Negotiating Skills (Essential Managers) Paperback – 17 Sep 1998
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About the Author
Tim Hindle is founder of the London-based business language consultancy, Working Words, which helps international companies to compose material in English and communicate their messages clearly to their intended audiences. A regular business writer, Tim Hindle has been a contributor to The Economist since 1979 and was editor of EuroBusiness from 1994 to 1999. As editorial consultant and author, he has produced a number of titles including Pocket Manager, Pocket MBA and Pocket Finance, and a biography of Asil Nadir, The Sultan of Berkeley Square.
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But it does a nice job as a thumbnail sketch on the subject. It is also a small enough volume that one can take this anywhere (a truly portable book!). The book defines its aim thus (Page 5): "Negotiation involved parties who each have something that the other wants, reaching an agreement to exchange through a process of bargaining. 'Negotiating Skills' explains this principle of exchange and gives you the confidence and skill to conduct negotiations and achieve a mutually acceptable outcome." The book is organized around three stages of a negotiating process--Preparing for a negotiation, Conducting a negotiation, and Closing a negotiation.
Preparing for a negotiation? Sections address the concept of exchange, identifying one's objectives, assessing the person with whom you are negotiating, choosing a strategy (One lesson: Keep strategy simple and flexible), developing an agenda (sounds simple enough, but an agenda has real value in any decision making process), and even seating plans. Actually conducting negotiation? How do you make a proposal? How to you respond to the other party's proposal? How can reading body language help? How can you strengthen your position and weaken your "adversary's"? Finally--closing the deal. Subjects addressed include handling breakdowns, using a mediator or going to arbitration.
Again, very brief. If you want a detailed discussion, this volume won't work for you. However, if you want a brief "common sense" introduction, this would be useful.
I found many of the important bullet points to be especially succinct and well written, and recommend this guide for them alone. The text is generally well illustrated, though a few of the diagrams are a bit superfluous and less than helpful.
This is an excellent compact guide and is handy as either an introduction or a refresher course on negotiating. I recommend it along with the rest of the series.
"Do not concede ground unless you receive something in return." -pg. 49 "Be flexible-it is a sign of strength, not of weakness." -pg. 11
If you have been in a car accident and can't solve the case with your insurance company, you might want to look at the Arbitration section. If you need a third party, a mediator could also be useful. A section on body language enables you to determine the attitude of the person you are negotiating with.
A nice handy guide which you could give out to all the managers in your company. It would also be a nice gift for anyone who makes proposals to obtain new business. You will feel pretty confident after reading this book.
~The Rebecca Review
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