mergers to the highest levels of international politics. They have personally facilitated peace talks in war zones around the world.

Fisher and Ury call their approach 'principled negotiation'. It contains four key elements:

Separate People from the Problem

Focus on Interests, not Positions

Invent Options for Mutual Gain

Use Objective Criteria

Each is explained in 'Getting to Yes'."